MANHATTAN, Kansas — Bill Snyder understands he doesn't have a quarterback on his roster with much of a playing pedigree. However, the Hall of Fame coach wasn't prepared to settle for Jake Waters' successor.
Snyder announced a 24-member class on national signing day with only one signal caller in Alex Delton of Hays, Kansas.
"We didn't want to recruit just another guy," Snyder said after he and his staff evaluated their options in the junior-college ranks. "We didn't want to bring someone in that didn't make us better and we couldn't identify that option."
Delton, who is already enrolled at Kansas State, will be given the opportunity to compete for the starting spot with the three other returning quarterbacks on the roster.
"I can't recall ever starting a freshman," Snyder said. "(But) he'll be competitive because of the things that he's capable of doing."
Replacing Tyler Lockett and Curry Sexton won't come easy for the Wildcats, but they turned to familiar bloodlines to replenish nearly 70 percent of its receiver production in 2014-15. They added three to the group including Denzel Goolsby, who was named Gatorade Kansas Football Player of the Year after a state-championship season at Bishop Carroll High School.
Also entering the mix is Isaiah Zuber, who tallied all-region and all-county honors at Stephenson High School.
"All of them have a chance (to play immediately)," Snyder said.
Duke Shelley, who was rated as the 22nd-best defensive back in the nation by Rivals.com, is the highest-rated prospect in the class. The lone four-star recruit turned down offers from Clemson, Wisconsin and Mississippi State to join Snyder's program.
In total, the class represents tradition for Snyder and his staff by adding eight players from Kansas. The signing of only one junior college product (Aulelio Olomua, DE, Mesa Community College) is the fewest for the program since 1992.
National rankings: (Rivals 50; Scout 61)
Best in class: Duke Shelley, DB, Tucker, Georgia
Best of the rest: Alex Delton, QB, Hays, Kansas; Bryce English, DL, DeSoto, Texas; Isaiah Zuber, WR, Stone Mountain, Georgia; Denzel Goolsby, WR, Wichita, Kansas
Late addition: Elijah Sullivan, LB, Tucker, Georgia, who switched to Kansas State on national signing day after a commitment to Auburn that lasted nearly a year.
One that got away: Mohamed Barry, LB, Loganville, Georgia, who committed to Kansas State in June and switched his pledge to Nebraska.
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