All of the NLI's for scholarship players are in! 17 new players will join the Villanova Wildcats roster this summer. The first thing you should know is that this class is shockingly balanced and comprehensive. The Wildcats staff did a great job of filling in depth where they needed to and making sure they brought in players at every position on the roster.
Let's take a look, position by position and give out some grades.
Quarterback - A-
While this was a luxury pick-up in a way, Jack Schetelich adds another dual-threat talent to the roster. Stocking the roster with talent will be vital in the post-Robertson era, and Schetelich brings a winning pedigree. Schetelich is slated to redshirt this year, but he's excited to challenge for the starting job down the line.
Running Back - B
Given the amount the Wildcats run the ball and the injuries they have sustained in recent years, some more depth here may have been beneficial. They return a ton of experience to the backfield, so this wasn't a high priority position, and Covington looks like a potential star down the road with his size and speed.
Offensive Line - A+
It's tough to build depth in the trenches when you need to spread a limited amount of scholarships around, but Villanova's offense is predicated on having 5-7 game-ready players every year. Grabbing five players here is a home run, and there's a good mix of guys who could be ready right away if needed (Paul Grattan, MJ Dumas) and upside grabs like Nanakofi Appiah. Villanova is returning a lot of experience, so don't expect any of these guys to win a job out of camp. But the future here is very bright.
Wide Receiver - A
Can you say speed? All three signings have a set of wheels on them, and look like they could be immediate contributors on special teams as well. How well they pick up the blocking scheme of Villanova's offense may determine how soon they play, but Changa Hodge and Zac Kerxton give Villanova the type of big-play wide receivers they've sorely missed on the outside since Norman White graduated, and Josh McGrigg is the type of guy who can turn a short gain in to a touchdown on any given play.
Tight End: B+
Not a particularly focal point of the offense, but an area of the roster that could use an infusion of talent in the passing game. Some added points here for keeping Summers at home despite a late offer from Kansas State. He's the type of athlete that could have a similar impact to Earnest Pettway down the line.
Defensive Line: A-
It's great to see Jeff Wiley follow in his brother's footsteps to the Main Line, and he's got the size to have an impact early in his career if he's ready. Aaron Seigle was an important grab as well to provide some cover in the middle of the line as well.
Like Covington, this isn't a knock on him so much as it is a knock on the number of bodies the coaching staff decided to bring in. Even with the losses of Don Cherry and Dillon Lucas, this is one of the most loaded groups on the roster. Hunter will fit right in with his talent.
Defensive Back: B+
Villanova kept Terrell Vassel away from the FBS and he is a big-time talent with great size. Korey Stevens has a winning pedigree and will join a loaded groups of CBs. Nowoola Awopetu is an important addition to the depth too, since the current crop of CBs will be out of eligibility sooner than we realize.
Special Teams: A+
Bringing in an accomplished kicker like Drew Kresge as a walk-on will have fans smiling. The kicking game has been a sore spot, and more competition for the job is the only way to handle it. There are also several players - most notably Josh McGrigg - that could be impact players in kick and punt returns as well.