Football - Thu, Feb. 11, 2010
CHICAGO - Saint Xavier University football coach Mike Feminis recently got six more commitments by incoming freshmen recruits from the Chicagoland area in offensive linemen Tim Ladd and Kenny Smith, defensive backs David Pirkle and Brandon Salemi, and linebackers Zachary Dolph and John Pullia. Ladd played at St. Rita High School in Chicago, under coach Todd Kuska, while Smith played prep football at Minooka High School in Minooka, Ill, under coach Bert Kooi. Pullia and Salemi both enjoyed standout prep careers at Glenbard North High School in Carol Stream, Ill., under coach Ryan Wilkins. Pirkle played at Marist High School in Chicago under coach Pat Dunne, while Dolph wrapped up his prep career at Joliet Catholic Academy in Joliet, Ill., under coach Dan Sharp.

Ladd is 6-4 and 260 pounds and lives in Chicago with his parents, Dave and Margaret Ladd. Smith is 6-2 and weighs 270 pounds and hails from Minooka, Ill., with his parents, Kenny and Melisa Smith. Coach Feminis is excited about the prospect of this pair making an impact right away as freshmen.

"The offensive line is a huge priority for us this year, so we are thrilled to get Tim and Kenny," said Feminis. "Both of these guys are physically ready to play at the collegiate level and I can see them making the travel squad as freshmen. I have no doubt they will have bright futures at Saint Xavier."

Pullia is 5-11 and 210 pounds and lives in Glendale Heights, Ill., with his parents, John and Luann Pullia. Salemi joins SXU out of Bloomingdale, Ill., and currently resides with his parents, Ken and Sandy Salemi. Feminis believes that signing this pair gives him two of the best players out of the DuPage Valley Conference.

"It is great to sign two of the top players from one of the best programs in the DuPage Valley Conference," said Feminis. "Brandon is a terrific athlete, who has the ability to play corner or safety at our level. John is a tough, physical player, who we think has an excellent future. Both of these guys will help us on special teams next season and compete for playing time on defense as immediate back-ups to our veterans."

Dolph is 6-0 and 215 pounds and lives in Crest Hill, Ill., with his parents, Tom and Paula Dolph. Pirkle is 6-0 and 175 pounds and comes in from Frankfort, Ill., where he resides with his parents, Don and Kathy Pirkle. Both defensive players have the tools and athletic ability to make quick transitions to the college game.

"Werner Emmrich (SXU's defensive coordinator) has had the opportunity to see David play in person several times and he thinks he will be an outstanding corner for our program," said Feminis. "He has quick feet, can cover exceptionally well and loves contact. Zach is an outstanding linebacker, who played inside for Joliet Catholic. I think he runs and covers well enough to play on the outside as well. He will help us on special teams right away and probably compete for a starting job in his second year."