St. Thomas football announces 2012 recruiting class

The St. Thomas football team’s 2012 fall recruiting class is highlighted by 15 players invited to play in their respective state’s all-star games.

<p>Wayzata defensive end Kit Snyder was a first team All-Metro selection last fall and is a part of the 2012 St. Thomas football recruiting class. (Courtesy Kit Snyder)</p>
Wayzata defensive end Kit Snyder was a first team All-Metro selection last fall and is a part of the 2012 St. Thomas football recruiting class. (Courtesy of Kit Snyder)

The class is made up of 71 recruits from seven states: Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, California, Iowa, Michigan and Colorado, and coach Glenn Caruso said he’s excited about the group’s talent level.

“It’s not only a big class, but more importantly it’s a very talented and a very deep class,” he said.

Caruso did not mention any specific players he was excited about, but guys like Kit Snyder, a 6-foot-3-inch defensive end from Wayzata, and David Simmet, a 6-foot-9, 340-pound left tackle from Hill-Murray, could potentially see playing time right away.

“There will be a handful of guys that will have the opportunity to come in and play right away, but more importantly the intent is that the guys will come in and be prepared to work,” Caruso said.

Simmet, who is also planning on playing basketball at St. Thomas, was a second team All-Metro selection in football and averaged 13.8 points on the hardwood. He also had a 4.0 GPA and was involved in theater.

Former Hill-Murray defensive coordinator Joe Lepsche said Simmet is a well-rounded guy who’s light on his feet for someone his size.

“I think he’s a kid who can come in and compete for a starting spot as a freshman,” Lepsche said. “He hasn’t even tapped into how good he can be.”

Snyder led a Trojan defense that dominated teams last season. He recorded 50 tackles and 11 sacks, and that’s after missing two games because of an injury. Snyder was also a first-team All-Metro selection.

Wayzata coach Brad Anderson said that Snyder is a very athletic, explosive defensive lineman who has a knack for making a lot of big plays.

“He’s a high-motor guy,” Anderson said. “At a program like St. Thomas, where they’re looking at competing for a national championship, it’s pretty difficult as a freshman to step in and play right away. However… if there’s a guy I think could step in and play at that level, I think he certainly would be one of them. He’s a very gifted athlete, and he’s played against some really good competition. Given that, I would think he would be able to compete for a spot very early on.”

The Tommies also got a boost on special teams with the addition of All-State kicker/punter Paul Graupner. The Benilde-St. Margaret’s product is also a gifted soccer player and was part of last fall’s state champion team. Graupner plans on playing both football and soccer at St. Thomas.

Benilde-St. Margaret’s coach Jon Hanks said Graupner is the best kicker in Red Knight history and would be surprised if he doesn’t get a chance to play right away.

“If he’s not contributing, I want to see the kid who’s better than him. He could be a D1 guy with some work,” Hanks said. “I think in four years, he might be the kid that shocks some people when he goes and kicks and punts and makes an NFL squad.”

Though the class is big, Caruso said he and his staff do not focus on the quantity of players but rather the quality of the young men they attract to the school.

“The number of bodies is fairly irrelevant. We’re looking at guys that we can plug in and get better year in and year out, throughout each of our positions,” he explained.

Caruso led the Tommies to a 7-3 record in his first season and a record-setting 11-2 record, including a trip to the NCAA quarterfinals, in 2009. Prior to Caruso’s arrival, St. Thomas finished 2-8 in 2007. The two-year turnaround is ranked as the biggest turnaround in Division III football over that time period.

The Tommies won back-to-back conference championships in 2010 and 2011. The 2012 senior class will bring a career regular-season record of 29-1 into its final campaign this fall.

Caruso said there is no magic to finding the right prospect, but he instead focuses on finding players who are “physically, emotionally and mentally” right for the program, a mold he thinks this incoming class fits well.

“At the heart of it, it’s finding guys that care about the team and the work that we’re going to put in,” he said.

Caruso has guided the Tommies to three straight national playoff appearances, including a semifinal appearance last December, and for the second consecutive year, he was voted the Liberty Mutual National Coach of the Year for Division III.

Caruso credits the program’s strength for the quality of players he has been able to attract.

“We were able to attract a very high level of student athlete, most of which were offered scholarships at the Division-IAA and Division-II level,” Caruso said. “I think that speaks to the power of the program, the power of the sport and the power of St. Thomas that we can attract that type of young man here.”

2012 St. Thomas Football — Incoming Freshmen


Teddy Andrews, St. Thomas Academy

Blake Andruss, Bloomington Jefferson HS

Jon Best, St. Thomas Academy

Cole Boughner, Anoka HS

Brett Bremer, Hopkins HS

Kendrik Brewster, Cretin-Derham Hall

Taylor Case, Prior Lake HS

Rois Coolidge, DeLaSalle HS

Trokon Doeyou, Minneapolis Henry HS

Richie Donovan, Totino-Grace HS

Wofgang Dvorak, Waseca HS

Matt Dysthe, Prior Lake HS

Nicholas Elsenpeter, St. Thomas Academy

Antonio Erskin, Cretin-Derham Hall

Alex Fenske, Marshall HS

Patrick Flaherty, Grand Rapids HS

Alex Fredrich, Tartan HS

Michael Fritz, Holy Family Catholic HS

John Gould, St. Thomas Academy

Paul Graupner, Benilde-St. Margaret’s

Evan Guggenberger, Rocori HS

Tony Harlander, Albany HS

Hootie Hubbell, St. Thomas Academy

Mozus Ikuenobe, Eden Prairie HS

Tommy Johnson, Cretin-Derham Hall

Jack Kaiser, Prior Lake HS

Jesse Krull, Eden Prairie HS

Nick Lefebvre, Foley HS

Connor Longhenry, Glencoe-Siver Lake HS

Tim McClanahan, Cretin-Derham Hall

Luke Molus, Becker HS

Sean Murphy, Nicollet HS

Mack Nelson, Eagan HS

T.J. Patrias, Holy Angels HS

Ryan Reger, Eastview HS

Jake Remes, Edina HS

Tyler San Agustin, Apple Valley HS

Stefan Sauer, Rosemount HS

Moses Saygbe, Elk River HS

Tom Selz, Cambridge-Isanti HS

David Simmet, Hill-Murray HS

Bryan Sinkel, Delano HS

Kit Snyder, Wayzata HS

Leo Spott, Duluth East HS

Esten Weber, Dawson-Boyd HS


Sam Enea, Homestead HS

Brady Goska, Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln HS

Joe Greif, Marquette University HS

Dan Herriges, Hamilton Sussex HS

Ryan Himes, Somerset HS

Cody Jaeger, Marquette University HS

Zak Kujawa, Waukesha West HS

Calvin Leszczynski, Milwaukee Piux XI HS

Matt Misiewicz, Marquette University HS

Eric Sutton, Saint Mary’s Springs HS


Eric Bielinski, Loyola Academy

Charlie Dowdle, Loyola Academy

Jack Kellner, St. Viator HS

Jim Lynch, Benet Academy

Matt Marciano, St. Rita HS


Zach Brennan, Iowa City Regina HS

John Foley, Des Moines Roosevelt HS

Conner Frederick, Alburnett HS


Jack Gilliland, Grace Brethren HS

Dominic Truoccolo, St. Ignatius HS

Matt Wagner, Marina HS (Arizona State University)


Ryan Bradley, Grand Rapids Catholic Central HS

Trent Wismer, Detroit Catholic Central HS


Eric Herringer, Regis Jesuit HS

Kiel Osterman, Palmer Ridge HS

Ryan Shaver contributed to this report.

Nick McAndrews can be reached at

One Reply to “St. Thomas football announces 2012 recruiting class”

  1. What gives? Recruiting class. Spring intrasquad games. Are we still division III?

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