Maine: Black Bears bring in a talented mix of transfers and incoming freshmen.

First year coach Jordan Stevens announced the Black Bears 2022 recruiting class on Wednesday. The Black Bears augmented a strong returning core with some talented transfers and incoming freshmen.

The following players signed their letters on Wednesday.

Elijah Alexander, DE, 6’4 230, Bear, Delaware (St. Georges Technical H.S.)

Jack Boutaugh OG, 6’4 260, Turner, Maine (Leavitt H.S.)

Zion Cheeks, OLB, 6’2, 210 Penns Grove, N.J. (Penns Grove H.S.)/Rutgers

Eric Dolmus, WR, 5’9, 175 lbs Guilford, Conn. (Gilford H.S.)

Jack Emerson, QB, 6’1″ 210 lbs Saco, Maine (Thornton Academy)

Aaron Gethers, CB, 5’11 190 Blythewood, S.C. (Boston College/Western Carolina/Bishop McDevitt HS)

Cooper Heisey, TE, 6’4″ 250, Scotch Plains, N.J. (Rutgers/Scotch Plains-Fanwood H.S.)

Daniel Holbrook, P/K, 5’9 195 Riva, Md. (Dematha Catholic H.S.)

Thomas Horton, DT, 6’0 260 lbs Standish, Maine (Bonny Eagle H.S.)

Nicolas Kalume, DE, 6’3 225, Mississauga, Ontario (Football North)

Jaylen Long, DB, 6’3 190, Springfield, Mass. (Cheshire Academy)

Zachariah Oja, RB, 6’0 210 lbs Standish, Maine (Bonny Eagle H.S.)

Sean Pozniak, OT, 6’8 300, Ashburn, Va. (Tuscarora H.S.)

The following players signed early in December.

Ayden Pereira, QB, 6’0 190, Auburn, N.H (Central Catholic/Lawrence,Ma)

Rohan Jones, WR, 6’2 215, Montreal, Quebec (Collège Jean-Eudes)

On paper, this is a talented group. The two Rutgers transfers, Cheeks and Heisey could come in and make an immediate impact on their respective side of the ball.

Gethers could be the most impactful player in this class in 2022. He has the skill set to be amongst the top corners in the CAA. The Boston College transfer has a lot to prove too so he will get every opportunity to make an impact.

Stevens is genuinely excited about the addition of Gethers.

“Aaron brings maturity and toughness to our secondary. Aaron has the size and speed to be a great player here. We are excited to see Aaron take off at the University of Maine.”

As usual, the Black Bears were able to land some of the top talent in-state. Jack Boutaugh, Zach Oja, Thomas Horton and Jack Emerson were amongst the top players in Maine and all could develop into difference makers down the road.

The Black Bears also landed three high end talents in Ayden Pereira, Rohan Jones and Jaylen Long. I covered Ayden Pereira and I can tell you that he will be in the mix to start at quarterback right out of the gate. His competitiveness and athleticism is off the charts.

Jones is a big receiver at 6-2 215. He’s a bully one on one and is strong in all three levels of the passing game. Of course I would be remised not to mention another Canadian recruit, defensive end Nicholas Kalume. As always, the Maine staff finds talent north of the border.

Long has terrific size and can play corner or safety. Stevens really likes his upside.

“We’re excited to welcome Jaylen to our Maine Football family. Jaylen has a huge upside and will develop into a playmaker in our secondary. We can’t wait to get to work with Jaylen.”

It was a solid first class for Stevens and his staff as they try to build on a 6-5 season.