Stanford recruits another top 15 class: Breaking down Card Class 2014

Solomon Thomas dons the nerd glasses - ESPNU

Let's get familiar with the Cardinal's recruiting class after National Signing Day

Once again, the Stanford football office's fax machine provided the sweetest sound on campus.

David Shaw and the Cardinal snagged the 14th-best class in the nation and the 2nd-best in the Pac-12, behind only USC, who compiled the 10th-best class in the country with a big signing day.

The class of 20 was highlighted by Solomon Thomas, who brought out nerd glasses and a tree for his commitment, but the group of players looks like one that is going to have some special careers on the Farm. Keller Chryst comes in as a highly touted QB prospect and might be the starter in two or three years. Solomon Thomas put up some frighteningly good high school highlights and looks like he might be an absolute terror for opposing offenses even as a freshmen. Joey Alfieri has good size and should fit in easily with the Stanford inside linebacker group, while Bobby Okereke looks like a beast at outside linebacker. Christian McCaffrey has excellent speed and shiftiness, and there's a good chance he'll contribute to the offense and special teams this season. Dalton Schultz is on the fast track to be Stanford's next superb tight end. Add in four offensive linemen, and a few good-looking defensive backs and you've got a typical Stanford recruiting class.

Let's get to know the 20 new guys in Cardinal and White:

Keller Chryst - The Palo Alto QB had been committed for a while, and his senior year highlights look sharp.

Solomon Thomas - The defensive end from Texas looks like a true beast, and his decision to come to the Farm was one of the more highly publicized ones of the day - I guess that happens when you bring out a tree for your commitment.

Terrence Alexander -  The cornerback from Louisiana looks like he'd fit perfectly with Stanford's powerful DBs, and he wears number 9 - the same number that new superstar Richard Sherman wore on the Farm. Of course, he did mention that Sherman was his inspiration, so I wouldn't be surprised to see him wear #9 in Stanford Stadium someday.

Casey Tucker - Tucker picked Stanford just a week or so before signing day, and after the OL recruiting classes that this staff has put together, I'm in no position to doubt their eye for offensive linemen.

Dalton Schultz - The nation's best tight end has highlights to back it up.

Jesse Burkett - The Florida lineman picked the Cardinal over Vanderbilt (and Derek Mason) just a week or so ago, and he looks like an excellent addition.

Christian McCaffrey - The son of former Cardinal (and Denver Bronco) impressed in the Army All-American game with a nice punt return and catch out of the backfield. He's a nimble player who should be able to add something to the offense and special teams as a freshman.

Bobby Okereke - The nasty outside linebacker has some vicious highlights.

Brandon Simmons - Stanford's strong recruiting pipeline to Texas continues with a solid safety snagged right out from Longhorn territory. He will provide some needed depth at the back end this year.

Harrison Phillips

Austin Hall

Joey Alfieri - The linebacker from Oregon looks like a prototypical Stanford 'backer.

Isaiah Brandt-Sims - He's fast. And shifty. The Washington state track champion should add an interesting dynamic to the offense.

Denzel Franklin

Daniel Marx - He's a big, tough runner and I can see why the Cardinal coaches were tantalized by Marx's ability. He looks a bit like Ryan Hewitt already.

Alijah Holder

Jordan Perez

Alameen Murphy

Reilly Gibbons - The late flip from Miami helps add a little extra depth to the Stanford O-line class.

Lane Veach - Veach is a huge kid (6'6", 235 pounds) so he's got the frame to be the next Josh Mauro or Trent Murphy or Henry Anderson.

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