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Arizona Wildcats’ football roster reveals plenty of new names

Lucas Petrullo tries to run through a tackle in last year's state playoffs. Photo by Rob Schumacher/The Arizona Republic

The new Arizona Wildcats’ on-line football roster includes 10 players — presumably walk-ons — not included in the team’s spring guide.

The team also has had some departures since then, including sophomore cornerback Cortez Johnson and linebacker Brian Wagner.

Linebacker Cody Ippolito from Scottsdale Chaparral High School signed in February but is not on the updated roster. He underwent knee surgery after last season and was considered to be a candidate to delay his enrollment until January.

The newcomers, added either during the spring or for the summer, include two quarterbacks. One of them is former Louisiana Tech starting quarterback Nick Isham (we wrote about him here).

Coach Rich Rodriguez also has added a pair of receivers, two linebackers, three defensive backs and a long-snapper since releasing his initial spring roster.

Will we hear of these guys ever again? Consider that Rodriguez is known for having a keen eye for walk-on talent, and it was his staff that plucked safety Jordan Kovacs out of a walk-on tryout at Michigan a few years ago.

Kovacs quickly became a starter and a leader and, now a senior, has a chance to finish in the Michigan top 10 for career tackles.

Here are the UA newcomers:

* WR Ademola Adeniran (5-7, 160) — He is a sophomore who attended NAIA school Avila University last year. Adeniran, who attended Phoenix North High, joined the team in the spring. He will wear Juron Criner’s old number, 82.

* WR R.J. Aguero (6-2, 190) — A 2011 graduate of John B. Alexander High in Laredo, Texas, he made the team after an open tryout this spring. He made 27 catches for 426 yards and six touchdowns as a senior.

* S Clint Cochrane (6-0, 180) — Limited by injuries as a senior last season but the CDO grad earned honorable mention All-Southern Arizona honors from the Arizona Daily Star.

* QB Nick Isham (5-10, 185) — Story.

* LS Tim Johnston (6-3, 215) — The freshman from Piedmont (Calif.) High joined the team in the spring. He joins senior Brian Chacon, who handled snaps on place-kicks last season, and 2010 starter Chase Gorham, who returned to Arizona this spring after leaving the team at the start of fall camp last season.

* QB Jack Nykaza (6-1, 190) — Story.

* LB Lucas Petrullo (6-1, 225) — He missed almost all of his senior season because of a broken foot, but the linebacker/running back returned in time to help Scottsdale Chaparral High win a third consecutive state title. He had scholarship offers from Air Force, San Diego State and South Dakota State but decided in January to be a preferred walk-on with a chance of earning a scholarship at Arizona.

* CB Justin Samuels (5-10, 175) — He made the team in the spring after tryouts. Samuels is a 2009 graduate of Camas (Wash.) High School.

* CB Connor Sohns (5-11, 185) — The sophomore from Sabino High joined the team in the spring.

* LB Shadow Williams (6-0, 218) — He is from Land O’ Lakes High in Tampa, but has said in stories that he is originally from Arizona and wanted to return. He battled injuries as a senior, according to reports, earning all-conference honors with 62 tackles and three sacks. He had four games with double-digit tackles.

Here is a highlight video of Williams:

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