By the time Coach Jack Cosgrove left his office on the University of Maine campus Wednesday night, he had received 10 letters of intent from prospective football players. But because of factors out of his control, the recruiting class is not officially complete.

“All the things you need to have for a smooth day weren’t in place,” Cosgrove said after the first day of the signing period for this fall’s incoming class of freshmen football players. “I’m expecting things to wrap up (today).”

Wednesday’s official commitments included three recruits from Maryland, three offensive linemen and a junior college linebacker from California. Maine received letters of intent from:

• Daniel Upson, a wide receiver from Montgomery Village, Md.;

• Najee Green, a wide receiver from Accokeek, Md.;

• Brian Anthony, a linebacker from Columbia, Md.;

• Samuel Shipley, a linebacker from Santa Barbara, Calif., who played for two seasons at Santa Barbara City College;

• Malik Walker, a cornerback from East Orange, N.J.;

• Michael Kozlakowski, a defensive end from Lynbrook, N.Y.;

• Bruce Johnson, an offensive lineman from Rochester, N.Y.;

• Chase Hoyt, an offensive lineman from West Chester, Pa.;

• Daniel Carriker, an offensive lineman from Alexandria, Va.;

• Aamad Bush, a strong safety from Montclair, N.J.

Cosgrove anticipates at least 10 more commitments, and the NCAA prohibits coaches from specifically commenting on recruits until after coaches have received letters of intent.

While the football signing period continues through April 1, there’s a sense of urgency among coaches and recruits to sign letters of intent right away, officially securing their college choices contingent upon admission to the respective schools and compliance with NCAA rules and regulations.

Many high school football players across the nation officially announced their college decisions Wednesday morning, but the snowy weather that hit most of New England didn’t help that sense of urgency in Orono when it came to locking up commitments for the fall of 2011.

“That was a big challenge today,” Cosgrove said. “School shut down at noon and everybody left campus. We only had 10 of 20 come in and that was part of the challenge, the weather, not just here in Maine but throughout the Northeast.

“A lot of high schools in the region were closed, so that made it difficult for recruits to sign letters and fax them in and for us to receive them.”

Cosgrove said he expects to receive several more letters of intent in the coming days as well as commitments from walk-ons and in-state recruits.

“That’s part of the situation that makes things a little uncomfortable, with schools canceled across the state,” Cosgrove said.

Cosgrove explained that while there wasn’t necessarily a prize recruit, the focus is on integrating each player into the program as part of his class, as well as individual development.

“Any time we recruit a class, it really is the body of work as an entire class,” Cosgrove said. “That’s the thing you evaluate the most.

“Being in recruiting, to label someone as a premier guy, you don’t know how these things are going to shake out. I resist doing that.

“I get excited about some guys more than others but I’ve found sometimes the guy you’re most excited about is least impressive and the guy who may not be the most impressive is the most exciting.”

Staff Writer Rachel Lenzi can be reached at 791-6415 or at:

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