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The News-Sentinel sports staff will feature a different verbally committed player for the four NCAA Division I football programs (Ball State, Indiana Notre Dame and Purdue) in Indiana leading up to National Signing Day on Feb. 5.
Here is today's Indiana's featured commit:
Position: Offensive guard
High School: Lawrence Central High School in Indianapolis, Indiana
Weight: 320 pounds
Commitment date: December 19, 2013
Other scholarship offers: Rutgers, Syracuse, Temple.
Ranking: Rated a four-star prospect by Rivals.com and the No. 3 recruit in the Rivals.com prep school postseason top 30; rated a three-star prospect by Scout.com.
Indiana depth chart at position: Senior Bernard Taylor, redshirt sophomore Dan Feeney, redshirt sophomore Wes Rogers, redshirt junior Jake Reed.
Scouting report: In landing Gardner, Indiana coach Kevin Wilson showed that he is willing to do anything it takes to improve the talent level of the Hoosiers. Gardner was originally an Ohio State commit, but his scholarship was yanked after a disciplinary issue. He then went to prep school for a year where he was nabbed by Wilson. Gardner has a massive frame that could have broken into the two-deep as a freshman, but he will have to sit out for a season due to NCAA Division I transfer rules. It may be a blessing in disguise as Gardner should be a mainstay along the Indiana offensive front for years to come and will only get better during his redshirt season.