Today, a Blizzard blog post clarified the situation, and the results are in: No free level 80 monk for you.
While this still leaves open the question of whether Recruit-A-Friend's level-granting bonuses will work for new monks, at least now the playing field is balanced for all who will be competing. While my intuition tells me that Recruit-A-Friend bonuses will probably be allowed for monks, you may want to start acquiring some heirlooms, just in case. (EDIT: Yes, RaF is allowed for monks.)
It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!