June 17, 2008

Swope impresses on the national level

Austin Westlake tailback and Texas A&M commit Ryan Swope knew he was a good football player. He ran for 1,311 yards last season and caught another 23 passes in helping Austin Westlake to the state playoffs. He scored 21 touchdowns in 171 touches, an average of a score every eight times he touched the ball.

The 6-foot-1, 197-pound athlete clocked some of the fastest times in the state in the 100 meters this spring and wound up competing in the state track meet in Austin. Yet Swope looked at some of the attention being paid on some of the other runners across the state of Texas and wanted to prove to everyone that he could be every bit as good as they were.

He decided that the NIKE camp would be the best venue for him to display his skills. He planned on going to the one in Fort Worth in early April but had a regional track meet on the same day and had to skip the event. Since track season continued into May due to Swope's impressive skills, he missed most of the earlier camps that were held in closer proximity to his home. But he was bound and determined to make his case.

As a result, he and his family traveled more than 1,400 miles to Brigham Young University this past weekend for the last NIKE event of the year and did not get back to Austin until after midnight Monday morning. Nonetheless, Swope and his family were elated over his showing and he impressed numerous observers that were there from the Rivals.com network.

"Swope, a 6-foot-1, 197-pound athlete that's committed to Texas A&M already, blew away anybody he faced Saturday at the final NIKE Training Camp of the season" wrote national analyst Jeremy Crabtree. "Whether it was in blocking drills, bag work or in the one-on-ones, Swope was simply scintillating."

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