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May 17, 2006

Texas tidbits: Super sleepers showing up

As spring football winds down, new names begin to surface on the recruiting radar across the country. The talent-rich state of Texas is no different and many of these super sleepers are making early decisions.

Just this week, Harker Heights wide receiver Nick Trice decided he was done with his recruiting process and gave his commitment to Texas A&M.

While it's a solid pickup for the Aggies, it wasn't that long ago when many schools were waiting on the 6-foot-2, 183-pounder and debating whether or not to offer.

After moving from Europe to Texas, Trice had a season-ending injury during a scrimmage before his junior year even began. Schools were holding off, but a solid NIKE Training Camp performance and a great showing during other combines, earned him scholarship offers starting with Oklahoma State followed by Duke, Baylor, and of course A&M.

Houston is always home to top prospects, but not every talented player is identified early. The home to last year's giant player Ian Symonette, Houston St. Pius, is again on the radar with cornerback Tarence Farmer.

Though Farmer, at 6-foot-1, 185-pounds, has to fight for attention in private school competition, he's caught enough looks to garner his first offer from Oklahoma State. Florida, LSU, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas A&M, and many others may also jump on board as Farmer's stock continues to rise.

East Texas has its fair share of top prospects that started a little later than others with scholarship offers. Many people had never heard the name of running back Carmen Boyd-Anderson, but the Jacksonville, Texas prospect has already picked up two offers from Kansas State and Missouri. Nebraska and Iowa appear to also be close for the big back.

Tyler Lee pass-catcher Jacob Amie went through a large portion of the spring with just mail but no offers. It was hard for colleges to ignore a 6-foot-3, 219-pound receiver that oozes potential much longer. Amie went from zero to six offers seemingly overnight.

Texas Tech, who sits at the top of his list, is joined by Kansas State, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, Nebraska, and Rice as his current offers.

Don't forget about West Texas.

While El Paso Andress defensive tackle Andre Jones, a Rivals100 member, was well known early, another prospect in the city was also picking up early interest. El Paso Chapin DT Dominique Hamilton isn't under the radar anymore. The Big 12 is kicking up interest with an offer from Missouri already in hand. That was soon joined by UTEP, Colorado, Missouri, Texas A&M and Nebraska.

Central Texas may be the biggest hotspot for sleepers this year. Seguin, Texas is home to two big prospects in linebacker Marcus Richardson and fast-rising safety Desmond Jackson.

Jackson started quick with two offers from Nebraska and Oklahoma State, but then found out that the Oklahoma Sooners were making an offer.

Leander, Texas athlete Josh McKinley picked up an early offer from SMU and Hutto, Texas star Jeremy Kerley may end up being the most recruited of the bunch.

Kerley went from wondering where the offers were to having them in writing from Arizona, Baylor, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas Tech, and TCU. Others may be close.

By summers end, more sleepers will undoubtedly emerge from the Lone Star state.

Baylor is not waiting around

It's pretty much been the Texas Longhorn show in recruiting this year, but other teams in-state like Baylor, are not exactly hurting for top prospects. The Bears picked up two solid sleepers in wide receiver Krys Buerck and defensive tackle Rex McDougald, but star power hit the commitment list Monday evening.

Word spread that heavily recruited offensive tackle Lonnie Edwards had turned down offers from schools like Arizona, Kansas, Ole Miss, Oklahoma State, Purdue, and Texas Tech to give his early commitment to Baylor.

The 6-foot-5, 305-pounder, says that it wasn't a quick decision.

"It's been on my mind for a while and I was just thinking it was about time to go ahead and make a decision," Edwards said. "It just feels right."

While the commitment of Edwards is big, the domino effect may be even more important with some bigger name prospects as Baylor continues to do a solid job in-state.

Trojans get involved with another Texan

It's hard to find a player in the Lone Star state that has done a better job in backing up his pre-evaluation Rivals100 rating than wide receiver Terrance Toliver. The 6-foot-5, 180-pounder has added scholarship offers from coast to coast and from some very big named programs.

LSU, Miami, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Nebraska, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, and Arizona were the big ones that Toliver had on his mind. That changed when Southern Cal joined the race with their scholarship offer.

That changed Toliver's top five again.

"I know it keeps changing and it will continue to change," Toliver said about his top five. "But, right now it's USC, LSU, Oklahoma, Miami, and Texas Tech."

Where some people feel the Trojans could sneak in and pickup his commitment, LSU is quickly becoming a prime contender for the talented receiver. His uncle, Harvey Williams, was a big pickup for the Tigers in the mid-80's.

That still has an effect on Toliver.

"LSU is where my uncle went, so that's why they're there," Toliver said. "Plus, I feel really good about that coaching staff at LSU."

Though teams like Texas Tech, USC, and Oklahoma could all end up with his signature, LSU is a team that's not going anywhere, any time soon.

Move-ins making noise

When a Rivals100 member moves into a program like Cedar Hill (Texas) High School, people will take notice. The 6-foot-6, 285-pound Darrion Weems made the move from California to Texas early this year and is the next big thing at the talent-rich program in North Texas.

Now, alongside teammate and fellow top recruit John Jones, Weems looks to continue his top play. Weems has already earned offers from Arizona, Baylor, Boston College, and Oregon. Many feel that while Jones may be the better performer now, Weems has the better upside at the next level.

Former Atlanta (Ga.) Parkview quarterback Patrick Witt is also on the radar again after making the jump to Texas.

Witt, the 6-foot-4, 215-pounder, is now making a name at Wylie (Texas) High School. He's already picked up the first offer from Wisconsin.

Texas A&M commit Lionel Smith, though classified currently as a 2006 prospect, is another player that made the move from New Orleans to the Houston area where offers came in early.

Etc.

Langham Creek wide receiver Tyler Melton picked up his first two scholarship offers this week from Iowa State and Air Force...Houston athlete D.J. Harper has also added new scholarship offers from UTEP and Tulane...Dallas carter offensive lineman Jeremiah Hatch holds four offers but says he's waiting to see what Oklahoma is going to do before deciding.


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