Tag:Johnathan Gray
Posted on: April 23, 2011 12:14 pm
 

4/23 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

- A few reasons why Johnathan Gray picked Texas

- Safety Trae Elston plans to visit Arkansas, Clemson, LSU, Auburn and Oregon among others.

- Tight end Joe Bolden picked up an offer from Tennessee.

- Top defensive back Geno Smith has Alabama, Tennessee and Florida State in his top three.

- Former five-star wide out Chris Dunkley is exploring a transfer from Florida to USF.

- More on the commitment of tight end A.J. Williams to Michigan.
Posted on: April 22, 2011 1:14 am
Edited on: April 22, 2011 1:27 am
 

Nation's top running back heads to Texas

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Everyone knew that Aledo (Texas) running back Johnathan Gray would play college football close to home, the only mystery was what school. With his options narrowed to Texas, Texas A&M and TCU, the accomplished back finally made his pick much to the delight to many fans across the state.

He'll be a Texas Longhorn.

The nation's top running back and eighth-ranked player overall according to CBSSports/MaxPreps analyst Tom Lemming, Gray is yet another talented in-state player to be scooped up by the Longhorns early in the recruiting process. He made his commitment at 12:05 Friday morning, which was also his 18th birthday.

The 5-foot-11, 190 pound Gray rushed for an eye-popping 3,221 yards and 61 touchdowns as a junior last season. The number also includes eight touchdowns in the state 4A championship game, which capped off Aledo's perfect 16-0 season.

Gray is currently sitting at 7,000 yards and 135 touchdowns for his high school career and a similar season to last year would put him within striking distance of the national career marks for yardage (11,232) and touchdowns (204).

His father, James, actually played at Texas Tech and nearly every school in the country extended an offer to the talented high school player but in the end, it was state power Texas that was the best fit for him. Gray will form a dangerous backfield with five-star running back Malcolm Brown, who signed with the Longhorns as part of the class of 2011.

Gray is the 16th commitment for Texas in the class of 2012, which is currently ranked as the top class in the country according to MaxPreps.

Image for MaxPreps Video.

Photo courtesy of James Gray, via Rivals' Brian Perroni.

Posted on: April 13, 2011 9:29 am
 

4/13 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

I wonder what the equivalent of an NFL lockout would be for college recruiting. Maybe a no phone call rule from the NCAA or something similar.

- Florida has wrapped up spring practice and now must turn their attention to recruiting.

- Defensive end Dominic Ramacher, who has a very touching story from last season, picked up an offer from Oregon State.

- Offensive tackle Derek Edinburgh said there’s a ‘strong possibility’ he could commit to Arkansas if he likes his un official visit and other tidbits.

- Running back Diante Harrison earned MVP honors at the Orlando NUC combine.

- Top ranked running back Johnathan Gray will not let a rumor from a blog affect his commitment.

- Quarterback Bennie Coney is learning to channel his emotions.

Posted on: April 11, 2011 12:43 am
Edited on: April 11, 2011 12:47 am
 

Texas' best shines at TCU Nike Camp

Posted by Bryan Fischer

FORT WORTH, Texas -- Well over 500 of Texas and the Southwest's finest football players came out for the annual Nike Football Training Camp on the campus of TCU Sunday afternoon. Although perhaps not as deep in terms of talent at some position groups than years past, the camp was nevertheless a destination for several of the top committed and uncommitted players in the area.

Dallas (Texas) linebacker and Texas commit Peter Jinkens was one of the top linebackers at event and it showed at the end when he was awarded the position MVP. He was explosive all day and seemed to ratchet up his game as the competition grew more intense.

"It's an honor and a blessing because there was a lot of good linebackers out here," Jinkens said. "To know that I'm the best one is a source of pride for me."

The 6-foot-1, 210 linebacker had several particularly good match ups with Allen (Texas) running back Jonathan Williams. The two had a few one-on-ones in the pass rush drill with Williams winning the first by getting physical against Jinkens' rush. The next play Jinkens made quick rush and got to the ball after making a move. The third rep could be considered a tie after Jinkens made a move and appeared to have Williams beat before he recovered to block Jinkens just long enough before reaching the ball.

"It was real fun," Jinkens said. "I went against him a lot in the pass rushing drill. I was kind of shocked myself. Today when we were doing pairs, I started crying. I don't know why but I just felt the passion of the game right there. I went in to competition mode and turned it up."

"It's competition all day," Williams said. "Me and Jenkins kept going up against each other in one-on-ones, they wanted us to go every time. It was a good competition."

One of the top linebackers in the state, much less at the Nike Camp, Jinkens was just one of several Longhorn commitments in attendance.

"Yeah, Hassan (Ridgeway), Curtis Riser, Thomas Johnson and I are all real good friends," he said.

The group was also at the camp doing a bit of recruiting and spreading the word about the Longhorns.

"Oh yes, we're trying to get a few more," Jinkens said with a smile before mentioning Johnathan Gray.

Gray is the nation's number one running back and has Texas as one of three schools he is considering.

Allen duo shines

Williams did not come home with the running back MVP award but he was one of the best looking backs competing. He had a slight injury issue that limited him most of the afternoon but showed flashes when he was out on the field.

"I think I did pretty well, I tweaked my groin a little bit so I didn't do all of the drills," Williams said. "I came out here to compete in one-on-ones and I felt I did real good.

"I just wanted to come out here and compete against the best players in the state of Texas. That's the main thing I was looking for."

Ranked 91st in Tom Lemming's Top 100 for 2012, Williams has emerged as one of the top players in a deep year at running back in the state of Texas. He recently reached the double-digit scholarship offer mark and has several out of state programs recruiting him heavily.

"I'm up to ten now," Williams said. "Michigan State just offered me for my tenth offer. It's all pretty close right now, I like Missouri right now though."

The 6-foot, 200 pound running back is aiming to commit to a school before the season and possibly even after completing spring football. Although the exact date of a commitment is up in the air, Williams is planning a few unofficial visits to become more familiar with schools.

"I'm going to try and go to Arkansas over the summer," he said. "I know I'm going to Missouri's Spring Game next Saturday. That should be fun. They're recruiting me pretty hard and I like them academically because I want to major in sports broadcasting. They have a real good journalism school."

Williams' teammate, quarterback Alec Morris also performed well at the camp, taking home Quarterback MVP honors after displaying good accuracy and arm strength throughout the day.

"It's a good surprise, I wasn't too sure coming in because this is one of the few camps I've done," Morris said. "I felt like I did well and I'm happy to hear that I was MVP."

The interest in the 6-foot-3, 220 pound quarterback has continued to pick up steam. With several quarterbacks in attendance who held multiple offers, Morris came out to the camp to prove that his skills were right there with them.

"I've actually been working with (former Texas A&M quarterback) Kevin Murray," Morris said. "He was running me through the paces and help me out at this camp. I wasn't really coming to work on anything because I really just came to show I can play at the next level."

Though Morris doesn't hold any offers at the moment, several schools are showing interest in the big signal caller.

"No offers yet but there's a bunch of schools coming down this spring (for the May Evaluation period)," he said. "Oklahoma State, Arkansas, West Virginia, Utah and a few others.

"We'll see how it goes this summer, see what schools come down and figure things out once spring ball is over."

Starts is the offensive line star

A week after several offensive linemen performed well in Los Angeles, the stop in Fort Worth was expected to equal it in terms of star power. Texas commit Curtis Riser didn't participate and Texas A&M pledge Kimo Tipoti didn't show up. In the end it didn't matter because that allowed Waco (Texas) lineman Michael Starts to perform well as both an offensive and defensive lineman.

"I like playing both sides of the ball," Starts said. "I think it's best for me to stay tuned up and in shape."

Starts was best suited as an offensive tackle, displaying a quick drop step and good frame at 6-foot-4 and 285 pounds. He also took a few reps at defensive tackle and though he definitely has the size, still appeared a bit raw at the position.

"I'd love to play defense but if coaches wants me on offense or wherever they need me, that's where I'll play," he said. "They've said they might move me back and forth."

Starts has been on the radar for awhile mostly as an offensive lineman and holds offers from every major school in the state. He is, however, seeing several out of state schools get into the mix for his recruitment but he appears a bit skittish on going to far from home.

"I have Auburn, Notre Dame and Michigan (offers)," he said. "They're all kind of far from home so I really don't know if I'm able to do that. There's a chance that I might but I don't know until I make my decision. We have (official visits) planned."

The big tackle has already taken several unofficial visits the past few months. Though recruiting is picking up among the local schools, Starts has all of the in-state schools on a level playing playing field.

"Unofficially, Baylor, Texas, Texas Tech, Texas A&M and TCU," he said. "I like them all the same. It's pretty even. I just want to fit in and be around people who accept me for who I am and stuff like that."

Notes

- LSU commit Toshiro Davis was one of several players from the state of Louisiana to make the trip north to attend the camp. He said he was solid with LSU and likes that he'll be playing in a hybrid linebacker roll with the Tigers. Davis exploded off the ball and was never really challenged in one-on-ones which is not quite what he wanted after doing much the same his junior year.

"I really came here for the competition," Davis said. "Some of the games I played last year, I really feel like the competition wasn't all that high. I want to expand my game."

- Defensive line MVP was Mansfield (Texas) defensive end Hassan Ridgeway. Offensive line MVP was Duncanville (Texas) tackle Adam Butler. Arlington (Texas) running back Tavarreon Dickerson took home position group MVP as well.

- Austin (Texas) wide receiver Cayleb Jones, Tom Lemming's number three overall recruit, showed up at the camp but did not participate. The Texas commit said he rolled his ankle two weeks ago and was being precautions.

- One of the many scat back types that made an impression was North Little Rock (Ark.) running back Altee Tenpenny. The sophomore was a bit on the lean side but was very quick and very fast. He had the top SPARQ rating at the Nike combine on Saturday and managed to run a 4.52 40-yard dash and a 37-inch vertical jump.

Posted on: April 6, 2011 5:58 pm
Edited on: April 6, 2011 6:05 pm
 

Top 100 Offers & Leaders: 1-10

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Tom Lemming's Top 100 for 2012 List was released today and it has some of the most talented recruits in the country for the upcoming class. In an ongoing series, we'll take a look at who they have offers from and who might be the leader for their commitment.

1. WR Dorial Green-Beckham (Springfield, Mo.)

Offers: Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, Illinois, Iowa, LSU, Miami, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Ole Miss, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Texas, UCLA, USC, Wisconsin.

Possible leader: Alabama.

2. QB Gunner Kiel (Columbus, Ind.)

Offers: Alabama, Cincinnati, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, LSU, Michigan, Michigan State, Missouri, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Purdue, TCU, Tennessee, USC, Wisconsin.

Possible leader: Notre Dame.

3. WR Cayleb Jones (Austin, Texas)

Committed to Texas.

4. DE Noah Spence (Harrisburg, Pa.)

Offers: Auburn, Boston College, Cincinnati, UConn, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Miami, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, N.C. State, Notre Dame, Penn State, Pitt, Rutgers, South Carolina, Stanford, Syracuse, Tennessee, USC, Vanderbilt, Virginia, Virginia Tech.

Possible leader: Penn State.


5. DE Mario Edwards (Denton, Texas)

Committed to Florida State.

6. OT John Theus (Jacksonville, Fla.)

Offers: Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, LSU, Maryland, Miami, Michigan, Mississippi State, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Rutgers, South Carolina, Texas, UCF.

Possible leader: Georgia.

7. DT Ellis McCarthy (Monrovia, Calif.)

Offers: Arizona, Cal, Colorado, Florida, Michigan, Oklahoma, Oregon State, Tennessee, UCLA, USC, Utah, Washington, Washington State.

Possible leader: USC

8. RB Johnathan Gray (Aledo, Texas)

Offers: Arkansas, Auburn, Baylor, Colorado, Oklahoma, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, USC.

Possible leader: Texas.

9. DB Landon Collins (Geismar, La.)

Offers: Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, LSU, Tennessee, Texas A&M, USC.

Possible leader: LSU.

10. RB Barry Sanders Jr.

Offers: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Auburn, Colorado, Florida State, Ole Miss, Notre Dame, Oklahoma State, Stanford, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Tulsa, UCLA.

Possible leader: Alabama.

Posted on: March 15, 2011 5:09 pm
 

MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Offer Update

Posted by Bryan Fischer

There's still over a month to go before coaches hit the road and begin to see recruits up close and personal in the May Evaluation period. Although that's usually the time when you'll see scores of scholarship offers head out, many of the MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 are up to double digit offers a little less than a year before Signing Day.

We'll be taking a glance over the next few days at the Top 100 and provide an overview of just what offers are out there for some of the top players in the upcoming class.

Quarterback Matt Davis (Houston, Texas)

Offers: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Auburn, Baylor, Clemson, Iowa, Iowa State, LSU, Oklahoma State, Pitt, Purdue, TCU, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Tulane, Tulsa, Utah.

Running back Brionte Dunn (Canton, Ohio)

Committed to Ohio State.

Offers: Cincinnati, Illinois, Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Penn State, Tennessee.

Wide receiver Travin Dural (Beaux Bridge, La.)

No offers.

Defensive tackle Quay Evans (Morton, Miss.)

Offers: Alabama, Florida State, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Southern Miss.

Defensive end Dante Fowler Jr. (St. Petersburg, Fla.)

Committed to Florida State.

Offers: Auburn, Florida, Georgia, LSU, Ohio State, USF, Tennessee, USC.

Offensive tackle Abraham Garcia (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)

Offers: Florida, Marshall, USF.

Offensive tackle Josh Garnett (Puyallup, Wash.)

Offers: Auburn, Boise State, Cal, Michigan, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Oregon, Stanford, UCLA, USC, Washington, Washington State.

Defensive tackle Eddie Goldman (Washington, D.C.)

Offers: Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Iowa, LSU, Miami, Nebraska, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Penn State, Rutgers, Stanford, Tennessee, Texas, UCLA, Virginia Tech.

Linebacker Trey Granier (Thibodaux, La.)

Committed to LSU.

Running Back Johnathan Gray (Aledo, Texas)

Offers: Arkansas, Auburn, Baylor, Colorado, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, USC.

Posted on: March 7, 2011 2:10 pm
 

All about the running backs

Posted by Bryan Fischer

The class of 2012 has several talented running back prospects but there are two from the middle of the country that might receive the lion's share of attention - and for good reason.

Aledo (Texas) running back Johnathan Gray recently narrowed down his list of colleges to Texas, Texas A&M and TCU but it was the Longhorns who were recently given the chance to shine. Gray took an unofficial visit to Austin on Saturday to see Texas go through a spring practice and came away impressed.

“Extremely physical on both sides of the ball. It was great to see everyone fighting for a job,” Gray told VypeDFW. “When you practice like that it makes everyone better.

“I’m glad I had a chance to come down. The offense they’re installing will give them a chance to be physical.”

The MaxPreps 2012 Watch List member rushed for over 3,000 yards and 59 touchdowns as a junior. Texas already landed top running back Malcolm Brown as part of their 2011 class but head coach Mack Brown has put on a full court press (it is March after all) for the speedy running back as of late.

Even Gray's father, former Texas Tech running back James Gray, was impressed on the visit, particularly by the new coaching staff.

“Having a chance to meet the new staff was important because it gave us an idea of which direction they’re going,” the elder Gray said. “Offensively, they’re trying to get back to running the football and that is impressive. Coach Harsin and Coach Applewhite seem to have a good relationship. We also had a chance to meet and talk to returning players. They were excited about the challenge ahead of them.”

A few hundred miles north of Aledo, big name Oklahoma City (Okla.) running back Barry Sanders Jr. is starting to focus on several out-of-state schools with Alabama and Florida State standing out from the pack.

“I went to Alabama’s junior day, enjoyed myself. I haven’t gone to any other schools besides FSU and 'Bama,” Sanders told Noles247.com. “The schools that standout to me are the two that I’ve visited and been on their campus, Florida State and Alabama.

“With both FSU and Alabama, they are both prestigious programs. Alabama is coming off a recent national title win and Florida State has a lot of tradition behind them as well.”

In addition to scholarship offers from the two schools, the 5-foot-10, 190 pound Sanders holds offers from just about every program in the country, including his father's alma matter of Oklahoma State. Not expected to make a decision before the season, Sanders will closely watch what the Crimson Tide and Seminoles do on the field this year before narrowing things down.

“For me, seeing what kind of offense each team runs is just as important as the relationships I have with the coaching staffs," he told the website. "I want to see how Bama looks with the loss of Mark Ingram and Julio Jones. Then with (Christian) Ponder leaving FSU, that will be interesting. It’s something I definitely want to look at with those two teams.”

Expect to hear more from both running backs as the summer camp schedule heats up and they take other unofficial visits.

Posted on: March 3, 2011 9:58 am
 

3/3 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

No honor code violations here, just recruiting links for your perusal.

- One of the top prospects in the Peach State received an offer from the University of Georgia, which pushed defensive lineman Jordan Watkins' offer list to 29.

- Stud Texas tailback Johnathan Gray has narrowed down his recruitment to Texas, Texas A&M and TCU in no particular order.

- Highly rated tight end Kent Taylor received an offer from Notre Dame. Speaking of the Irish, some more on their first commit of 2012, Tee Shepard.

- Michigan State is the latest to offer tight end A.J. Williams. Big Ten newcomer Nebraska offered receiver Monty Madaris.

- Looking back at UCLA's highly regarded class of 2010.

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com