Tag:Texas A&M
Posted on: December 16, 2011 10:12 am
 

12/16 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Running back Mike Davis liked his unofficial visit to Georgia so much, he will return for an official.

Michigan State continues to recruit around the country to fill out their class of 2012.

Texas A&M commit Trey Williams wants to take a visit to Oregon.

A notebook filled with Ohio State recruiting nuggets.

 Oregon State is looking to sign several JUCOs during the early signing period.

 Recruiting is an early priority for Todd Graham at Arizona State.

 Penn State recruits face an uncertain future.

 Texas Tech gained a pair of JUCO commitments.

 Minnesota offered offensive lineman Adam Pankey.

 Wide out Monty Madaris is considering Cincinnati, Michigan, Michigan State and Kentucky.

 Stanford and Oklahoma State are the top two choices for Barry Sanders Jr.


Posted on: December 14, 2011 5:06 pm
Edited on: December 15, 2011 10:06 am
 

Boise State big winner with Big East expansion



Posted by Bryan Fischer


Amid some fanfare last Wednesday, the Big East finally announced the addition of Boise State, San Diego State, SMU, Houston and UCF to the conference. The move was designed to replace departing members Pittsburgh, Syracuse and West Virginia and marked just the latest chess move in the college realignment chess board. (Navy figures to be next to move)

The reaction, as you can probably tell from the map above, has been mostly incredulous. The Big East includes schools in the Pacific time zone? Well, regardless of how the still-shifting sands settle, the league will have to deal with things on the recruiting trail. Who makes out the best among the new members? It seems pretty clear from a quick glance.

Boise State: Two BCS bowl wins, just three losses in four years.
San Diego State: Two bowl games in 14 years but fertile recruiting area.
SMU: Three straight bowl games but head coach was in talks to go to another school, talent rich city.
Houston: Coach has left for Texas A&M.
UCF: Facing significant NCAA issues.

A lot of the reasoning behind the move to the Big East (football-only for Boise State and San Diego State) is increased access to better bowls, a better chance at making the BCS and greater television exposure. All three matter in recruiting and will no doubt be a selling point each program makes to kids. But more than that, the Broncos success coupled with the increased access to the powerhouse recruiting states of California, Texas and Florida make them a big winner - even if there's elimination of the AQ conference in the near future.

Look at the current class of 2012 for the Broncos and you can understand why they're excited: five players from California, six from Texas and a quarterback from Florida. Due to their success, the program with the blue turf has gotten quite a bit of exposure and figure to become even more of a national brand in a conference that spans four time zones. While there are certainly questions about the Big East in terms of talent and depth, it should also help dispel some concerns that they play "no one."

The other schools will enjoy benefits too. San Diego State should be better able to keep Southern California recruits closer to home and Houston/SMU should be able to get higher caliber players than they have in Conference USA. UCF has issues but is no longer little brother to USF down the road.

There's plenty to dislike about conference expansion but for schools like Boise State, things are not that bad at all from a recruiting perspective. It may seem like a patch-work job in order to keep the league together but it should bring plenty of good things for the new members.



Posted on: December 13, 2011 10:33 am
 

12/13 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

- A list of ACC recruiting commitments.

  Alabama-bound kicker Adam Griffith won a state championship -- can he kick in New Orleans in a few weeks?

  Offensive lineman Terry Davis decommitted from N.C. State.

  USC offered junior safety Max Redfield, one of the best players in their backyard.

  Boise State's class of 2012 shows how far the Broncos have come.

  Charlie Weis is already recruiting to Kansas and targeting a familiar transfer.

  Miami and Florida are busy with the recruits.

  Colorado is making a move in the recruiting rankings.

  New Texas A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin will focus on recruiting right now. One recruit wants to keep the class intact.

Commitments

  Offensive tackle Abe Abdelkarim committed to Nevada.

  Junior college defensive tackle Stetzon Bair committed to Oregon.
Posted on: December 12, 2011 8:18 pm
Edited on: December 12, 2011 8:36 pm
 

National Notes: On the way up on offense

Posted by Bryan Fischer

The class of 2012 rankings won't be updated for a few more weeks but with most high school seasons over, it's not too hard to see what players might be moving their way up in the rankings and who might slide down a little bit. Here's a look at each position group and some players that might be a little higher on the board come January.

QUARTERBACK

On the way up: Hueytown (Ala.) dual-threat quarterback Jameis Winston (Committed to Florida State)

What did he do: Winston threw for over 2,400 yards and 28 touchdowns against just two interceptions. He also rushed for over 1,000 yards and had 15 touchdowns on the ground at a pace of nearly one every 10 carries. He was co-MVP of the Elite 11 over the summer and will play in the Under Armour All-American game. He recently performed well in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic.

The case: He can't move up much further but there's little doubt that he's been the most impressive quarterback in the country since the summer on. He can make plays with his legs and has improved significantly as a passer. There's no doubt that he should be in the top 10 and there's a good case to be made for him to leap-frog Gunner Kiel as the top signal-caller overall.

Also on the way up: Maty Mauk (committed to Missouri), Zach Kline (committed to Cal)

On the way down:
Zeke Pike (committed to Auburn)

RUNNING BACK

On the way up: Houston (Texas) running back Trey Williams (committed to Texas A&M) and Daphne (Ala.) running back T.J. Yeldon (committed to Auburn).

What did they do: Williams has been putting up eye-popping numbers at Dekaney to the tune of over 3,600 yards and 45 touchdowns. He had six touchdowns in his last outing to lead his team to the state title game. Yeldon finished the regular season with close to 2,200 yards and 31 touchdowns.

The case: As much press as top-ranked running back Johnathan Gray gets in Texas, Williams has been doing just as good - if not better - in a tougher district. Both are the focal points for their teams but Williams has done extremely well as an all-around runner. Yeldon has dominated the state of Alabama on the ground and easily has been one of the best backs in the entire country this season.

Also on the way up: Mike Davis, Randy Johnson (Committed to Miami)

On the way down: Johnathan Williams (committed to Arkansas), Malin Jones (committed to Northwestern)

TIGHT END

On the way up: Buford (Ga.) tight end Kurt Freitag (committed to Alabama)

What did he do: Playing for powerhouse Buford, Freitag was an integral part of the offense in the passing game and running game this season. He had several touchdowns as a red zone threat and was a nasty blocker. He also played on defense.

The case: Freitag displayed soft hands and ran solid routes all season - drawing the attention of plenty of major colleges. He's got great size at 6-foot-3, 245-pounds and in a weak year at the position, should be moving way, way up.

Also on the way up: Sean Price (committed to USF), Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick (committed to USC).

WIDE RECEIVER

On the way up: Bellflower (Calif.) wide receiver Bryce Treggs (committed to Cal) and Carson (Calif.) receiver Darreus Rogers (committed to USC)

What did they do: Offensive line and wide receiver were extremely deep position groups out on the West Coast and Treggs and Rogers were both among the best of the best. Treggs continued to impress after a terrific summer and finished with close to 1,400 yards and 11 touchdowns. Despite being triple-teamed at times, Rogers racked up 1,251 yards and eight touchdowns, including three 200+ yard performances in Carson's biggest games. He stepped up when needed and looked primed for a jump.

The case: Both are ranked as top 15 wide outs but should be ticketed for a jump, possibly into the top 100. Treggs is not the biggest guy but still shows flashes of DeSean Jackson with his ability to get behind defenses and Rogers was a flat-out gamer.

Also on the way up: Amara Darboh (committed to Michigan), Chris Black (committed to Alabama)

On the way down: Jordan Payton

OFFENSIVE LINE

On the way up: DeSoto (Texas) offensive lineman Curtis Riser (committed to Texas) and Rancho Santa Margarita (Calif.) offensive tackle Max Tuerk (committed to USC).

The case: It's always hard to project certain linemen but these two stated why they're the top linemen in their respective states. It's a good year for versatile players at the position in Texas but Riser had most of the regular season to show why Longhorns fans and coaches are excited about him going to the 40 acres. He got hurt near the end of the season but he was a rock for a big time DeSoto squad. Tuerk started the year overshadowed in Southern California by Erik Magnuson and Kyle Murphy but out played each during the season, including Murphy head-to-head last week.

Video of the week

Since he was mentioned as someone on the rise, here's some senior highlights of running back Trey Williams.




Posted on: December 10, 2011 2:02 pm
 

Sumlin can save promising Texas A&M class

Posted by Bryan Fischer

As soon as Mike Sherman was let go as head coach at Texas A&M, many speculated that Houston head coach Kevin Sumlin would take the drive up highway 6 and take over. That's exactly what will happen, with CBSSports.com's Bruce Feldman confirming that Sumlin had accepted an offer to be the Aggies next coach on Saturday morning.

Sumlin, 47, understands the culture in College Station and knows how to recruit there. He worked under R.C. Slocum at the school and was an assistant on Bob Stoops' Oklahoma staff before moving on to Houston. Sumlin took over for Art Briles and led the Cougars to two 10-win seasons and two division titles while compiling a 35-17 record.

As Feldman notes, Sumlin has the reputation of being a good motivator, player's coach while maintaining discipline. Sherman left him some talent as the Aggies move to the SEC next season and a top 10 recruiting class for 2012. In addition to hiring a good staff, the first task that Sumlin has to do is hit the recruiting trail and try and keep the pieces for February together.

At the moment, there have only been a handful of defections following Sherman's firing and it's doubtful there will be many more. MaxPreps has A&M's class ranked ninth in the country with top players such as quarterback Matt Davis, linebacker Jordan Richmond and running back Trey Williams. After securing everybody's pledge over the next few weeks with in-home visits, Sumlin will have to go about filling the rest of the class out. He knows Texas high schools very well and can bring in a few players who maybe hadn't considered the Aggies before.

Going forward, it's obviously a step up in terms of a job. Conference USA to SEC is quite a leap on the field. Off the field, Sumlin knows the lay of the land and will have that added selling point of playing in the country's best conference. He likely will try to lock down the talent-rich Houston area and it should be fun to see how he does against Texas and other powerhouses such as LSU on the recruiting trail.

The facilities are there in College Station, it's a solid program and now they have a pretty good salesman. It shouldn't be too hard for Sumlin to save the 2012 class and hit the ground running in 2013.

Posted on: December 8, 2011 1:47 pm
Edited on: December 8, 2011 1:49 pm
 

Alabama adds another linebacker in Denzel Devall

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Alabama will play LSU in the national championship game and it appears they've already scored more often than they did in the teams first match up. The Tide reached into Tigers territory on Wednesday to pull a commitment out of Bastrop (La.) linebacker Denzel Devall.

"I just felt like it was a great fit from the get go," Devall told TideSports.com. "I like the system, the school and everything about it. Just everything about it. From all the programs, the academic programs, Coach (Nick) Saban, the coaching staff...it's the place to go if you want to be successful."

The 6-foot-2, 240-pounder held offers from Arkansas, LSU, Oklahoma and Texas A&M among others. A big fan of Saban's since his days with the Tigers, Devall has no divided loyalties with the home state team after making his commitment public.

"I'll take my official visit the weekend after we beat LSU in the national championship," he said.

Devall gives the Crimson Tide 22 verbal pledges for the class of 2012 and he becomes the fifth linebacker.


Posted on: December 4, 2011 10:46 pm
Edited on: December 4, 2011 10:46 pm
 

Texas two-step as Longhorns add to class late

Posted by Bryan Fischer

A recruit making a commitment to Texas in the month of December is pretty rare given that Mack Brown usually has the entire class locked up by the end of the spring. The Longhorns added two players over the weekend however, as Athens (Texas) athlete Kendall Sanders and Clear Springs (Texas) wide receiver Marcus Johnson.

The 6-foot-2, 190-pound Johnson has been on a wild ride the past month with his recruitment. Originally a Texas Tech commitment, he pledged to Texas A&M following the team's Thanksgiving night loss to Texas. The Longhorns got involved with a late offer and after head coach Mike Sherman was let go, it was only a matter of time before he committed elsewhere.

“I picked Texas because I've grown up loving the program,” Johnson told Hookem.com. “It's an honor to receive an offer from Texas. It really is a dream come true.”

Sanders also went through much the same process as Johnson. Maxpreps' 23rd-ranked athlete decommitted from Oklahoma State on Monday after being a part of the the Cowboys class since right after Signing Day in February. But Sanders simply had to change his pledge once the Longhorns coaching staff extended the four-star an offer.

"Really, I was like Texas?! Texas?! It was my dream," he told Orangebloods.com. "I got this opportunity to see my dream, take it or go somewhere else? So I was like, I have to go with my dream. I have to complete my dream."

Both players add to what will likely be the top wide receiver groups in the country with MaxPreps 2nd-ranked receiver Cayleb Jones and 13th-ranked Thomas Johnson. Texas has 21 commitments for the class of 2012, which is ranked second overall.

"Sanders shows very good speed to the ball, great range, and he's an aggressive defender who attacks the line of scrimmage in run support and delivers hard hits," analyst Tom Lemming said. "He can read and react with the best of them and does a good job when playing the ball. Considered to be one of the top three prospects in northeast Texas and is an explosive ball player who reads and reacts well and is as active as they come."

Posted on: December 1, 2011 10:29 pm
Edited on: December 1, 2011 10:32 pm
 

Texas A&M class could fall but maybe not by much

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Following a heart-breaking loss to rival Texas that seemed to sum up a season of frustrations, many following Texas A&M football thought it was only a matter of time before head coach Mike Sherman would be let go by the school. They didn't have to wait long, as it was announced Thursday night that he was being let go by the school.

Though it was a rough first few years in College Station, the former NFL coach seemed to hit his stride with the program in the second half of 2010 and the Aggies came into the season ranked in the top 10 with hopes of competing for a Big 12 title and BCS bowl. Several second half implosions later and Sherman is gone and the once promising A&M recruiting class for 2012 might be picked apart.

While former coach Dennis Franchione had recruited well if you go by the rankings, coaching was an issue. It took awhile for Sherman clean up and get up to speed on the recruiting front but appeared to be making significant progress. With the success of last season, 2012 and 2013 especially, appeared to breakthrough classes as the Aggies also gained the additional advantage of being able to pitch playing in the SEC to Texas players.

As with all firings, things are too early to tell with a recruiting class right now but it would surprise no one if A&M's currently 8th-ranked class of 2012 slipped a little. Currently sitting at 24 members almost two months from Signing Day, the group has top 100 players such as running back Trey Williams and a strong offensive lean to the group. With a contact period underway and plenty of coaches doing home visits, you can bet that schools have contacted Aggie commits to gauge their interest. Missouri and Oklahoma Statein particular could be someone to watch out for in terms of stealing a few commitments.

Because Sherman was an offensive coach, it possible several players will look elsewhere. Based on comments from many of the commitments however, it's clear there is a strong bond among the Aggies' class of 2012. The current staff has done a great job selling the school and despite the firing, most of the players should stick around on Signing Day. The key to keeping a top 15 (or higher) class will be on the administration and how quickly they can bring in a new head coach.

If anything, the departure of Mike Sherman will set Texas A&M back with the class of 2013 as the new coach comes in and has to quickly establish the lay of the land while maintaining what is already a very good group of players in 2012. The Aggies should be fine if they find the right guy but then again, that's been said time and time before.



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