This past recruiting season, Adrian Peterson, was the nation’s No. 1 player and the top overall running back. There is another player from the state of Texas that could fight for that type of recognition in the Class of 2005. His name is Jamaal Charles of Port Arthur (Texas) Memorial and he’s a sight to see.
Charles earned Port Arthur News’ super team most valuable player honors, first-team all-district, first-team all-Greater Houston and honorable mention all-state honors as a junior. He also earned the Willie Ray Smith Award for the best offensive player in Southeast Texas in 2003.
With his stats, it’s easy to see why he’ll be one of the best players in Texas and one of the nation’s top running back recruits. Charles rushed for 2,051 yards on 281 carries for a 7.3-yard average. He also scored 27 touchdowns.
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It’s those stats, along with his 6-foot-1, 185-pound frame and a solid 4.4-seconds in the 40-yard dash that has already allowed him to earn scholarship offers from Alabama, Arkansas, Houston, LSU, Oklahoma State, Texas and Texas A&M.
He also lists Iowa, Oklahoma, Michigan State, Texas Tech, SMU, Kansas State, Miami, Florida State and Missouri as teams that are sending him regular correspondence at this point.
“My top six teams are LSU, Texas, Texas A&M, Houston, Arkansas and Iowa,” Charles said. “I’m going to pick a school based upon playing time, location, and the coaches. I feel really good about the two in-state schools, Texas and Texas A&M, and they’re really recruiting me hard. And I’ve always followed them and LSU.”
Charles does have some impressive family ties to the Tigers. His cousins, Raynesha and Rashonta LeBlanc, ran track and played basketball at LSU and his brother, Shanderrick Charles is a running back at SMU.
“I compare my running style to Eric Dickerson,” Charles said. “I just go out there and get it done like he does every night.”
All of which makes him one of the hottest targets in the Lone Star State for 2005.