Following the 2011 season, Belton, Texas tight end Durham Smythe saw his recruiting stock get as anyone in the country, and college scholarships began to pile up in the office of Belton head coach Rodney Southern.
After taking a look at his options Smythe decided to commit to the Texas Longhorns, becoming the 13th pledge of the Longhorns 2013 recruiting class in early March.
Smythe was all smiles that day, but there have been some second thoughts here and there. There was a little smoke behind the scenes, and then today the Belton standout decided it was time to get a load off of his mind.
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"I said a lot today that I have an extremely high amount of respect for the program, for the coaches, for the players, and everyone, but for the last couple of months I've really been able to evaluate things," Smythe said. "I've been able to gain a lot more information than I had during the one month whirlwind of a recruitment that I had. When I processed all of that I began to realize that maybe personally Texas wasn't the best fit for me. I have come to that realization over the last couple of weeks, and although I do have a lot of respect for the program I think I need to evaluate things a little bit and see if I can find a better fit for me."
The decision was not one of haste and while former co-offensive coordinator Bryan Harsin, who was Smythe's primary recruiter, leaving for Arkansas State did have an impact, this was a decision he has had on his mind.
"It was a little bit of a factor but not a huge one," Smythe said. "Obviously coach Harsin was one of the main coaches who recruited me because of his scheme. That was a small factor but to be completely honest I have been thinking for awhile that Texas wasn't the best fit for me."
Now the search for the "best fit" has begun, but what does that mean?
"Right now what I'm going to do is evaluate things for a couple of weeks and see who still has interest and things like that," Smythe said. "Then hopefully I can take a couple of visits. I think that was something that was also missing. I didn't really get to take many visits. I didn't really get to see many other places besides Texas and that short one to Stanford in the spring before I made my decision. So really the plan right now is to evaluate things and maybe schedule some visits and check everything out and make the best decision for me."
Are there any schools on his mind?
"I have talked to Stanford a little bit. I think I might take one there," Smythe said. "Florida has been talking to me during the day-to-day. I'm not sure about that one yet because I didn't really get to talk to them last spring. I'll have to look into that one a little bit. There have been schools who have already contacted my school so really I'll have to look that over and kind of go from there."
One school which has been linked to Smythe recently has been Notre Dame, and the Irish is a program he is watching.
"I'll look into that," Smythe said. "I've stayed in touch with coach (Kerry) Cooks who recruits this area and really what they're doing right now is they are at a point where they have limited scholarships so they're going to have to let a few things play out. I'll keep them in the loop. I still have interest in them and if things open up and they have room that will be another option i look into."
As for Texas, it does not appear that he will be reconsidering his decision to decommit.
"I think at this point it is time to move in a different direction," Smythe said. "I say that because I've had so much time to really get to know the area and there's so much that is positive about the area and the program, but at the end of the day I really need to find the place that is the best fit for me and after evaluating things for awhile I do not think that is at Texas."