Recruiting for the class of 2008 is not yet in the books but college coaches are already thinking about the class of 2009. In turn, Rivals.com couldn't wait until after National Signing Day before getting a jump on the next group of seniors.
This weekend kicks off the first set of the Rivals.com Five-Star Academies and what better place to place to open things up than the talent-rich state of Texas. The two events in two days will be featuring the best of the class of 2009 in the Lone Star State.
Over the course of the two days, Rivals.com will be compiling AMP video interviews with some of Texas' premiere talent, observations on which players - sleeper and star alike - pass the eyeball test, player features and stories as well as photo galleries.
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While the Five-Star Academies should be a great opportunity to discover some under-the-radar prospects from the area, it will also be a chance to catch up with some of the names that have already separated themselves as juniors.
On Saturday afternoon, SMU's campus will welcome newly-anointed Rivals100 member Ryan Mossakowski. The 6-foot-5 signal-caller wowed everyone in attendance at the U.S. Army All-American Combine and managed to toss up close to 3,000 yards passing as a junior.
Mossakowski will be joined by another combine all-star as 6-foot-4, 270-pound offensive tackle Kyle Clark is expected to make an appearance. Clark is out of Denton, Texas and was honored on the All-Combine team in San Antonio for his work on the offensive line.
Some other notables scheduled to appear in Dallas include Terdema Ussery out of Dallas (Texas) St. Mark's, a 6-foot-3 wide receiver that already boasts an offer from Stanford as well as Pflugerville's Alex Okafor who has Nebraska and Texas Tech offers to his credit.
There will be more than enough talent to go around in Houston as well.
Five-star quarterback prospect Russell Shepard will be one of the headliners of the weekend and he will be bringing along his teammate Hasan Lipscomb. Both Shepard and Lipscomb have the talent to be among the most highly-recruited players in the nation for the class of 2009.
Shepard will be joined by teammates as well as family members. Cousin and fellow Rivals100 member Craig Loston is scheduled to attend the event hosted by the University of Houston. Loston's Aldine (Texas) Eisenhower teammate Greg Timmons is also included on the roster, adding another Rivals100 member to the list.
SMU and the University of Houston will be hosting current stars and future stars alike this weekend and Rivals.com will be there every step of the way.