football

Texas tidbits: Not the same Bears

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Nobody was looking for a huge change in Baylor's recruiting at the early point of the 2007 campaign, but they are now.
The Bears have already received 13 verbal commitments so far from in-state prospects and it's not just a large list of guys to add depth. There are quite a few difference makers and that was more evident after making a run of five commitments in the last five days. So what has changed in comparison to previous classes that may have ranked at the bottom of the Big 12?
SicEmSports.com publisher Jason Howell says there are a variety of factors that have changed the recruiting landscape in Waco.
"(Head coach) Guy Morriss coaching the offensive line has obviously had positive effects with Courtney Green, Anthony Morgan, and Lonnie Edwards all committing to Baylor over some big time offers," Howell said.
Aside from the guys up front, speed is definitely an emphasis with new offensive coordinator Lee Hays bringing a spread attack to the Bears. That has helped get fleet-footed pass-catchers like Stacy Williams, Krys Buerck, and Romie Blaylock to join the fold early.
Not one of those receivers has dominating size, but all bring speed to the field. Howell says that the new pass-happy offense attracts players like that more so than in the past.
"It's definitely led to some success with recruits like Blaylock and Buerck," Howell said. "Both could fit in nicely as inside receivers."
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There are certainly plenty of pass-catchers already on campus to work with but Blaylock, Williams and Buerck will get a chance to learn from the likes of Dominique Zeigler along with incoming freshmen David Gettis Ernest Smith. Numbers will surely not be a problem at that position with the new scheme in place.
Both linebackers taken so far by Baylor may not have been as highly recruited as the receivers and offensive linemen, but both Chris Francis and Chris Sanders bring quickness and versatility to the position. Again, both offense and defense has a clear theme of speed.
Greg Stewart and Loyce Means will get a shot to be big time cornerbacks for Baylor, but should redshirt a year before taking the field. Either way, this class is shaping up to be big.
Don't forget about remaining targets on the board like John Jones and G.J. Kinne.
This could be one of the better classes for Baylor in the last five years.
Red Raiders shift focus, again
First, Texas Tech had to change up the plan when top quarterback target Jarrett Lee committed to LSU and fell off the board. After offering their second quarterback, Patrick Witt, the coaching staff in Lubbock is again searching for a signal caller since Witt gave a pledge to Nebraska this past week.
The most likely candidate on the board now appears to be Little Rock (Ark.) Pulaski Academy pro-style thrower Stefan Loucks. Rice commitment Nathan Dick may also be a guy that Tech tries to get in the game with as well.
Though Red Raider legacy Brock Mansion is committed to Cal, many wondered if Mike Leach and his staff would go after the big thrower now. It appears Mansion is happy with his decision for Cal and the Red Raiders are looking elsewhere. Don't look for anything to happen on this front at this time.
Nothing is official yet, but the junior college ranks aren't out of the question for any team in search of a signal caller. However, with the depth at quarterback, Tech will most likely look for a high school quarterback they can build on rather than a guy with lesser eligibility.
Nonetheless, Tech will undoubtedly end up with a quarterback in this class. It just may be a little while longer before that name is clearly in focus.
Wilson sorts it out
It was a bit shocking when rising Texas wide receiver Corey Wilson told Rivals.com that his brother, former Oklahoma receiver Travis Wilson, had told him to keep looking around despite his high interest in the Sooners.
Apparently, it was just a big misunderstanding.
Wilson stated this week that he didn't mean to imply that the older sibling was trying to convince him to go anywhere but Oklahoma, but rather just take his time and not rush anything to enjoy the experience of being recruited.
"He was just trying to tell me to enjoy the recruiting process because it only happens once," Wilson said. "He's wasn't saying 'go to another school' or that he didn't like his time there, he was just saying he wished he had taken a little more time making his decision so he could enjoy it a little more."
Wilson is now focused on retaking his SAT to see how he scores. He shouldn't have a problem qualifying with his grades being fine.
On the recruiting side of it, many would believe it's only a matter of time before he commits to the Sooners even though Texas Tech is another school he mentions quite often.
It appears big brother is on board with that too.
Miners starting their run
UTEP is one school in the Lone Star State that certainly has dug up hidden gems. That is exactly how their 2007 class has started.
At least two commitments are out in the open including Copperas Cove, Texas sleeper defensive end Craig Wood and Athens, Texas offensive guard Simpson Rushing.
Rushing, who also held offers from Houston and SMU, apparently not only liked UTEP but his recruiter Ikaika Malloe. Malloe was involved last year with sleeper East Texas back Jason Williams and three-star defensive end Robert Williams.
Wood, just one top player on a loaded Cove squad, said location and the staff had a lot to do with his decision.
"It had a lot to do with the fact that I loved their coaching staff," Wood said. "El Paso isn't too far from home and they're a rising team."
More commitments may be just on the horizon.
Decision time
The summer time hasn't been without commitments and a few other Texas products are preparing to let the world know where they're heading. Defensive end Jacody Coleman and Brenham, Texas wide receiver Justin Daniels lead the list.
Coleman, who says that he is supposed to have a press conference on Friday, says that his final schools are Baylor, Missouri, and Iowa State. All signs appear to be pointing to the Bears, but an argument can be made for all three finalists.
Whether or not Coleman holds a conference, it appears that his commitment is merely just a day away.
Daniels, who has quite the offer list from Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Kansas State among others, appears to be looking more on location for his decision. He recently told Rivals.com that he could be committing in the next week or so to a school not that far from his hometown.
"I'm most likely going to be committing to Houston in the next week or so," Daniels said. "I'm not really considering any other school other than TCU. If they come around with an offer, then I'll think about that. I don't want to leave the state and U of H is close to home."
Also, sources are pointing to an announcement coming from Houston (Texas) Langham Creek offensive lineman Kelechi Osemele around July 4.
Stay tuned on these announcements and possibly more in the upcoming days and weeks.
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While the news surrounding Nebraska may be the Texas commitments they've reeled in, the possibilities still out there may be bigger scoop…Linebacker Brandon Herron and safety Travis Lewis continue to talk highly about the Huskers…Texas A&M still maintains in a great position with tight end Frank Avery…Avery says that the text messaging between him and Aggie coach Mark Tommerdahl is something that is a big indicator of their interest in him.
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