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February 4, 2008

Rivals5: Top stories in Texas

Rivals5: Top stories in Florida | Top stories in California | Super sleepers | State battles

In a talent-laden, football-crazed state like Texas, recruiting storylines seem to surface on a daily basis.

During coverage of the 2008 class, there were plenty of hot topics in the Lone Star State. Rivals.com breaks down the top five stories in Texas for the class of 2008.

Rivals5: Top stories in Texas
1. The new regimes
2007 was a wild year in college football from top to bottom so it was no surprise that the coaching carousel spun fast and often. Due to the turnover, several schools were left sitting behind the eight ball on the recruiting front, but several new staffs in the state of Texas have hit the ground running.

Mike Sherman has Texas A&M planted firmly in the top 20 of the team recruiting rankings. Art Briles has pulled in some major steals at Baylor. Briles' replacement Kevin Sumlin continues to put together a very solid class at Houston and June Jones has made huge strides in just a matter of weeks at SMU.

With the amount of talented recruiting staffs set in place following the turnover, the state of Texas just got a lot harder to recruit.

2. A Sooner presence
To find the driving force behind Oklahoma's No. 5 recruiting class look no further than the state of Texas.

After picking up six of the top 50 players in Texas last year, 2008 saw Oklahoma land five of the state's top 20.

Included in those five players are the top three players in the state, R.J. Washington, Jermie Calhoun and Stephen Good. As always, the Oklahoma class is bolstered by the presence of Texas talent but this year the talent includes some of the best the state has to offer.

3. Dean's list
By committing to UCLA all the way back in April, Katy running back Aundre Dean seemingly ended the suspense in his recruitment before it really got going. However, after Karl Dorrell was let go by UCLA, Dean opened things back up and what has resulted has been an unpredictable ride.

Dean looked to be favoring Alabama before offensive coordinator Major Applewhite left Tuscaloosa and while Texas A&M had long been out of the race suddenly the Aggies were very much in the mix. Now, seemingly Dean is once again solid to UCLA but there's no telling what Signing Day will have in store.

4. The Skyline crew
With five players preparing to sign major Division I scholarships it was no surprise to see Dallas (Texas) Skyline make a deep run into the Texas state playoffs. What has been almost as entertaining as the Skyline group on the field has been their recruitment off of it. Outside linebacker Alfred Dupree took his name out of the hat early with a commitment to Oklahoma State and he never wavered. However Spencer Reeves, Keanon Cooper, DaJon McKnight and Troy Stoudermire have all taken several official visits, often together and kept many schools guessing as to where they would end up.

Many saw the four as at least a partial package deal and in the end Minnesota was lucky enough to garner commits from three of the four while Keanon Cooper stepped out on his own with a verbal to Texas Tech.

5. UM gets McGuffie and more
Houston (Texas) Cy-Fair's Sam McGuffie has been one of the most polarizing and talked about recruits in recent memory out of the state of Texas. His highlight-reel runs and massive production made his recruitment a national phenomenon but Michigan was able to come down to the midlands to land the prospect.

The Wolverines were also able to land to more prized Texas recruits in the No. 5 player in the state, Darryl Stonum and another top all-purpose back, Terrence Robinson. After landing the top Texas player last season in Ryan Mallet, the Wolverines have confirmed an impressive presence in the Lone Star State.



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