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Friday, May 17, 2013
Recruiting notes: Harris names top seven

By Sam Khan Jr.

True to his word, Bossier City (La.) Parkway quarterback Brandon Harris named his top schools after spring practice concluded.

Brandon Harris
Texas A&M made the top seven list for four-star quarterback Brandon Harris.
The four-star quarterback, who is ranked fifth nationally among 2014 dual-threat passers, wasted little time making that list public, doing so late Thursday night, just hours after Parkway's spring football game concluded.

The Aggies were among the seven schools that made the cut for Harris, who has double-digit offers and has seen his stock soar this spring as schools like Alabama, LSU and Ohio State have thrown their hats in the ring.

The 6-foot-2, 186-pound Harris, who spoke with GeauxTigerNation's Gary Laney earlier this week, wants to make his decision by July 18.

In addition to Texas A&M, the schools filling out his top seven are Alabama, Auburn, Baylor, LSU, Mississippi and Ohio State. Harris, who released his list on his Twitter account late Thursday night, indicated there is no particular order for his list currently and that he intends to visit all seven this summer.

2014 LBs Mabin, Shelley, evaluated

While many Texas schools are holding their spring football games next week, Spring (Texas) Klein Oak is one of the handful who had theirs this week. The Panthers held their spring game on Thursday and it was a chance for 2014 linebackers Josh Mabin and Ja'Von Shelley to work in front of a pair of Aggies coaches.

Texas A&M defensive coordinator Mark Snyder and special teams coordinator Jeff Banks stopped by Klein Oak to see Mabin and Shelley, who have been Aggies targets. Both prospects have made a couple trips to College Station, Texas for unofficial visits to Texas A&M.

Both played about a quarter on Thursday night.

"They just wanted to see me fly around, so I feel like that's what I gave them," Mabin said afterward. "They could see that my knee was good, I'm flying around, running full speed."

Neither of the prospects have an A&M offer at the moment, but the Aggies have been showing interest. Texas A&M linebackers coach Mark Hagen was at Klein Oak last week.

Mabin said he communicated with the coaches via direct message on Twitter after the scrimmage and was told that the coaches were "very impressed," and that they would keep him posted.

Shelley said he'll reach out to the A&M staff either today or sometime next week.

Injury slows 2014 Houston TE

As he expected, Houston Kinkaid 2014 tight end Mavin Saunders saw Texas A&M return to his school to evaluate him this week, but unfortunately, circumstances prevented him from working out.

Saunders suffered a hamstring injury that kept him out of practice on Wednesday, when Texas A&M special teams coordinator and tight ends coach Jeff Banks was in attendance. Stanford special teams coordinator Pete Alamar was also at Kinkaid on Wednesday. Both Banks and Alamar got a glimpse of 2015 quarterback J.T. Granato (Houston/Kinkaid) while there, as well as other notable Kinkaid prospects.

As for Saunders, he did pick up a new offer on Thursday -- from Ohio State. Buckeyes cornerbacks coach Kerry Coombs was at Kinkaid on Monday to watch Saunders and the Buckeyes pulled the trigger on an offer on Thursday. Saunders said that Ohio State has moved to the top of his list.

“They just jumped to the top by far," Saunders said. "It’s a great school with a great coach. I’m still leaving everything open, but right now they’re at the top."

The 6-5, 233-pound Saunders holds double-digit offers, including ones from Florida State, Michigan State, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma. Florida, Oregon, Texas and Texas A&M are among those that have showed interest but not yet offered Saunders.

A&M scouting 2014 Dallas DE/LB

The Aggies are scouring the state for linebacker prospects and have shown interest in a defensive end who could potentially be an outside linebacker at the next level.

Dallas South Oak Cliff 2014 linebacker Silvester Hayes is a player who has seen his offer list grow this spring. Hayes has 11 offers, including in-state offers from Houston, North Texas, SMU and Texas Tech.

"Texas A&M has come by to see him," South Oak Cliff defensive coordinator and recruiting coordinator R.J. Bond said.

Hayes is a relatively raw prospect. The 6-3, 214-pounder has only played organized football

Plenty of other schools are showing interest in Hayes currently.

"Last year was his first year to play football since he was 8 years old," Bond said. "No middle school, ninth or 10th grade. in 11th grade he was on varsity. So I think his best football is still in front of him."

As a hybrid defensive end/outside linebacker, Bond said he thinks Hayes could play multiple positions, but he has heard a specific comparison from the Aggies.

"The name I was hearing from A&M was 'Von Miller-type,'" Bond said. "He's freakishly athletic."

Aggies eyeing Houston WR?
A receiver that has been getting some attention from college coaches this spring will be attending a Texas A&M camp next month.

Houston Bellaire 2014 receiver Ryheem Malone said Texas A&M offensive coordinator Clarence McKinney was at Bellaire on Tuesday and that the two have been in contact.

"We were already talking through Facebook," Malone said. "We've been keeping in touch since he was at UH. He kind of liked me so we've been in touch since then."

Malone said McKinney invited him up to the Aggies' June 2 camp so that he can get a closer look.

"He told me he liked me a lot, how I'm explosive and that they could use me at the slot and at punt returner," Malone said.

The 5-8, 158-pound receiver holds an offer from Nevada and interest from several schools. Boise State could be close to offering, Malone said.

Malone said he plans to attend a college camp in Houston on June 1, possibly Baylor's, before heading to College Station on June 2. Malone said he likes Texas A&M.

"That feels good [to get interest from Texas A&M] because a couple of my friends go there: Reggie [Chevis] and Toney Hurd," Malone said. "It's a good place to be."

A 2016 WR to watch

A name not known to many yet but that figures to be on the radar in the future is 2016 receiver Jeremy Smith (Missouri City, Texas/Thurgood Marshall).

Smith, a 6-2, 178-pound freshman, spent the season on Marshall's varsity squad last fall as a freshman, playing both quarterback and receiver. With notable size, the soon-to-be sophomore has had plenty of schools ask about him when they've stopped in to see other Marshall prospects, namely 2015 cornerback Kendall Sheffield and athlete J.W. Ketchum.

"Oklahoma, Utah, Texas, Texas A&M, Colorado," Smith said are the schools that have inquired about him this spring.

Texas A&M offensive coordinator Clarence McKinney came by in recent weeks, Smith said.

Smith, who also participates in track, will again split time between playing receiver and quarterback this fall for Marshall, but projects as a receiver at the college level.