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Sunday, July 28, 2013
Texas visit, offer intrigues 2015 RB

By Max Olson

AUSTIN, Texas -- Texas brought in dozens of big-time prospects and targets for the 2014 and 2015 class for its Texas Stampede event on Saturday. Only one of those recruits went home with a new offer.

That honor went to four-star Ja’Mycal Hasty, the Longview (Texas) running back who’s ranked No. 188 in the initial ESPN Junior 300 for the class of 2015.

“It feels pretty good,” Hasty said. “I’m excited about it. I kind of had a feeling I was going to have one coming in. I’m just happy about it.”

The 5-foot-8, 184-pound running back now holds offers from Texas, Texas A&M, Baylor, TCU, Texas Tech and Houston. Following his visit to Texas for the first-ever Stampede, Hasty said all those schools are “pretty close” on his list.

There’s no doubt, though, that Texas wasn’t exactly considered a serious contender for Hasty going into the day. He’d admitted earlier this month and he wanted to take the visit simply to figure out if he had any interest in the Longhorns. Turns out, he does.

“It was exciting and fun to get around the coaches and some of the players, and we got to see them work out,” Hasty said. “It was totally different than what I expected. It was nice. It was real good.”

What compelled the Texas staff to extend an offer to Hasty? Though they’ve already offered five other backs for the class of 2015, Hasty brings a different package of skills to the table than his peers.

“The running back coach said they thought pretty highly of me and he said they really wanted me,” Hasty said. “They don’t have a guy like me on their team right now. He said they were looking for something a little different and he said I could be that guy.”

There’s no disputing Hasty’s speed makes him a weapon. He clocked a time of 4.49 in the 40-yard dash at a Dallas Nike camp this spring, and then he ran a 4.39 this summer at another combine.

He knows Texas has a talented speedster in sophomore receiver Daje Johnson, but Hasty believes he brings something different to the running back spot.

“The guys on their team are 220-plus (pounds),” Hasty said. “I’m 180, 185. It’s size, quickness and speed, I guess.”

Hasty got an opportunity to meet up with a distant (and famous) relative of his during his time on Texas’ campus. He said former Longhorn great Earl Campbell is his mother’s second cousin, and he said getting to meet Campbell again and take pictures with him was a special occasion.

For most of the day, Hasty said he tagged along with defensive tackle Daylon Mack (Gladewater, Texas/Gladewater) and linebacker Malik Jefferson (Mesquite, Texas/Poteet). The trio are all members of the “Fab Five” pact that Mack created this summer.

“That’s who I was hanging with pretty much the whole day, Malik and Daylon,” Hasty said. “It was real fun, especially being with those guys.”

Mack has said in the past he’s confident Hasty will end up at Texas A&M and didn’t think Hasty would have much interest in UT, even if that offer did come.

Hasty disagrees, especially after what he saw Saturday.

“I mean, I don’t know why he feels that way,” Hasty said. “I’ll have to see how things play out. I have two more years. The guys these teams pick up, a coaching change -- anything can change.”

The visit isn’t looking so easy now that every major program in the state has offered him a scholarship. Hasty found himself pleasantly surprised by what the Longhorns have to offer.

“Coach [Mack] Brown, he’s real nice and real cool,” he said. “Same way across the board with everyone on the coaching staff. We got a chance to look at the campus, and the campus is real nice. I loved it."