- William Wilkerson, RecruitingNation
CEDAR HILL, Texas -- It’s been over two months since four-star tight end Durham Smythe (Belton, Texas/Belton) gave his verbal pledge to the Longhorns, giving Texas the versatile receiving threat it was looking for in 2013.
While things have slowed down for the 6-foot-5 ½, 233-pounder, there are still facets of the recruiting process that haven’t changed even though he’s completely locked in on the Longhorns.
“There are several (coaches) that still try to (recruit me) but my coaches are really good about keeping them away,” Smythe said. “If they come by the school they push them toward my teammates. Texas A&M has come by. Stanford came by last week. I’m not looking anywhere else.”
As for the key factors that have him feeling so comfortable with Texas? The close proximity of Belton to Austin didn’t have all that much to do with it.
“Obviously the distance is nice but I’ve told people all along that it didn’t have that much to do with it,” he said. “Stanford was up there. It really came down to how comfortable I was there. They all feel the same in a way but some places just click and that’s what it felt like with Texas.”
The probability of early playing time, however, was a factor.
“Obviously you think about that,” he said. “Especially at Texas where a lot of people sit and learn the system first.”
Once Smythe gets to Austin, expect the Longhorns to use him in rolls similar to those the New England Patriots use Rob Gronkowski. That was the comparison college coaches tried to sell to Smythe during his recruitment because of his size and dual capabilities as a blocker and receiving tight end.
“I look at him and see a complete tight end, someone that can get the blocking done, line up as a slot or a regular tight end.” Smythe said. “From that position, yes, all teams are going to sell you on that. You can’t buy into that completely but from the perspective of how he plays I can see that.”
He can also see this Longhorns class turning into one of the better ones to come through Texas in some time.
“I feel like they are all good football players first of all, obviously,” he said. “A big part of the class is filling positions of need, which we are doing so far. Other than that, the guys are all good guys, which is a big factor and will eventually become a big deal in us succeeding.”
As for whether Texas will add a second tight end to this class, Smythe said he hadn't been told anything in a while.
"But it wouldn't surprise me with the depth they have," he said.