- Max Olson, ESPN Staff Writer
Four-star guard Caleb Benenoch (Katy, Texas/Seven Lakes) has enjoyed the courting that began when he decommitted from Michigan State last month, but two schools still remain out front for his pledge.
Benenoch told HornsNation he considers Texas and Oklahoma his two favorites so far, but several new schools have entered the mix since he ended his pledge to MSU on June 12.
“After Texas and OU, I like Northwestern and I like Texas A&M too. That’s where I’m at right now,” he said. “I’m going to visit Stanford, take a trip to Baylor, Texas A&M, hopefully Arkansas and possibly a return trip to Texas.”
But which school is on top for the 6-foot-6, 321-pound lineman?
“As far as No. 1, it’s kind of a mix-up,” he said. “I like UT and I like Oklahoma a lot. I don’t think there’s really a No. 1 right now.”
Benenoch has remained in touch with Texas commit Jake Raulerson (Celina, Texas/Celina) and the Longhorn coaching staff since attending their June 10 camp.
Since UT coaches rolled out the red carpet for him that day, Benenoch has known he’s a high priority on their recruiting board.
“I message all those coaches back and forth on Facebook -- coach [Oscar] Giles, coach [Mack] Brown and coach [Stacy] Searels --and I talk to Searels about once a week,” he said. “We’re keeping in good communication.”
The No. 19 ranked guard is planning to camp at Stanford later this month. The Cardinal signed three ESPN 150 offensive linemen for their 2012 class and have been slow to offer linemen for this class. Benenoch hopes to prove he deserves their attention.
“They signed a really good offensive line class last year,” he said. “They told me I didn’t have to come to their camp, but I figured it couldn’t hurt. I’m going to show them what I’m about.”
Arkansas has been recruiting Benenoch from the very beginning but didn’t offer until after he pledged to Michigan State. Benenoch said his strong bond with offensive line coach Chris Klenakis is the biggest reason why he hopes to check out Fayetteville.
Coaches from Michigan State also recently got back in touch with their former commit and are still hoping he’ll attend their game against Notre Dame.
Benenoch has appreciated the fact that Texas coaches haven’t pressured him for a quick decision, and he’s not in a hurry to pull the trigger. He’s determined to make his next commitment to be his final one.
“It’ll probably take my official visits for me to decide,” he said. “That’s what I think right now.”
3hMax Olson and Jake Trotter
5dJake Trotter, Brandon Chatmon and Max Olson