By now, the good college recruiters know that the way to Devon Allen’s heart isn’t football. It’s track.
The Phoenix Brophy Prep three-star recruit wants to play receiver in college, but good luck in getting him to give up his winter, spring and summer sport.
This spring, Allen set Arizona state high school records in the 110-meter high hurdles (13.52 seconds) and 300 hurdles (36.36).
He won state titles in both events and finished third in the 110 hurdles at the USA Junior Outdoor Championships last month.
“I’m one of the nation’s best hurdlers, and I’m going for the national record in the hurdles next year,” he said. “Track is a big thing in my life.”
And that’s a good thing for Texas. The Longhorns coaching staff has been talking with the 6-foot, 187-pound wideout this summer, and he’s considering taking an official visit to Austin this fall.
Texas can thank Marquise Goodwin for Allen’s initial interest. It’s not hard to sell your school’s ability to develop two-sport stars when one of your senior receivers is heading to the Olympics.
“That definitely is appealing,” Allen said. “I’m hoping to end up at the Olympic trials if everything falls into place, which is what Marquise Goodwin did in the long jump. That’s definitely something I looked at.”
UT receivers coach Darrell Wyatt got in touch with Allen last month and has continued to pursue the receiver.
“I talked to him about a week ago,” Allen said. We spoke on the phone for 30 or 45 minutes and had a good conversation. He told me about Texas and everything they’re doing.
“He said that basically if I was really interested, they’ll definitely offer me. I told them I’m interested. I’m sure if I continue to show interest in them, I’ll end up with a scholarship.”
Allen trimmed his list of favorite schools down to 15 on Tuesday, and Texas made the cut along with Arkansas, Arizona State, Cal, LSU, Michigan, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, Oregon, Stanford, UCLA, USC and Washington.
He’ll be ready to cut that long list down again by the end of the July, after he takes five unofficial visits. Allen is going to Stanford and Cal next weekend and visiting Ohio State, Michigan and Notre Dame the following weekend.
He considered including a stop in Austin to his summer tour, but so far those plans haven’t come to fruition.
“I haven’t really gotten a chance to set up a visit there,” Allen said. “I think that in the next couple months, if I don’t take an unofficial, I’ll probably take an official visit there. They’re one of my top schools right now.”
Allen caught 44 passes for 844 yards and 14 touchdowns as a junior and is ranked 15th among prospects in the state of Arizona.
Texas already has verbal pledges from wideouts Jake Oliver (Dallas/Jesuit) and Jacorey Warrick (Houston/Cypress Falls) and remains in contention for former commit Ricky Seals-Jones (Sealy, Texas/Sealy). But there’s room for one more.