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Thursday, August 29, 2013
Big 12 recruiting storylines: Aug. 29

By William Wilkerson

College football is finally upon us, which means it's time to take a look at the happenings in the Big 12. Two games will take place in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex -- Texas Tech traveling to Dallas to face SMU on Aug. 30, and TCU taking on LSU at Cowboys Stadium on Aug. 31 -- will be crawling with recruits. Here’s a look at the rest of the Big 12 storylines:

Huge week for TCU
There won’t be many games across the country that garner more attention this weekend than TCU’s “home game” against LSU at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington. It’s a golden opportunity for Gary Patterson and his program to begin the year with a statement victory and show recruits the type of attention and results they can receive by committing to TCU. The list of visitors won’t be fully known until Saturday at game-time, but you can bet it will be extensive. A few big names have already said they’ll be in attendance in addition to all of TCU’s commitments. They include ESPN 300 DE Myles Garrett (Arlington, Texas/Martin), ESPN 300 DE Solomon Thomas (Coppell, Texas/Coppell), ESPN 300 offensive guard Braden Smith (Olathe, Kan./Olathe South) and three-star Minnesota OG commitment Connor Mayes (Van Alstyne, Texas/Van Alstyne). ESPN Junior 300 DT Daylon Mack (Gladewater, Texas/Gladewater) and ESPN Junior 300 safety Larry Pryor (Sulphur Springs, Texas/Sulphur Springs) will be there as will Class of 2016 running back Kameron Martin (Port Arthur, Texas/Memorial). He has offers from Akron, Baylor and Texas Tech, and has visited LSU twice.

OU in Mixon’s top 5
Oklahoma’s success in landing recruits from the west coast is well documented, so it should come as no surprise that the Sooners’ have cracked the top 5 for ESPN 300 running back Joe Mixon (Oakley, Calif./Freedom).

Mixon announced his top 5 via Twitter on Monday and OU made the cut along with Cal, Florida, Oregon and Wisconsin.

The 6-foot-1, 209-pound tailback already had official visits scheduled for Cal (Sept. 13), Florida (Sept. 20), Oklahoma (Oct. 4) and Wisconsin (Oct. 11). So this was pleasant news to Oregon, which is now in line to receive his fifth visit.

Oklahoma has a few things going for it. First, Adrian Peterson is Mixon’s favorite running back. Second, the Sooners have always had success recruiting the West Coast which includes three commitments already in 2014.

The Sooners do, however, have a verbal pledge from ESPN 300 RB Samaje Perine (Pflugerville, Texas/Hendrickson). We’ll have to wait and see if that ends up helping or hurting OU.

Sheffield sets visits
ESPN Junior 300 cornerback Kendall Sheffield (Fort Bend, Texas/Marshall) will be a busy man this fall. In addition to his high school football duties, the No. 19 player overall, and No. 3 CB, will continue his further exploration of a few of his top programs.

Cecil Sheffield, Kendall’s father, announced that his son was tentatively scheduled to attend Texas A&M’s game on Sept. 7, Texas’ game Sept. 21, Notre Dame on Oct. 5 and LSU on Nov. 23. Sheffield (6-foot, 170 pounds) also said that more games would be added after the season is over.

Marshall already has offers from Baylor, Florida, Houston, LSU, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M and UCLA.

TTU travels to DFW
Yes, many Texas high schools will begin their regular seasons on Friday. But it’s not all going to be about prep football. Many eyes will be on Texas Tech’s season opener at SMU (7 p.m. on ESPN) to see how Kliff Kingsbury fairs in his head-coaching debut.

The Friday high school football slate will keep some recruits from being able to attend the game, but because it’s Week 0, not every school has a game scheduled so there will be plenty of prospects available to attend.

Texas Tech has a history of recruiting DFW well, but it can always be stronger. That’s one reason so many programs schedule games in the Metroplex in the first place: exposure.

The Red Raiders only have three commitments from the DFW area in 2014 but a good showing could lead them to more in this class.

WVU offers juco DE
The Mountaineers continued their pursuit of junior college talent by offering 2014 defensive end Will Coleman (Tyler, Texas/Tyler Junior College) on Aug. 21.

Coleman, who stands 6-foot-5 and 248 pounds, also has offers from Arizona State, Kentucky, Memphis, Southern Miss and Texas Tech, a school many feel is in the driver’s seat.

West Virginia already has commitments from three juco players in 2014 in offensive tackle Justin Scott (Woodland Hills, Calif./Pierce College), inside linebacker Devante Averette (Iowa Falls, Iowa/Ellsworth CC) and cornerback Jayion Myers (North Augusta, S.C./Hutchinson CC).

WVU has just one DE commitment in three-star Tyree Owens (Oviedo, Fla./Oviedo).