Texas Longhorns: Speedy Noil

Shifting power: Texas 

January, 23, 2014
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Texas A&M has gone through and overcome a major case of the “you can’ts.”

You can’t leave the Big 12 and compete in the SEC.

You can’t win with Kevin Sumlin, a coach off a successful stint at Houston in mid-major conference play.

You can’t outrecruit your archrival Texas. You can’t win. Period.

For every negative critique, Texas A&M has managed to silence the doubters. With everything positive that’s happened with the Aggies the last two seasons, this year’s recruiting class may be the biggest accolade next to winning back-to-back bowl games under Sumlin. With 21 commits – including 10 ESPN 300 players -- Texas A&M has the No. 2 recruiting class in the nation, just behind Alabama.

Under Armour Early Offer 

December, 30, 2013
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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily morning dose of recruiting.

Today’s Early Offering is coming to you from the Under Armour All-America Game. Here’s a sample of some of the top news from the event, including a look at who stood out on the first day of practices and a quarterback who hopes to make a big impression.

No. 1 preps for announcement
Seven of the nation’s top prospects will commit live during the Under Armour All-America Game on Jan. 2 (ESPN, at 4 p.m. ET), including the No. 1 player in the country, running back Leonard Fournette (New Orleans/Saint Augustine). Fournette has stuck with his top two of Alabama and LSU and said both school’s hats will be in front of him when he announces. A Texas hat will be there too, but it’s down to the Tigers and Tide. Fournette said he’s tired of getting asked where he’s going to end up, but that thankfully will end in a few days. “It is just something I want to get off my shoulders,” he said. “Everybody has been nagging me about a thousand times. At the end of the day, it’s where I’m going to be most successful and most comfortable at.”


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Early Offer: Michigan quickly moves on 

November, 15, 2013
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The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: After missing out on Da'Shawn Hand, Michigan didn’t waste time trying to fill its need at defensive end; can Texas become a factor for the nation’s No. 1 prospect?, and how many elite players are still up for grabs?

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The Early Offer: A&M’s setting sells 

September, 16, 2013
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The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's latest feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: Texas A&M might have lost the game to Alabama, but the Aggies still could be winners on the recruiting trail; Texas' struggles could ramp up the pressure to look around for players who made early commitments to the Longhorns; and regardless of how the referees handled the final seconds of the Wisconsin-Arizona State game, the victory will pay off big time for the Sun Devils.

Lessons Learned: SPARQ championships 

July, 1, 2013
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BEAVERTON, Ore. -- The Opening got underway on Monday with SPARQ testing, as the nation's top football players competed in the 40-yard dash, vertical jump, 20-yard short shuttle and kneeling power ball throw. The 10 best returned for the finals, with Speedy Noil (New Orleans/Edna Karr) taking home the championship. Here's a closer look at what we learned during the day:

Speedy is, well, speedy

Speedy Noil
David Helman/ESPN.comSpeedy Noil lived up to his name during SPARQ testing, posting the second-best score of all time.
Coming into The Opening, Noil was a prospect whom everyone was excited to see. Noil is ranked as the No. 8 prospect in the country, but his athleticism and speed were the two aspects that people were hoping to see.

He didn't disappoint on Monday, recording a 153.51 SPARQ score, which was the second-highest score ever behind Mike Mitchell from the 2012 SPARQ Finals.

Noil ran a 4.4 40, threw the power ball 41 feet and wowed everyone watching when he jumped 45.3 inches in the vertical jump.

And as his No. 8 overall ranking shows, Noil is far from just a freak athlete who can’t play.

At 6-foot, 176 pounds, Noil holds offers from Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, Ohio State, Oregon, Texas and USC, among others. The ESPN Hot Board has the five-star prospect predicted to LSU, but he remains uncommitted at this point. -- Tom VanHaaren


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The Opening, presented by Nike, will feature 162 of the best high school football players in the country. The event, which will include linemen, 7-on-7 and SPARQ testing competitions, is set to run from June 30 to July 3 at the Nike headquarters in Beaverton, Ore.

The following events from The Opening will be televised on ESPNU:

July 1: SPARQ Rating National Championship, 7 p.m.-8:30 p.m. ET

July 2: 7-on-7 Pool Play, 9 p.m.-11:30 p.m. ET

July 3: Linemen Challenge Finals and 7-on-7 semifinal and championship games, 9 p.m.-midnight ET

The players will be divided in to six teams -- Alpha Pro, Apocalypse, Field Generals, Land Sharks, Super Bad and Vapor Carbon. Here is a closer look at how the teams match up.

Team: Alpha Pro
Coaches: Offensive coordinator Jordan Palmer, defensive coordinator Hardy Nickerson

The Alpha Pro team will have plenty of targets to spread the ball around. Ermon Lane and Tyler Luatua, the No. 1-ranked receiver and tight end in the country respectively, bring size and playmaking ability to the passing game. ESPN 300 athletes Corey Holmes, Jalen Hurd, John "JuJu" Smith, Ja'Von Harrison, and Derrell Scott are all explosive offensive weapons.

Defensively Alpha Pro is led by Andrew Brown, the No. 1-ranked defensive tackle in the country, ESPN 150 cornerback Damon Webb, defensive end Andrew Williams, Ohio State linebacker commit Dante Booker and LSU cornerback commit Chris Hardeman.

Complete Alpha Pro roster.

Team: Apocalypse
Coaches: Offensive coordinator Adam Tafralis, defensive coordinator Donovin Darius

The first thing that jumps out about team Apocalypse is the talent in the defensive front seven. Team Apocalypse will be led by five-star defensive end Da'Shawn Hand and inside linebacker Raekwon McMillan. Hand, from Woodbridge, Va., is the No. 4-ranked player in the country, while McMillan was recently bumped up to a five-star linebacker. Joining Hand and McMillan along the front seven are ESPN 300 defensive linemen Anthony Moten and Ainuu Taua, and linebackers D.J. Calhoun and Rashaan Evans.

Offensively, team Apocalypse has no shortage of playmakers. ESPN 300 wide receivers Artavis Scott, K.D. Cannon and Michiah Quick will provide explosiveness in the passing game, while athletic running backs Joe Mixon and Royce Freeman will provide athletic and reliable targets out of the backfield.

Complete Apocalypse roster.

Team: Field Generals
Coaches: Offensive coordinator Charlie Frye, defensive coordinator Michael Fletcher

Seven-on-seven events are always geared towards the offense, but with five-star defensive back Adoree' Jackson, No. 3-ranked safety Jamal Adams, and ESPN 300 cornerback Adarius Pickett in the secondary, the Field Generals should more than hold their own. New Ohio State defensive end commit Jalyn Holmes and the No. 6-ranked defensive end in the country, Solomon Thomas, will be two to watch along the defensive line.

Offensively, the Field Generals are led by ESPN 300 offensive guard Damien Mama, ESPN 300 wide receivers Austin Roberts and Thaddeus Snodgrass and explosive Notre Dame running back commit Elijah Hood.

Complete Field Generals roster.

Team: Landsharks
Coaches: Offensive coordinator Craig Nall, defensive coordinator Keith Bulluck

The Landsharks have some big-time talent along each line of scrimmage. Led by five-star offensive tackle Cameron Robinson, the Landsharks also feature ESPN 300 offensive guard Corey Martinez. ESPN 300 defensive linemen Gerald Willis III and Thomas Holley, as well as ESPN 300 defensive end Chad Thomas, will form a very physical and athletic defensive line.

In the secondary, the Landsharks will have three defensive backs -- Arrion Springs, Chris Lammons and Tony Brown -- that are ranked among the top 85 players in the country. The defense also features ESPN 150 linebacker Nyles Morgan.

Offensively, explosive running backs Dalvin Cook, a Florida commit, and Racean Thomas form a dangerous tandem out of the backfield, and wide receivers Travis Rudolph and Jalen Harvey are solid receiving threats.

Complete Landsharks roster.

Team: Superbad
Coaches: Offensive coordinator Dennis Gile, defensive coordinator Harold Nash Jr.

The Superbad defense line is led by five-star defensive end Lorenzo Carter and ESPN 150 defensive tackle Bijhon Jackson. The linebacking corp is stacked with three ESPN 300 members, including Clifton Garrett, Christian Miller and Edwin Freeman. Cornerback Jalen Tabor is the No. 19-ranked player in the country.

Offensively, Superbad has a huge advantage with the No. 1-ranked prospect in the country, running back Leonard Fournette. This team is loaded on offense, with wide receivers Drake Harris, Josh Malone and Speedy Noil all in the mix.

Complete Superbad roster.

Team: Vapor Carbon
Coaches: Offensive coordinator George Whitfield, defensive coordinator Chris Gizzi.

Vapor Carbon will be tough to throw against with defensive backs Quin Blanding, Naijiel Hale and Ed Paris roaming the field. The linebacker group is just as impressive, with Ohio State commit Kyle Berger, Kain Daub and Dillon Bates all leading the way.

The offense for Vapor Carbon could be lethal with running back Joseph Yearby and Nick Chubb in the backfield. Spreading out wide receivers T.V. Williams, Justin Brent and tight end Ian Bunting on the outside could prove to be an awesome combination for this squad.

Team Vapor Carbon has a lot of pieces to make a long run in the 7-on-7 tournament, but then again, every team is stacked in this competition.

Complete Vapor Carbon roster.
Welcome to The Heard, HornsNation’s weekly in-depth look inside the never-ending world of Longhorns recruiting with news, notes and interesting tidbits on the latest happenings around the program. We release this every Friday.

Talk about it in our forum and, if there’s a recruit out there you’d like to hear more from, let us know.
  • A look at visitors for Texas' camp this weekend
  • Texas in top 5 for juco wide receiver
  • Campbell will miss junior season
  • Texas still an option for Clemson commit?
  • 2015 in-state receiver set for huge season
  • Schools still pursuing DT Garnett
  • WR Joe '100 percent' on pledge

Read The Heard after the jump.


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#BlueChipBattles: ESPN 150 release edition

April, 19, 2013
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Speedy Noil, Adoree Jackson, Da'Shawn HandStudent Sports, ESPN, ESPNSpeedy Noil, Adoree Jackson and Da'Shawn Hand are three of the most coveted recruits in the Class of 2014.
#BlueChipBattles Insider: RecruitingNation summoned its writers from around the country to outline the recruiting battles for the ESPN 150's top 10 prospects.

Plus, rank the battles in SportsNation.

#TopFBMixtapes: Athlete mixtapes are all the rage in this highlight-crazed era of sports. We reached out to our Twitter followers to find out which 2014 football stars had the best highlight reels on YouTube, then had our staff rank and comment on the top submissions.

Tom Luginbill writes Insider: After talking to many coaches across the country and hearing their frustrations, here are their five biggest complaints about homemade highlight videos.

Watch List WR Speedy Noil taking it slow 

March, 19, 2013
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The legend of Devante “Speedy” Noil has been building for years and years, and the latest chapter is about as impressive as it gets.

As a junior, the coveted New Orleans Edna Karr athlete accounted for 3,975 total yards and 50 touchdowns -- 21 of them rushing -- as the program’s unstoppable lefty quarterback. Edna Karr went 14-0 and finally won the state title game it had lost in 2010 and 2011. It was, for all intents and purposes, a dream season.


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Speedy NoilMax Olson/ESPN.comNew Orleans wide receiver Speedy Noil is being pursued by some of the best programs in the nation, so Texas has its work cut out for it in its attempt to make him part of the 2014 class.
AUSTIN, Texas -- The Longhorns are extremely fortunate to reside in one of the most fertile recruiting states in the country. And, for the longest time, they’ve reigned supreme when it comes to keeping the cream of that crop in Austin.

They are still getting their fair share, but the success of Texas A&M and the SEC moving in on even more in-state prospects has made it increasingly more difficult.

So far this recruiting cycle, more so than in years past, the Longhorns have targeted numerous out-of-state recruits with hopes that they’ll choose Texas.

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Welcome to The Heard, HornsNation’s weekly in-depth look inside the never-ending world of Longhorns recruiting with news, notes and interesting tidbits on the latest happenings around the program. We’ll release this every Thursday.

Talk about it in our forum and, if there’s a recruit out there you’d like to hear more from, let us know.

A few of the notes in today's 2014-heavy edition of The Heard:

  • Outside linebacker close to deciding
  • OU commit open to looking around
  • Watch List DE impressed by UT
  • Texas still No. 1 for safety
  • DL prospects still waiting
  • 2015 DT has Texas ties
  • WR Davis fulfills dream
  • 2015 DT enjoyed visit

Read The Heard after the jump.


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UT has chance to build Louisiana pipeline 

February, 28, 2013
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For a program that has never needed more than what it can find within its own state borders, Texas is starting to acknowledge a new recruiting pipeline is there for the taking. It’s practically begging to be built up.

The Longhorns are poised to become a player in the state of Louisiana, starting with this 2014 recruiting class.


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Welcome to The Heard, HornsNation’s weekly in-depth look inside the never-ending world of Longhorns recruiting with news, notes and interesting tidbits on the latest happenings around the program. We’ll release this every Thursday.

Talk about it in our forum and, if there’s a recruit out there you’d like to hear more from, let us know.

A few of the notes in today's 2014-heavy edition of The Heard:

  • The junior day visitors list
  • 2014 OL has Longhorns on top
  • Bishop Dunne duo high on UT
  • Offer would sway Houston OLB
  • DE would commit on spot
  • 2014 DT ready to visit Texas; won’t happen this weekend
  • DT likes Longhorns
  • Programs lining up for 2016 RB
  • Positive signs for Evans
  • Perkins anxious for Austin

Read The Heard after the jump.


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AUSTIN, Texas -- In less than four months signing day for the class of 2013 will come and go, and the class of 2014 will take center stage in the eyes of football programs and fan bases everywhere.

This year is unique in that many of the Longhorns’ junior targets are already known. For the first time in Mack Brown’s tenure on the 40 Acres, Texas has begun offering juniors before Junior Day in February.

On Monday and Tuesday, we looked at 14 junior offensive prospects that either already have Texas offers or could be in line for one down the road. On Wednesday, we looked at 7 offensive prospects. Here are the next 7:

[+] EnlargeKoda Martin
Max Olson/ESPN.comKoda Martin is one of the top tight ends in the state for the Class of 2014.
WR Lorenzo Joe (Abilene, Texas/Cooper)
6-foot-2, 190 pounds | ESPN Watch List member

The Latest: Joe became the first commitment of Texas’ 2014 class when he committed to them on Aug. 2. Joe will be a receiver at Texas, but he is a quarterback right now. Going into last week he had thrown for 1,055 yards, nine touchdowns, and has 455 rushing yards and four scores.

Offers: Committed to Texas

Quotable: “Texas was always the school growing up. It was the right thing to do.” -- Joe

OT Demetrius Knox (Fort Worth, Texas/All Saints)
6-4, 296 | ESPN Watch List member

The Latest: Knox is Texas’ to lose. He has liked the Longhorns for a very long time and a teammate of his, Daniel Gresham, is already committed to Mack Brown’s program.

Offers: Alabama, Baylor, Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, UCLA

Quotable: “It was pretty tough to watch. I stayed through the whole game and I called coach [Stacy] Searels up a little while after that and told him UT is still my No. 1 [school].” -- Knox after watching Oklahoma beat Texas.

TE Koda Martin (Manvel, Texas/Manvel)
6-6, 245 | ESPN Watch List member

The Latest: Texas will be transitioning away from the crop of tight ends it has now by the time 2014 comes around. The only tight end that should be around after 2014 is 2013 commitment Durham Smythe. So the Longhorns will be in need of a tight end and Martin could be one in the mix of receiving an offer. But they’ll have some work to do if that happens. Martin seems smitten with the Sooners right now.

Offers: Arkansas, Baylor, Oklahoma, Texas Tech, UCLA

Quotable: “OU is probably my top choice right now, but I’m not looking to make a decision until after this season. I’m just trying to focus on my high school football a lot.” -- Martin

WR Speedy Noil (New Orleans, La./Edna Karr)
5-10, 169 | ESPN Watch List member

The Latest: The Longhorns flirted with offering Noil’s teammate Noel Ellis but decided not to and Ellis has since committed to Texas A&M. Texas wasted little time in offering Noil, but there are plenty of other schools it’ll have to fend off if it wants him.

Offers: Alabama, Florida, Florida State, LSU, Ohio State, TCU, Texas

Quotable: "Coach [Darrell] Wyatt said to come down here and see how it is. He didn't tell me how it would be, but he said I would have fun here. And that's what I did, I had fun." -- Noil on how he enjoyed a Texas mini camp in June.

OT Cameron Robinson (West Monroe, La./West Monroe)
6-6, 325 | ESPN Watch List member

The Latest: Robinson is one of three offensive tackles Texas has offered already for 2014. Even though he resides out of state, the Longhorns should feel good about where they stand. Texas is in his top three with Alabama and LSU.

Offers: Alabama, Arkansas, LSU, Michigan, Mississippi State, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, TCU, Texas, Washington

Quotable: “I was hoping to form a better relationship with Coach Searels, and I got to see the facilities for the first time and I liked it a lot. They have some real friendly and enjoyable people down there. I liked it a lot.” -- Robinson said of spending time with Texas’ offensive line coach at Texas in June.

OT Braden Smith (Olathe, Kan./Olathe South)
6-6, 265 | ESPN Watch List member


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WR Speedy Noil eyes Ohio State visit 

August, 14, 2012
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There’s no secret Ohio State coach Urban Meyer loves his wide receivers to be fast, so it appears the Buckeyes can’t go wrong with a guy by the name of “Speedy.”

Speedy Noil (New Orleans/Edna Karr) is from the class of 2014 and as his name suggests, he has speed to burn.

A freshman wide receiver on his high school team that reached the Class 4A state final, Noil took the Cougars back there again last season. But this time it came at quarterback, where Noil passed for 1,654 yards and 26 touchdowns and rushed for 772 yards and eight scores.

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