As some of you may know, the official date for JUCO players to sign is December 18th, next Wednesday. What this means is starting December 18th, JUCO recruits wishing to attend an university in the spring may sign their NOI (National letter of intent) at this point in time. The last day JUCO recruits can do this January 15th, around the time that most schools are back. So a lot of these JUCO players will start to make their college decisions around this date, sort of like National Signing Day for the High School Players.
Now some of these JUCO players were actually trying to visit Tech this weekend, but the ice storm hit Lubbock around early Thursday morning, enough were they had to postpone some exams on Friday and probably couldn't land some planes. Some recruits did make it to Lubbock, however, I'm not sure which ones were able to come and which weren't, so I'll just mention if they were SUPPOSED to visit this weekend. So with that, let's get a look at our Cali Trio from San Mateo, LB Sam Atoe, DT Rika Levi and OG Haniteli Lousi.
Sam Atoe - Outside Linebacker / Strong Safety (San Mateo CC, San Mateo, CA)
Height: 6'0" Weight: 205
Ratings: NR by 247 (70 in HS) / NR by ESPN (74 in HS) / NR by Rivals (5.6 in HS)
Interest: Texas Tech (Warm), California (Warm), Fresno State (Warm), TCU (Warm)
Does that Linbacker/Safety combination remind you of anyone? Maybe Terrence Bullit, who also plays both positions for Texas Tech? Anyway, a little background information on Sam Atoe, he was actually recruited as an RB/ATH in HS, and committed to San Deigio State. Unfortunately for him, he didn't qualify, and from reading some old fanboards from two years ago, it looked to be academics. Hopefully he can get does grades up wherever he plays next year. When he went to play for San Mateo CC, he played a hybrid OLB/SS position, where a majority of the time he was rushing the quarterback or stopping the run. Here is some film on Sam Atoe, and he is, simply, a football player. A fast, hard tackling, go-get-em-every-down, football player. Being a RB in high school, Atoe has great speed, and can quickly get to the RB or QB before they even know what hit them (that, the blows he delivers on the opposing players). Even when he drops back into coverage, he can keep with the receivers he's covering. The kid does his jobs and goes to the position he needs to be to make plays. I believe when it's all said and done, Atoe will be a high 3-Star or a low 4-Star. And with LB a position of need for these Red Raiders, picking him up would be huge for us. He had an official visit also planned for Fresno State last Tuesday and California last weekend. Here is his CC film, and below is high school film
Rika Levi - Defensive Tackle (San Mateo CC, San Mateo, CA)
Height: 6'2" Weight: 350 lbs
Ratings: 91 by 247 (NR in HS) / 75 by ESPN (NR in HS) / 5.5 by Rivals (NR in HS)
Interest: MIzzou (Warm), Washington (Warm), Texas Tech (Warm)
For those that want a bigger DT, well hope this is good enough for you. Some background information on Levi, he wasn't recruited well out of high school. The only teams listed as having interest from Rivals are Miami and Colorado, who both didn't offer a scholarship or look too hard into him. At the CC level, safe to say, he has been a little bit more respected ranking wise, getting 4-Stars from 247 and respectable ratings from Rivals and ESPN. I looked at his film, and I can see why he is rated now, but wasn't previously. He uses he hands well, getting around linemen and finding his way to the QB, either disrupting him or actually sacking him. His big body and weights makes it hard for linemen and RBs go through him, making them have to hit the outside or try and squeeze their way through the B gap. The thing that worries me the most about Levi is his atrocious speed. According to ESPN, in high school, his 40 time was clocked at 5.96, and his film both in high school and college show that. While he is hard to move around at the DT position, if the play ends up elsewhere, it will be hard for Levi to make any impact. So unlike Hyder and Richards were this year, I don't think that Levi is at all expandable. He took an unofficial visit to Washington 2 weekends ago, and was supposed to take an official last weekend, but Coach Sarkisian left for the USC job and looks like that interrupted Levi's plans. Here is his CC film and below is his high school film (it's from his channel, so you can look at his another videos if you want)
Haniteli Lousi - Offensive Guard, IHOP Cook (San Mateo CC, San Mateo, CA)
Height: 6'5" Weight: 295 lbs
Ratings: 90 by 247 / 78 by ESPN / NR by Rivals
Interests: Oregon (Warm), Kansas (Warm), Colorado (Warm), Texas Tech (Warm)
With all the changes and injuries at the guard position this past season, it would be nice to get another addition to this offensive line. There is no doubt in my mind that Lousi would start on this Red Raider team. I couldn't find any information for this guy in high school, so I don't know if he wasn't looked at or what. The latest info I have on him was he was on the team his sophomore year. I'm not sure if he didn't continue or simply didn't get looked at. However, in CC, he is quite the player. On a majority of his film's highlights, he was viciously pancaking the opposition. He made so many pancakes, he should work for IHOP (cue drum sound). Not only is he powerful, but he has good speed to him too. Lousi has great strength and the ability to move on pull players, something I like seeing in my linemen. 2 weekends ago he visited Oregon, and this weekend he was supposed to visit Colorado, but looked like he canceled that visit to go to Texas Tech, which looks to be scheduled for this weekend now. Below is a look at his film in CC.
Here are some updates:
- Zay-Coven Henderson, 89 rated DT, committed to Texas yesterday. The whole Tech coaching staff visited him in his house last Wednesday, but apparently it wasn't enough to persuade him to pick Texas Tech.
- Fahn Cooper, 92 rated JUCO OT, committed to Ole Miss is past weekend. Last weekend he visited Ole Miss and enjoyed it enough to commit quickly after.
- Sebastian Tretola, 90 rated JUCO OT, recently has an offer from Florida, coaching visit from Arkansas and will be visiting Arkansas this weekend. Look for Tretola to commit shortly after.
- Payton Hendrix, 86 rated S from Dallas, visited Texas Tech this past weekend. His only other official visits are from Norte Dame at AT&T stadium and Arkansas this weekend. Could this mean Texas Tech gets a 7th DB or would one current DB lose a scholarship
- Dominique Robertson, 85 rated JUCO OT, was supposed to visit Texas Tech last weekend. My guess is that he didn't make it due to weather, but surely he will visit another time.
- Keyon Dilosa, 82 rated ATH, will be visiting BYU next weekend. He is listed as Tech's top target on 247, but with 5 WR's committed to Tech already, his pick-up seems unlikely.
- Kenny Iloka, 87 rated JUCO S, was visited by the Tech coaching staff last week. He already has a visit from A&M and his brother is the starting SS for the Cincinnati Bengals. He recently just got an offer from Texas Tech and TCU, and plans to visit them both in the upcoming week.
- Tyler C.C. were getting visited by the Tech coaching staff last week. They were rumored to have taken a look at Tech commit Drew Savary, Kenny Iloka and one other player. Seth believes that the player is DT Jeremy Miller, who was recruited by Eric Morris and has yet to commit. Some other players if could've been are Joshua Reynolds (now an A&M commit) or even Matt Davis, who was a 94 rated QB that went to A&M with Kingsbury. He would be a 2015 recruit however, not a 2014.
- Cory Johnson, 90 rated JUCO DT that's committed to Kentucky, will visit Texas Tech this weekend. He also visited Miami last weekend too.
- Corey Avery, 85 rated ATH, looks like he'll commit to Nebraska. After months of inactivity, Nebraska coaches paid him a visit, and scheduled an official visit with him for 1/18. No other team has a visit from him.
- Randy Anyanwu, 79 rated DE, took an official visit to Temple this past weekend. Once on Tech's radar, it looks like Texas Tech is no longer a factor for Anyanwu.
- Brandon Thorpe, NR JUCO DE, took an official visit to West Virginia this past weekend. He has yet to have an offer from WVU and recently has appear on Techs radar. Has no other official visits.
- Robert Castaneda, 80 rated OT and Tech commit, was recently offered by TCU. I believe he is still fully committed to Texas Tech, just interesting to see who else is interested in our commits.
- Clayton Hatfield, US All American Kicker committed to Texas Tech, will walk on. This is huge, as it gives another spot open to other player. He also had a Texas State offer, but the walk-on shows his loyalty to the squad.
- Cameron Batson, 86 rated WR and Tech commit, was named Oklahoma's Gatorade Player of the Year. He is the 11th ranked recruit in Oklahoma and has a 4.0 GPA (per Seth C). Congrats to Batson on this prestigious award.
- Dakota Allen, 86 rated LB and Tech commit, was named District 19-4A Defensive MVP. Congrats to him.
- Patrick Mahomes and Robert Castaneda are both part of Blue-Grey All American game. Although it's not U.S. Army or Under Amour All-American, anything that's All-American is special.
- As y'all know, Texas Tech will be playing #16 Arizona State at the Holiday Bowl on December 30th. While the match-up is not in our favor, this gets a chance for West Coast recruits to get a look at Tech, which most wouldn't get unless it was an official visit. The recruits in California are Dominique Robertson and the Cali Trio I mentioned above.
- Brandon Jones, 2016 Safety, was recently offered by Texas Tech. His only other offer so far is from Texas A&M.
- Justin Dunning, 90 rated S from Whitehouse, committed to Texas A&M a month ago (I missed on the information then). Mahomes was trying to recruit him to Tech, but there is still plenty of time for him to change his mind.
- Devontre Stricklin, 87 rated WR from Waco, was also recently offered by Texas Tech. Right now his favorite is Baylor, and being from Waco doesn't help.
- Kyler Murray, 97 rated QB, was recently named Texas Gatorade Player of the Year as a junior. Along with the award, he also was visited by Texas A&M. They have the perfect pitch having Johnny Manziel.
- Jarrett Stidham, 96 rated QB, had a lot of visits this past week, namely Texas, Kentucky, Washington State, Oregon and Tennessee. Both of Texas Tech's top QB targets are slipping from the Red Raiders.
- Curran Scott, 2015 SG, was recently looked at by the Red Raiders. There aren't any profiles out for him yet, but hopefully some will come out soon
- Darrion Daniels, 88 rated 2015 DT, was recently offered by Ohio State. Arkansas, Baylor and Oklahoma are in the lead. He is the son of former Tech great Tony Daniels, and Tech has offered him.