After the commitment of Aledo running back Johnathan Gray almost two weeks ago, finding several more offensive tackles jumped to the top of the list of needs for the Longhorns in the 2012 class. And the top target at the position is Pearland Dawson's Kennedy Estelle, a 6-7, nearly 300 pounder with elite athleticism for his size -- exactly the type of left tackle prospect that Texas desperately needs.
Estelle attended the Texas spring game in early April and at that time it looked like a decision might be imminent from the Houston-area star, with the Longhorns holding a sizable advantage in his recruitment with both of his parents in the Texas corner.
As April turned into May, Estelle pushed back his timeline as he began to plan at least one trip to the Southest -- either to Alabama to visit the Crimson Tide and the Auburn Tigers or to Florida to take in the Seminole program. Neither of those trips is locked in at this point, but for Texas fans, the disturbing change of direction in his recruitment is after declaring Texas an early leader over Texas A&M, Estelle is now saying publicly that he is open ($) and does not have a top three.
His head coach at Dawson, Eric Wells, said that the family was unprepared ($) for the amount of national attention that their son is receiving -- he's now up to around 35 offers, causing the "overwhelmed" Estelles to back away from the recruiting process a bit in an attempt to make the right decision for Kennedy.
A trip into the heart of SEC country could still certainly tilt things in the direction of a school like Alabama or Auburn, but the trump card may still be the proximity of Austin to Estelle's family. It's an expensive proposition to buy plane tickets and travel every weekend during the fall andand his coaching staff have made such a favorable impression on both parents that Texas missing on Estelle still seems like a longshot.
It's just not going to be as quick or as easy as it appeared only weeks ago.