After the commitment of Lancaster (TX) defensive back Nick Harvey to Texas A&M early Monday morning, Texas fans needed some good news from the afternoon decision of 2014 Fort Worth (TX) All Saints offensive tackle Demetrius Knox and got exactly that, as first broken by Hookem.com.
The 6-5, 300-pound Knox choose Texas over his three other finalists -- Alabama, Ohio State, and TCU.
A consensus four-star prospect considered the top offensive lineman in the state of Texas for the 2014 class and a player rated in the top 50 nationally by 247Sports, Knox nearly committed to Texas back in August before delaying his decision, with his ultimate destination not a surprise since he and best friend Daniel Gresham have been planning on playing college football together for some time.
After Gresham, a running back/fullback, committed to Texas on the day that Knox called the Texas coaching staff to make his own pledge, it has been widely assumed that Knox would indeed join Gresham in Austin.
Knox shared with ESPN why he choose the Longhorns ($) over a handful of offers from some of the nation's top programs:
UT just looked better for my future. I felt like it was the best situation for me and my future. It’s a blessing and I’m real happy. My job now is to dominate in the weight room, get stronger in the offseason and help my future team get other recruits excited.
Last Thursday, Knox made his way down to Austin with Gresham and another teammate, fellow 2014 prospect Kendall Adams, and came away impressed with the experience ($):
The coaching staff and the people just showed me a lot of love. I was walking around and everyone knew my name. People in the stands were screaming my name too. That and the atmosphere were both just crazy. When the people got excited, the place was rocking!
After Knox's commitment became public, he let it be known that he had given his commitment to the Texas coaching staff in a meeting before the game.
And while the Texas offensive line had some notable troubles in both run blocking and in pass protection, Knox still believes in offensive line coach Stacy Searels:
I believe he’s done the best with what he has. I think he has done all he can to get the best out of his players. He has a plan to get the best offensive line together as possible and build the team around them. That’s a smart choice.
As it is for many prospects, making the phone calls to the coaches of his three finalists was not an easy task:
I cried when I messages the coaches... It hurt— BIG SOSA (@meechy77) November 26, 2012
Who says the big nasties in the trenches don't have feelings?!?!
Speaking of feelings, Knox is a native of Ohio and grew up a Buckeyes fan, but did not take a visit to Columbus or Tuscaloosa before making his decision.
So how did Knox know that he was ready to decide without taking those visits? The long-term future that he sees for himself in the Lone Star State:
Ever since the second grade, Ohio State has been my idol school and dream school. But I thought about it and talked to my coaching staff and my family. When I grow up, if the whole NFL thing doesn’t work, I want to come back and live and work in Texas.
Those opportunities made it hard for the home-state Buckeyes to mess with Texas, especially considering that head coach Urban Meyer declined to offer Gresham, as did Alabama.
The loss for Alabama and Ohio State stands now as a major gain for Texas, which now has six commitments for the 2014 class.
Considering the continued trouble the Longhorns have faced finding quality offensive tackles, landing the best prospect in the state is a major step in the right direction for a program that needed some positive recruiting momentum with the rising specter of a re-emerging giant in College Station now looming large.
Demetrius Knox's Highlights (via 77mechman)