The Texas Longhorns finally have an offensive line commit in the 2016 class, as Arlington Bowie's Tope Imade committed to the Hons on Monday, days after receiving his Texas offer:
Clearly, there was some advance notice of the move, as Imade's 247Sports Crystal Ball blew up with Texas predictions on Memorial Day, with five predictions in favor of the Horns.
Imade was on the fringe of receiving an offer ever since Texas offensive guard target Chris Owens committed to Alabama nearly a month ago and the patience finally paid off. Linebackers coach Brian Jean-Mary, the area recruiter for Arlington, stopped by Bowie in late April. After offensive coodinator/offensive coach Joe Wickline evaluated Imade in person last week, the Longhorns staff extended the offer.
Imade shared some insight on his quick decision with Horns247:
"I talked to my dad about it, and we decided to go with Texas," Imade told Horns247. "They didn't have any offensive line commits, so I thought it would be great if I could be their first one.
"The coaches showed they really wanted me, and my former teammate Edwin Freeman was in my ear about it too. Even Shane sent me some messages on Twitter. It just felt right."
A visitor for the Orange-White game in April, that trip to Austin made enough of an impact on Imade that he didn't need another journey down I-35 to make his choice.
The consensus three-star prospect is the No. 949 recruit overall, the No. 44 offensive guard, and the No. 121 prospect in Texas. Other offers include Illinois, Kansas State, Miami, Michigan, Texas Tech, Washington.
Imade has the height of a tackle at 6'5, but the mass of an offensive guard at 327 pounds. Not quite as mobile as Owens or Denzel Okafor, Imade nonetheless has a great deal of strength that benefits him significantly in the running game.
The Horns now have five pledges in the 2016 class, which ranks No. 37 nationally and No. 4 in the Big 12, according to the 247Sports Composite team rankings. Imade is the first of six offensive line recruits the Longhorns plan on taking in the cycle.