New Texas Longhorns head coach Tom Herman extended his first offer to a junior college prospect on Tuesday — Scottsdale CC tight end Salvatore Cannella:
It's an honor to have received a offer from The University of Texas! #HookEm @Longhorn_FB pic.twitter.com/WNsRcNuZ1P— Salvatore Cannella (@salnells) December 6, 2016
The 6’6, 230-pounder was a full qualifier out of a private high school in the Chicago area, but ended up in Arizona due to a lack of interest. He’s only spent one year playing junior college football, but will be able to transfer as a member of the 2017 recruiting class.
In fact, he’ll be able to enroll in January at the school of his choice, with four years to use his three seasons of eligibility.
Maryland is currently considered the favorite after hosting Cannella on an official visit last weekend. He also holds offers from Auburn, Central Florida, Kansas, and Rutgers, in addition to a host of smaller schools.
Currently unranked by other services, 247Sports ranks Cannella is a consensus three-star prospect, the No. 40 junior college player nationally, the No. 3 junior college tight end, and the No. 4 junior college player in Arizona.
A hybrid tight end and wide receiver, Cannella caught 29 passes for 443 yards and seven touchdowns as a freshman at Scottsdale CC.
Most of the blocking clips are of Cannella working as an H-back or split out as a wide receiver, but he did spend some time as an in-line tight end. As a wide receiver, his best assets are his big body and ability to make contested catches.
There may be a learning curve for Cannella as he transitions to big-time college football, but the fact that he has a redshirt season available and three seasons of eligibility reduces the risk of taking him.
All in all, he has excellent size, good ball skills, and some evidence of an attitude in the blocking game. Just as importantly, there’s not a lot of competition for his services from Power Five programs.