The top-ranked in-state safety for the 2021 cycle is on the Texas Longhorns radar after a phenomenal first half of his high school career.
Kennedale safety JD Coffey has made an early splash due to his play on the field and willingness to compete at a high level during the offseason circuit. After being a key contributor on defense as a freshman and sophomore, Coffey has tallied 127 tackles and 12 interceptions.
With a prospect like Coffey scanning the field and being the last line of defense, it’s important to account for his whereabouts on every play if you’re a quarterback or a skill player being targeted. Coffey is a total ballhawk with tremendous ball skills that finds himself in great position to create turnovers for the defense. He has the closing speed to cover a good amount of ground in coverage and when flying downhill to attack ball carriers. Coffey’s size suits him well at his position and he’s equipped with a frame that will develop tremendously over time.
The four-star standout is regarded as one of the best safeties in the nation, but the offers have yet to pour in for Coffey. Illinois State and Utah are the only two programs to extend an offer to Coffey up to this point, and he’s hoping to see his list expand as time prevails.
“It’s going very good,” Coffey told BON about his recruitment. “A lot of schools are now starting to get in touch with me and show a lot of interest. I would like to see more schools getting in touch with me and start to have a relationship in some way.”
Hitting the road to visit schools and meet with coaching staff’s has been important to Coffey during this offseason. Over the last few months, he has made his way to Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, Utah, and most recently, to Texas for the spring game.
Coffey’s visit to Austin last weekend was eye opening for him, as he paid close attention to the Longhorns secondary and formed an understanding of what is expected on the defensive side of the ball.
“The spring game was a great experience and I really enjoyed watching the defense work together,” Coffey expressed. “Watching the defensive backs play aggressive and control the field was very interesting to watch.”
The uplifting atmosphere that Tom Herman and his staff have formulated over the years is an aspect of the Texas program Coffey is intrigued with.
“The competitiveness throughout the whole program is something that I like a lot,” Coffey said. “The staff pushes for greatness and it shows on the field.”
Safeties coach and co-defensive coordinator Craig Naivar has made an effort to keep in touch with Coffey. The two have formed a close connection early.
“I stay in contact with coach Naivar a lot,” Coffey said. “We have a good relationship and he tells me to continue to grind and stay on the books.”
The Longhorns haven’t put an offer out to a defensive back in the 2021 cycle yet, but Coffey is anticipating an opportunity to become the first Texas target from the secondary in his class.
“UT is definitely one of my favorite schools and being a part of their team is a dream,” Coffey said.
As a prospect that is months away from beginning his junior season, Coffey has already accomplished on-field statistics that most seniors will never reach. With that being said, Coffey is gearing up to continue his phenomenal play and achieving prestigious goals in the classroom as well.
“I want to continue to excel on the football field and push myself to be the best,” Coffey said. “Off the field, I want to receive all-academic next year.”
Coffey plans to make more visits to Austin as his recruitment carries on.
At 6’0.5, 180 pounds, Coffey is ranked as the nation’s No. 179 prospect, the No. 6 safety in the country, and as the No. 6 player in the state for the 2021 cycle, per 247Sports.