The whirlwind recruitment of 2013 Irving offensive guard Rami Hammad will to a third and final conclusion on Wednesday when the 6-5, 320-pounder announces his decision between Texas, Baylor, Oklahoma, and TCU.
Initially committed to Oklahoma State, Hammad's most recent commitment was to Baylor, made in November, but the rising four-star prospect decommitted on Sunday following an official visit to Texas, a trip that bumped a planned excursion to Oklahoma. And TCU? Unless Hammad makes it some time before Wednesday, he won't visit the Horned Frogs either after setting his decision date prior to the formerly planned official to Fort Worth.
It's worth going back and looking at the rare and insane rise of Hammad, who starred at the Semper Fi Bowl back in early January and become the unusual prospect whose stock exploded at a postseason all-star game.
How sick was Hammad's performance in 1v1s in Los Angeles? So sick the film was initially withheld to protect the innocent:
I tried to get the 1 on 1 highlights but the Semper Fi people told me I may hurt the chances of some other prospects so they don't want to post them but they'll send me a copy.
Check that, then -- the film has been withheld to protect those made to look really, really bad.
It doesn't take a wild prognostication to predict that Hammad will become a Longhorn on Wednesday -- why would he decommit from Baylor days before recommitting? And why would he commit to the two schools that he didn't visit? Add in the fact that Hammad described his visit and working with offensive line coach Stacey Searels as something that he "loved" and "perfect."
All enough for Hammad's 247Sports profile to list Texas as the favorite.
Much of the credit here goes to Stacy Searels -- while the Texas offensive line still had some struggles at the point of attack throughout 2012 against good defensive fronts, he's helped put together a strong class that stands to get stronger with the addition of Hammad.
Recruits tend to approach teams coming in on them late differently. Some allow pride to come into the equation and don't care for schools that don't offer just before Signing Day, but it appears that Searels has been able to convince Hammad that it was his fault he Texas waited so long with the Irving product and that he wished he had offered earlier.
Of course, it hasn't hurt Texas that the 'Horns were one of about 15 schools that extended offers in the immediate aftermath of his star turn at the Semper Fi game.
And Alex De La Torre's father is the head coach at Irving, too, which also doesn't hurt, though the extent to which he has been involved in the favor of Texas will likely remain squarely in the realm of speculation.
Early playing time is another factor for Hammad since there are a number of programs that can offer it, especially Baylor, which is losing two starters on the interior of the line. Not only that, but the Bears have also been much more successful in developing linemen for the NFL, with line coach Randy Clements having put five linemen in the NFL in the last four drafts, a number that will increase by at least one this April.
The Longhorns don't have the history of recent success in development there, but it appears as if Hammad is more worried about becoming a part of future success at Texas.