Oct. 14, 2006: Larry Coker leads the Hurricanes out in Miami. He didn't have tunnel vision this recruiting season.
Announcing his second recruiting class, University of Texas-San Antonio head coach Larry Coker said that 28 “highly-decorated student-athletes” signed their letters of intent to enroll and play for the Roadrunners.
The class has a crystal-clear Texas tang—26 recruits from the Lone Star State. Eight of them are from the Greater San Antonio area. Seven come from the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, five from Greater Houston, four more from Central Texas and two from East Texas.
In radio interviews, Coker reveals some of the attributes he looks for in recruits. “In general, we want kids with character,” he declared on one morning show. "Having character includes going to class, working hard, staying out of trouble, being responsible and displaying sportsmanship."
He said two signees—freshman Chris Johnson and junior Brandon Reeves—are currently attending classes at UTSA. Johnson is a fierce tailback from San Antonio’s East Central High School. About Johnson, Coker said he’d take him at any school he’s coached—quite impressive coming from the former Miami (Fla.) coach.
Reeves was the first 2011 signee to commit to UT-San Antonio. He faxed his letter last December. A play-making linebacker, he transferred in from Pierce College in Los Angeles.
Coker and staff missed out on signing any “fivers”—players rated with five-stars by the leading recruiting services. Five-star players are the very elite, the top level in recruiting information services such as Scout.com and Rivals.com.
“I’m still amazed at the quality of kids we’ve been able to attract here, but then I shouldn’t be because this is Texas. There are a lot of good football players in this state,” Coker said.
The list of UTSA signees, though, from the Alamo City area was marvelous. National signing day this year produced the most ever Division I signees from the Greater San Antonio Area. Johnny Manziel from Kerrville Tivy HS in the Greater San Antonio area was the No. 1 rated quarterback in Texas by some experts. Hold your horses, Roadrunners fans, he signed with Texas A&M.
Coker said his plans on offense were to throw the ball mainly, but with a quarterback who can make things happen through the air and with his feet.
UTSA signee Josiah Monroe was a thrilling dual threat quarterback at Bastrop High School. Coker mentioned him in the same breath with Santana Moss and Roscoe Parish.
From DeSoto, Texas, quarterback Ryan Polite also committed to UT-San Antonio. He’s the No. 5 passer in Texas high school football history.
Signee quarterback Cole Hubble from Bandera High School is no slouch either. His highlights remind me of Nebraska redshirt freshman Taylor Martinez with a better passing touch.
At the University of Miami, he coached some of the fastest players ever in college football (Devin Hester to name one). At UTSA this recruiting season, he “focused on speed and playmakers, guys who can make things happen.”
David Moss from Marble Falls is a Jeremy Shockey type player with phenomenal hands. Big and physical, he competes for the football, Coker said.
Coker is as excited about him as any prospect, and with good reason. He was both Shockey’s and Kellen Winslow Jr.’s head coach at the University of Miami.
Defensive back Kenny Bias is expected to make a splashing introduction. He’s a talented athlete, return man and explosive player from Stevens High School.
Sean Hesler was a nice snag for Coker. A defensive back and quarterback out of Marion, he’s also one of the fastest players in the whole of Texas as a state finalist in the 100-meter dash. Running a sub 4.4 in the 40-yard dash, he could develop world-class speed in the next three or four years.
Coker called Brookshire Royal High defensive back DeMetrius Jacobs a “hybrid type player.” He mentioned him in the same sentence with Ed Reed of the Baltimore Ravens.
The class doesn’t rank with the Texas Longhorns. I’d rank them after UT, A&M, SMU, Baylor and TCU. All other Texas schools should fall in line behind the Roadrunners.
Critics claim Coker won a national championship at Miami with another staff’s recruits. He’ll get a chance to show what UTSA staff’s recruits can do, and he’s excited.
“I feel really good about our class,” he said. He sounded less confident in keeping them together: “We just have to hold and maintain those kids.”