After a surprisingly slow start to their 2018 recruiting class the Texas State Bobcats have kicked things into gear after gaining seven commitments in a single day. Despite not having a single commitment to their name just a week ago, the Bobcats now rank in fourth place in the 247 Sports recruiting rankings for the Sun Belt Conference after earning verbals from four three-star prospects.
In desperate need of depth along both lines, Texas State has already made size a clear focus in this class. The Bobcats recently added four commitments from offensive linemen, all hailing from the high school ranks. Kylar Cooks, Jalen Momerelle, and Morgan Moore all bring long reaches on the perimeter at 6’5”.
Despite currently weighing just 255 pounds, Cooks appears to be the gem of the group as he boasts offers from Arkansas State, Louisiana-Lafayette, and North Texas. Cooks shows really quick feet in his highlight film and obviously has desirable length at 6’5”. If he’s able to find a way to swell to 300 pounds or more then he could be a potential all-conference contributor for the Bobcats.
The highest rated player in the Bobcats’ class is also an offensive lineman however his future at the collegiate level will likely come at either center or guard. Standing at 6’3”, 295 pounds, Drake Centers chose to join Texas State over offers from Louisiana Monroe, SMU, and Southern Miss. A plus athlete for his size, Centers will need to clean up his footwork and add strength in the lower body before he’s ready to step in as a contributor.
The lone JUCO recruit in Texas State’s current recruiting class, Tyler Junior College’s Brandon Johnson should step in immediately to the Bobcats’ secondary as a free safety. While Johnson’s recruiting has yet to really take off, his skill is evident in his highlight films as he shows both savvy coverage skills and a hard-hitting instinct in the secondary. Johnson has the ability to be a day-one starter in San Marcos.
Brandon won’t be the only Johnson roaming the Bobcats’ secondary next season as CJ Johnson of Allen High (TX) has also pledged to join the program following his graduation. While Johnson only received offers from FCS programs McNeese State and Stephen F. Austin before committing, he comes from arguably the best high school program in the state of Texas. He’ll also be joined by teammate Taj Bickham. While Johnson lines up as a safety, Bickham is a traditional cornerback with exceptional speed and change-of-direction ability. Bickham will likely see the field early in his career as a return specialist.
Wrapping up the Bobcats’ current class is cornerback Auston Deason and wide reciever TJ Graham. Deason stands at 6’0” and earned offers from Air Force and Army before committing to the Bobcats. Deason showed the ability to play tough man coverage in his junior season at Pearland High (TX), a skill all too rare at the high school level.
A three-star receiver, TJ Graham hauled in 12 touchdowns and 536 receiving yards in his junior season. While Graham’s only other scholarship offer came from Southern Illinois, he was gathering interest from several Division I programs including Duke, Illinois, Minnesota, and UTSA. Despite standing at just 6’1”, Graham has a significant jumping ability and does a great job at attacking the ball at its highest point in order to make catches over the coverage. Graham should be effective as a possession receiver in the coming years.
While Texas State is off to a solid start for their 2018 class there are still many slots left to fill before National Signing Day rolls around. Head Coach Everett Withers will likely focus on attaining both JUCO and high school talent on the defensive line moving forward. The Bobcats also need to find their quarterback for the 2018 class. Recruiting may slow down a bit with the summer no-contact period approaching but collecting so many commitments in such a short period of time will certainly catch the attention of recruits as the Bobcats seek to fill out their available scholarships.