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February 17, 2013

Rivals250: A Look At The OL



We continue our look at the recently released Rivals250 that ranks the top 250 players in the country for the 2014 recruiting class. As alway sit is very early in the process for the next signing class but it does help give an idea of some of the top prospects at their respective positions as teams ramp their pursuit up.

Late last week we started the series off taking a look at the quarterbacks of the Rivals250 and even highlighted a few that were outside the group but had early connections to the Cougars. Today we start with a look at the offensive linemen of the 2014 class.

If there is one area that stands out as one that the Cougars have had success in recruiting over the last few classes it is along the offensive line. The Cougars already have an offer out to one of the top linemen in the class in Forestville (MD) Bishop McNamara standout Damian Prince who checks in at number 31 in the Rivals250. He is the highest ranked linemen that either already has ties to Houston in the form of an offer or obvious connections geographically.

The next player that pops up on the list that fits Houston's recruiting footprint in past years and is a viable option for them comes in all the way down at number 227 on the list in Bellflower (CA) St. John Bosco guard Damien Mama. Mama fits several criteria for the Cougars in location, the Cougars have begun to really focus some attention into California in recent classes with the addition of Jamie Christian. He also fits the Cougars need for interior linemen as the last couple classes have landed multiple tackles each. The competition will be stiff for Mama, who has early offers from several top schools in the region in BYU, Cal, Oregon State, Utah and both Washington schools.

The only other offer Houston shows to have out at this point in the class is to Arlington (TX) Bowie lineman Kristopher Thigpen who just seems to be taking off in the process with additional offers from Rice and Texas Tech early on. At 6-foot-4, 265 pounds he may also be a candidate to play inside at the collegiate level.

A few other offensive line prospects that Rivals shows to be receiving early interest from the Cougars but have not been offered so far include several interior prospects in Manvel (TX) Cougar legacy Cory Klingler whose dad Jimmy played for the Cougars and is now the offensive coordinator at Manvel. Also notables are Nacogdoches (TX) interior lineman Jacob Bragg who was very impressive at several camps last summer, Oklahoma City (OK) Bishop McGuinness's Johnathan Higgins and Garland (TX) North Garland's Tryston Mizerak.

A couple other names that might see increasing interest from the Cougars as they move forward with their 2014 recruiting efforts include Clear Lake (TX) road grader Blake Blackmar who has seen interest pick up as of late with offers from Baylor and Kansas State and Galena Park (TX) North Shore's Trevon Tate.

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