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July 21, 2004

Texas top 100 packed with impact recruits

The film doesn't lie, and neither do personal observations, but after seeing countless players from the Lone Star State on film and in person, coming up with a state top 100 list is still not an easy thing.

However, it's something that must be done and Rivals.com is proud to release its first top 100 in Texas.

Headlining the list is Alief (Texas) Taylor tight end Martellus Bennett. The 6-foot07, 237-pound five-star selection is Miami bound after receiving scholarship offers from almost everybody that is anybody in the nation. Bennett earned first-team all-district honors as a junior, and he put on a show this past weekend at the FoxSportsNet Texas 7-on-7 State Championship.

"I've been telling you that's where I belong," Bennett said. "It's a great honor to named the top player in Texas. I still have a long way to go and know that I must keep working hard if I want to get to where I know I can get."

At No. 2 on the list is Houston Booker T. Washington offensive tackle Reggie Youngblood, another five-star selection. Youngblood, who is 6-5 and 280 pounds, is one of the most highly coveted linemen in the nation. He's ranked as the No. 2 offensive tackle and is expected to pick between LSU, Texas, Arizona, Florida State, Miami, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Tennessee.

"I pass protect just as well as I run block," he said. "I know my assignments and rarely make mistakes. I just like to have fun."

Dallas Kimball five-star defensive tackle DeMarcus Granger comes in at No. 3 on the list.

The 6-3, 325-pounder is a quarterback's worst nightmare. He racked up 68 tackles and 17 sacks as a junior. He likes Arizona, LSU, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Tennessee, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech and Nebraska on his list.

"I think a lot of people look at me and they think I just plug up the middle," he said.

"Then they see me move and wonder how I do that."

Galena Park (Texas) North Shore tight end Dajleon Farr is No. 4, followed by Lufkin, Texas, defensive end McKinner Dixon at No. 5.

Receiver Malcolm Kelly, the state's No. 6 player, made news on Tuesday when he announced his commitment to Oklahoma.

The Sooners also have commitments from the No. 10 player in the state, defensive tackle Roy Miller, and the No. 24 player, receiver Manuel Johnson.

However, the team that's made the biggest impact so far is Texas A&M.

Eight of the Aggies' commitments are on the top 100 list, highlighted Killeen (Texas) Harker Heights offensive lineman Michael Shumard at No. 11 and Aldine Eisenhower defensive end Paul Freeney at No. 12 on the list. Six of the Aggies commits are ranked in the state's top 55.

The Texas Longhorns, which have limited scholarships this season, have commitments from four players in the top 25, lead off by Texarkana Texas linebacker Chris Collins at No. 7 and Port Arthur Memorial running back Jamaal Charles at No. 19 on the list.

Texas Tech has also made significant strides with its state recruiting efforts.

The Red Raiders have placed five commitments on the initial state ranking, highlighted by receiver Chris Cunigan of Willis Point, Texas, who is a heck of a receiver but many teams don't realize how good he is since he committed so early.

Offensive lineman Louis Vasquez of Corsicana, Texas, was also a significant pickup for Tech.


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