football

JUCO DL is No. 27 for Texas Tech

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Texas Tech continued its run of JUCO recruiting success on Saturday with the
commitment of Highlands (Kan.) Highland C.C. defensive lineman
Brandon Thorpe.
The 6-foot-5, 275-pound prospect made the call during his official visit to the
South Plains.
"Before I was just going off of what Coach John Scott Jr. was telling me
aboput the program and everything," Thorpe said. "Once I got here and started
taking my visit, I really liked it and how everything was going. Just talking to them
about the defense, everything that they need on the d-line, where I'll be
playing, my position and everything. I liked everything I heard and I bought
into it."
Thorpe shared the news with Scott during dinner with all of the program's
coaches and other visitors.
"(Scott) was ecstatic," Thorpe said. "He said it made his night. We were all at
a dinner, all the coaches were there."
Thorpe, a native of Tucker, Ga., said that Scott played a big role in his
decision to become a Red Raider.
"Really, through the whole recruiting process, Coach Scott was the most
consistent coach," he said. "He talked to me every week, stayed on top of
everything, always checking on me. I'm not saying the other coaches didn't do
the same but I would say that Coach Scott was the most consistent one and always
let me know that they really wanted me to be a part of their program."
With Tech losing several defensive linemen off of its 2013 football team to
graduation, Thorpe knows that the program needs him to come in and play right
away.
"Expectations are high," he said. "I know they're losing their main d-lineman --
No. 91, Kerry (Hyder) -- and they're really hoping that I can somewhat fill the
position that he played. I've got some big shoes to fill in terms of
expectations."
Thorpe won't have to meet all of those expectations by himself. The Red Raiders
also have commitments from three other junior college defensive linemen:
Keland McElrath, Rika Levi and Highlands teammate Marcus Smith.
Smith was one of the first people that Thorpe told about his commitment.
"We are both excited about it," Thorpe said. "We had a good year up there and I
feel like we can do the same down here. Really, we're both excited about it. I
think that was also one of the reasons I committed because I know I'll be
playing with someone I know on the d-line."
Thorpe will have two years left to play for Tech. He chose the Red Raiders over offers from North Texas, South Florida, UCF and others.
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