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Saturday, January 25, 2014

WR Darious Crawley picks Kansas over Michigan State

Kansas University football recruiting.

Kansas University football recruiting.

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After visiting Kansas University last weekend and hosting in-home visits with his two finalists — KU and Michigan State — during the week, wide receiver Darious Crawley orally committed to KU late Friday night.

Crawley, a three-star wide receiver from Houston's Cypress Ridge High, credited his connection with the KU coaching staff as the deciding factor along with KU's presence in the Big 12, which will bring Crawley back to his home state multiple times throughout his career.

Yet again, KU recruiting coordinator Rob Ianello played a big role in landing Crawley, who told JayhawkSlant.com's Jon Kirby that his decision created a heck of a reaction from the KU coaches.

"They were fired up," Crawley said. "I could tell they were happy. I really felt I had a good connection with the coaches the whole time and then the players on the visit. The Big 12 is a good conference."

Crawley, 5-foot-11, 191 pounds, spent his senior season splitting time between quarterback and wide receiver. He has been clocked in the 4.55-second range in the 40-yard dash and also played running back and returned punts during his prep career.

Crawley told Kirby that he picked Kansas simply because it was the place where he felt more comfortable.

Crawley becomes the 21st player and fourth wide receiver in the Class of 2014 to commit to Kansas.

Here's a quick look at the rest of the class, which includes three players who signed national letters of intent during the midyear signing period in December:

• Matthew Boateng — 6-foot, 180-pound defensive back from IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. Two-star prospect committed to KU in December and picked the Jayhawks over Ball State, Indiana, Marshall, Nevada and Wake Forest.

• Jacob Bragg — 6-4, 308-pound center from Nacogdoches (Texas) High who is ranked as the 11th best center in the country. Three-star offensive lineman committed to KU last June and played in the UnderArmor All-American game this winter.

• Ronnie Davis – 6-1, 170-pound defensive back from Northeastern Oklahoma A&M. Three-star prospect committed to KU in December after originally being committed to Utah State. Seems poised to come in as a nickelback. Already signed letter of intent and is on campus.

• Joe Dineen — 6-2, 197-pound defensive back from Free State High in Lawrence. Three-star athlete was the Gatorade Kansas player of the year in 2013.

• Josh Ehambe — 6-3, 230-pound linebacker from Prime Prep Academy in Arlington, Texas. Two-star prospect committed to KU last week and picked the Jayhawks over offers from Colorado State, Louisiana Tech, New Mexico, SMU, Washington State and others.

• Kapil Fletcher — 6-4, 255-pound defensive end from Hartnell Community College in California. Two-star player committed to KU last week and picked Kansas over offers from Colorado, Hawaii, Mississippi State, New Mexico and others.

• Bobby Hartzog – 5-11, 182-pound wide receiver from Westside High in Houston. Two-star athlete committed to KU in September, picking Kansas over Houston, Iowa State, Utah and others. Has been clocked in the 4.46-second 40-yard dash range.

• Keyon Haughton – 6-2, 295-pound offensive guard from Georgia Military College. Two-star prospect picked Kansas last December and signed with the Jayhawks on the first day of the midyear signing period. Haughton, who picked KU over Florida A&M, Louisiana Lafayette, Southern Miss and others, already is on campus.

• Lay'Trion Jones – 6-3, 285-pound defensive tackle from Garland (Texas) High. Three-star prospect committed to KU earlier this week and chose Kansas over New Mexico, UTEP and others. Comes from a big-time high school program.

• Damani Mosby – 6-3, 235-pound defensive end from Mesa Community College. Three-star prospect committed to KU in November, picking Kansas over Hawaii, Kansas State, New Mexico and North Texas.

• Derrick Neal – 5-10, 155-pound wide receiver from Lincoln High in Dallas. Three-star prospect is ranked as the 90th best player in Texas. Committed to KU last weekend after official visit over offers from New Mexico and interest from Baylor and TCU.

• Tyler Patrick – 5-11, 171-pound wide receiver from The Woodlands (Texas) High. Two-star prospect with great athleticism committed to KU last July.

• Anthony “Fish” Smithson – 6-foot, 180-pound defensive back from Hartnell Community College in California. Smithson chose Kansas after commitment to Utah fell through due to the departure of the coach recruiting him. Three-star prospect gives KU good size and depth an already stacked secondary. Committed and signed in December and is already on campus.

• Kent Taylor – 6-5, 224-pound tight end from the University of Florida. Once regarded as the top tight end prospect in the country out of high school, Taylor spent two seasons at UF (playing in six games in 2012 and red-shirting in 2013) and chose to transfer to KU in the offseason. He is on campus and will participate in spring ball but will have to sit out the 2014 season because of NCAA transfer rules.

• Apa Visinia – 6-5, 380-pound offensive lineman from Grandview (Mo.) High. Two-star prospect regarded as one of the strongest players in the state, picked KU over Oklahoma State. Visinia committed to KU last June.

• Kyron Watson – 6-foot, 226-pound linebacker from East St. Louis High. Three-star prospect is the 22nd ranked linebacker in the nation according to Rivals.com and the 21st-rated player in Illinois. Committed to KU last May over offers from Cal, Cincinnati, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa State, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Purdue, Syracuse and TCU. Without question one of the gems of this class.

• D.J. Williams – 6-3, 270-pound defensive tackle from Lufkin (Texas) High. Three-star monster ranked as the 38th best DT in the country and 78th best player in Texas chose KU over Houston, Miami (Fla.), Missouri and Oklahoma. Another big-time pick-up for KU.

• Devon Williams — 6-5, 335-pound offensive tackle from Georgia Military College. One of two GMC linemen to commit to Kansas (Keyon Haughton), the two-star Williams picked KU over Florida A&M, South Alabama, Troy and Tulane.

• Daniel Wise – 6-2, 242-pound defensive end from Hebron High in Lewisville, Texas. Two-star prospect committed to KU last week and picked the Jayhawks over Colorado, Louisiana Tech, Missouri, SMU and Texas Tech.

• Traevohn Wrench – 6-foot, 180-pound running back from nearby Gardner-Edgerton High. Four-star back had offers from Iowa, Kansas State, Missouri and Nebraska and interest from seemingly everyone on the planet. Ranked as the 25th best running back in the country and the second best player in Kansas, Wrench is definitely a headliner in KU's current class.

Don't forget to check out our recruiting page, which includes links to all of the stories about these prospects and their commitments during the past several months.

Comments

Dirk Medema 10 months ago

Nice pick-up.

That basically fills out a new set of O & D players, though an OT or 2 would be nice, with 5 or so more spots available. Includes a nice assortment of HS vs. JC, players to help right away and others to develop for the future.

Larry Jackson 10 months ago

Another good Texas get! Keep recruiting out of Texas! Forego every place else, N.J., Washington, Bishop Miege, etc... Round out this recruiting class with Texans and be done with it. Texas takes H.S. f-ball seriously, ask Briles, Stoops, etc... Texas kids are D-1 ready.

Aaron Paisley 10 months ago

Texas is not the only state that produces talent. I'm not saying ignore recruiting Texas because is the best recruiting pool KU has easy access to. That said, it's important try and close the borders when there is a good talent in Kansas like Braden Smith who is likely headed out of state. If you go look at KU's commitment list and specifically at the HS commits, you'll see that all but 2 of them either local (Kansas and KC area) or Texas. One is from the Tampa area which is generally considered a top 5 recruiting area nationally, and the other is from the St. Louis area which is another area that should be a priority area for KU because it's the 3rd closes major metro area to the KU campus behind KC and Wichita.

Larry Jackson 10 months ago

In the last 10 years the majority of impact players for KU (Big 12 in general) have had TX origins. For instance, last season's defensive secondary. Ok, yes Florida produces f-ball players too. The rest of those areas you mentioned are suspect.

Brandon Mahon 10 months ago

I think one thing people forgets are all the players who red shirted last year... We have 4 OL this year and guys returning and who red shirted. I think we should look at getting the best players out there that are on the board. We get the best players that we can and make competition at as many positions that we can and make these kids better. One thing I think people forgot about is how many guys Weis kicked off the team when he first got here. We were in such a big hole.

Dirk Medema 10 months ago

We definitely have latent talent from last year. A bunch.

And while all the players that were jettisoned after Weis arrived got some pub, there wasn't nearly as much pub about all the players that left after the previous coaching change. That is the reason we needed so many JC's in the last class and this one. We had about half a class of Jr's & Sr's.

Mark Lindrud 10 months ago

I bet one of the receivers gets moved to corner. A nice mix with mostly hs guys. Another DT would be nice.

Brett McCabe 10 months ago

Next to Traevohn, this may be the most impressive commitment of the class. Beating Michigan State for a commute is quite impressive and this young man's skills are very intriguing.

Congrats to all!

Dirk Medema 10 months ago

Braggs and Watson are both rated higher than Darius, and right around Traevohn, depending on the recruiting service. Rivals has Derrick Neal rated ahead of Darius as well, and he does have a nice highlight tape. Right in the same group as DJ Williams. It has been a good week or so.

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