January 10, 2008

Local running back eyeing Texas

One of the qualities in a running back that the Texas Longhorns have historically coveted in the Mack Brown era is versatility. The ability to catch the football, block and play special teams can sometimes be the deciding factors for the staff when choosing which players at the position to recruit.

For Austin (Texas) Westlake running back Ryan Swope, the key to his game is his versatility and as he prepares to jump knee-deep into college football recruiting, he's hopeful that the Longhorn coaching staff is paying close attention.

The 6-0, 187-pound Swope led the Chaparrals rushed for 1,311 yards and 14 touchdowns, while also leading the team with 23 receptions for 521 yards and seven touchdowns.

Those are impressive numbers for sure and it would appear that the Longhorns taken notice because Swope has an invite to UT's Junior Day on February 23rd.

"I've talked with Coach Davis a few times and they've got my tape," Swope said. "He came out last spring and he watched me run the ball. Hopefully, I caught his eye doing that last spring. I've been calling him and getting to know him and going to their games."

Swope's invitation to the Junior Day actually came from Texas head coach Mack Brown, who personally invited the Central Texas star. As you might expect the home-town college ranks very high on Swope's early list of schools. In fact, it's safe to see that the Longhorns are a clear front-runner if they decide to offer a scholarship.

"I've been growing up in Austin ever since I was little and I've always wanted to go (to Texas)," Swope said. "It's been my school that I've grown up watching and it would be a dream come true to come play for the University of Texas."

In addition to hearing from the Longhorns, Swope has an early offer from Duke and he's receiving heavy mail from the likes of LSU, Oregon, Nebraska, Texas A&M and Texas Tech on a daily basis.

"I want to go play somewhere where I can play, but I wouldn't mind redshirting my freshman year," Swope said. "I want to go somewhere and play running back, but I want to help the team out in any way that I can."

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