With the release of the first set of Lone Star Recruiting Rankings for 2012, the debate on which prospect in the state of Texas has officially begun.
When it was all said and done, the initial debate came down to three - Austin High wide receiver Cayleb Jones, Rockdale linebacker Derek David and Aledo running back Johnathan Gray. One set the world on fire as a receiver in Central Texas, while another is a sideline-to-sideline Wildman at linebacker and the final guy carried his team on his back all the way to a state title.
As far as early impressions are concerned, the trio couldn't do any better, but in the end you've got to pick someone and the first No.1 prospect in the state for 2012 is Jones.
The 6-2, 185-pound Jones, who is the son of former Dallas Cowboys linebacker Robert Jones, dominated Central Texas as a sophomore, catching 91 passes for 1,158 yards and nine touchdowns. Possessing very good speed, tremendous ball skills and terrific after-the-catch ability, Jones projects as one of the top receiver prospects that the state has produced in the last decade.
"He's about as good of a young receiver as I've seen," one Division I college coach that recruits the area said. "He catches the football so naturally and he can do a little bit of everything. Throw it to him short and he can break you down and make you miss. If you come up on him, he's either going to run right by you or just out-jump your defender when the ball is in the air. His ability to go get the football makes him really hard to double."
While Jones has the look of a national top-25 prospect, both David and Gray look like possible five-star prospects as well. The 6-3, 215-pound David earned District 24-3A Newcomer of the Year honors after recording 93 tackles as a sophomore. Meanwhile, Gray might have been the MVP of the entire state after rushing for 2,798 yards and 50 touchdowns in 2009.
The rest of the top 10 is comprised of Brenham defensive tackle Malcolm Brown, Dallas A. Maceo Smith cornerback LaDarrell McNeil, Kilgore running back LaDarius Anthony, DeSoto offensive lineman Curtis Riser, Prosper defensive end Mario Edwards, Spring Dekaney running back Trey Williams and Brenham linebacker Troy Green.
Look here for the full list of this month's Lone Star Recruiting Top 100 list for the Class of 2012.