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January 29, 2010

Horns get another February win with Jeffcoat commit

Plano West defensive end Jackson Jeffcoat committed to Texas at 10:02 a.m. Friday in the school gym as the Longhorns add to another heralded recruiting class.

Jeffcoat was one of the nation's top uncommitted players just a few days before next Wednesday's signing day. Jeffcoat had narrowed his choices to Texas, Oklahoma and Houston after also looking strongly at USC and Arizona State.

A U.S. Army All-American, Jeffcoat is the son of former Cowboys star Jim Jeffcoat, who played at Arizona State and coaches at the University of Houston.

Jackson's twin sister Jacqueline Jeffcoat has signed to play women's basketball at Oklahoma.

"First off, I want to thank the University of Houston, thank my dad (Houston assistant coach Jim Jeffcoat), I love him to death. They've always been great to me. I also want to thank Oklahoma, they've been great also But my decision is, Texas," Jeffcoat said before cheers and applause broke out from the crowd.

The announcement brought to an end the recruiting saga of one of the most closely followed prospects in the 2010 class. The last couple of years have seen Jeffcoat and his family make trips to college campuses from east to west. Junior days, camps and five official visits were all part of the package.

In September, the field was trimmed to six - Arizona St., Florida, Houston, USC, Texas, and Oklahoma. Jeffcoat took in everything he could about each of his final choices.

Eventually USC and Florida fell from his list along with Arizona St., and as Jeffcoat entered the gymnasium on Friday morning, it was known the decision would come from the pool of Houston, Oklahoma, and Texas.

It was a tough decision for Jeffcoat, but at the end he knew Texas was the school for him.

"I felt most comfortable at Texas. It's not that I didn't feel comfortable everywhere else. Everywhere else was great. That's why it was such a hard decision and took so long," Jeffcoat said. "They all are great schools, I just felt right with Texas."

The decision brings into play some interesting dynamics. Jeffcoat's twin sister, Jacqueline, has committed to play at Oklahoma. His father coaches defensive ends at Houston. Despite those allegiance, Jeffcoat's family has let him make his own decision and offered nothing but support regardless of on which school he decided.

"I believe my dad is the best coach in the country," Jeffcoat said. "Some things didn't work out, but I feel like (Texas) is the right place for me. My dad has always been there for me and always will be there for me."

In joining the Texas Longhorn family he becomes the first five-star of the Texas recruiting class and the eighth Rivals100 prospect.

Jeffcoat is ranked No. 12 in the Rivals100 and No. 1 in the Rivals.com Texas Postseason Top 100.

As a senior he tallied 87 tackles (67 solos, 20 assists), 11 TFLs, 22 QB pressures, and 8.5 sacks on his way to district defensive MVP, 5A defensive player of the year, and Parade All-American honors.

"I think he's someone that could play both defensive end positions. That's what I like about him," Rivals.com National Analyst Barry Every said. "He's a great athlete. He has long arms and those long arms make him appear to be bigger than his actual 6-3. He's strong enough to control offensive tackles and use his hands to release and get off of them. They don't come any greater than he looks."



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