Close Race For Reed Between State Programs

Decision time came Friday, April 23, 2010 for four-star defender Cedric Reed of Cleveland, Texas. A press conference was held in Reed's school library where he made his verbal commitment to the Texas Longhorns. We caught up with Reed for a quick word afterwards.

In the Reed household, there were plenty of long nights. Whether it was college coaches selling them their program or one of the many recruiting networks calling for interviews, Cleveland (TX) defensive end Cedric Reed and family had a number of talks about where he will play college football.

But on Friday, April 23 at noon in his high school library at a special press conference, he let it be known.

"I was recruited by many football programs and I want to thank all of them for recruiting me and I narrowed it down to these three hats right here," Reed said during the press conference. "After careful consideration, I would like to announce that I am verbally committing to the University of Texas."

For the event, two other hats sat on the table along with Texas, Oklahoma and Texas A&M. LSU was the other program that lined out the Final Four. The 6-foot-6, 245-pound defender had more than 40 offers, but in the end it came down, really, to the school within the Lone Star borders.

And though the squad out in College Station was narrowly edged out, Reed was thankful for the experience.

"This is a big decision for me. It was awfully close between Texas and Texas A&M," Reed said. "I would like to thank (assistant) coach Terrell Williams at A&M for doing everything he could. From being my recruiter, to being my friend and just being a person to me."

But despite all of that, in the end, Reed was all Hook ‘Em.

"Texas brought a family atmosphere to me. My father always said that there is life after football," Reed said. "Some things will go right and some things won't, but being at Texas just felt like home. I want to thank UT for being who they were to me. I'm glad I have made this decision and sure I did the right one."

Along with the festivities that surrounded the press conference, this day will hold other memories for Reed as well. He decided to give his verbal commitment, on this day, in honor of his deceased mother.

Today was her birthday.

"This day is special to me because I chose today to do this in honor of my mother and her birthday," Reed said. "The whole time during the process, I was thinking about my mother. Where would she want me to go and what would she want me to do, in class and out of class. I thought to honor her this day, a day I will remember for the rest of my life, not only through high school or college, but also for the rest of my life.

"I will look back years from now and remember this day."

As will everyone involved. And as he reflects back on the days when his mother was by his side, he recalled a few things she used to say to him. 

This is advice that he still uses today.

"Work hard. Don't be last in anything and go where you trust," Reed said. "Pick who you hang with wisely. You know, that is the annual mother talk. It really helped me through this."

Reed is a four-star athlete on the listings and in the No. 9 ranked defensive end in the country. As a junior, he recorded 86 tackles and 11 sacks for the state champion Indian team last season.

For him it was a fun ride, but relieved that it is over.

"I feel good. I prayed about it and made my decision," Reed said. "My family and friends are happy for me and that feels good too. I feel I made the right choice."

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