Turning Heads

Kaplan (LA.) defensive end Jalen Bates is making the rounds visiting camps and schools in search of the right fit. There is no shortage of suitors for the 2015 three-star prospect. RaiderPower.com caught up with Bates for an update of his recruitment.

When RaiderPower.com last talked with Kaplan (La.) defensive end Jalen Bates in May, he was fresh off a dominating performance at his school's spring game which was attended by Texas Tech coaches Kevin Curtis and John Scott.

Since then, the 6-foot-5, 240-pound three-star prospect has been touring the region checking out several schools and turning heads with a combination of size and athleticism. One of the camps he attended was a Red Raider satellite camp in the Houston area earlier this month.

"It was real fun. It was lively," Bates said. "The coaching staff is young and rowdy so that made it fun. The linebacker drills were a challenge. That was my first time working at linebacker so it was challenging but at the same time fun, because I learned stuff."

Bates, who currently plays defensive end in a three-point stance, added that Texas Tech wants him to play the Bandit linebacker position, currently played by junior standout Pete Robertson. So how did he do during the camp as a stand-up outside backer?

"After the linebacker drills I went through 1 on 1's with the D-Linemen," Bates said. "I came off the edge as an outside linebacker in a two-point stance and dominated."

Bates has also visited or camped with Louisiana-Lafayette, Southern Miss, Mississippi State, Tulane and Texas A&M. The Aggies have since offered him.

"It [Texas A&M] was cool, there was a lot of construction going on so I didn't get to see much but the renovations they're doing to the facilities are awesome," Bates said. "Seems like a cool place. They're in the running."

Bates, who is up to 15 offers, plans on visiting Michigan, LSU and Mississippi State again in July.

With Bates blowing up during the summer camp season where does Texas Tech, who he named as a favorite in May, now stand with him?

"I don't have a top five but I do know Texas Tech will be among the finalist when I make a decision," Bates said.

He added he plans on making an official visit to Lubbock as soon as he can next season and he plans on announcing his decision during Kaplan's Homecoming sometime in September.

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