RECRUITING: Top Texas TE will take his time

One of the nation's best TE prospects says he's no lock for Texas. Do the Sooners have a shot?

TONY HILLS, TE, 6'6, 260, 4.6, ALIEF (ELSIK HS), TEXAS:

Tony's legend just continues to grow this summer as many now believe that he is the very best tight end in the country. At the Nike camp at Texas A&M this summer Hills was the runner up for MVP honors. We recently caught up with Tony to get his feel on the upcoming season and recruiting.

JH: Have you had a good summer?

TH: I have been at this weight for a good year and this is what I like to play at or maybe five pounds lighter at 255. I have improved in the weight room and I had a great time at the Nike camp. That was the first time I have ever been to a camp like that and I really enjoyed myself.

JH: What do you hope to improve on this upcoming year?

TH: I want to be more aggressive and I want to prove I can catch and run with the ball. I don't want to say I was timid, but I don't think I was as aggressive as I needed to be (last year). I just want a senior year where I can say to myself that I did everything that I could to help my team win the game. I know I tried hard last year, but I wouldn't say that I played with a ton of aggressiveness because I was too timid.

JH: Do you feel you will get the opportunity to catch more passes this year?

TH: I think coach will open up the playbook even more this year. He opened it up a little last year, but I think this upcoming year he will do even more of the same. I hope I can at least catch 25 passes or more.

JH: You have been able to earn your high ranking despite the fact you don't get much of an opportunity to catch the ball within your offense, that means teams feel great about your overall game. That has to be a good feeling to know that collegiate coaches believe you already have a total game?

TH: I feel great about what I have accomplished for myself, because I have proved that I am team player. I set high goals for myself and I hope that I will get more of an opportunity to catch the ball this year, but I don't want our team to force it. I can catch a lot of passes within the flow of our offense.

JH: How many total offers do you have?

TH: I have received an offer from Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Arizona, Arkansas, Baylor, UCLA, Colorado, Florida, Kansas, Nebraska, Purdue, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Tulane and Wisconsin, Iowa, Iowa State and LSU as well. I have about 20 total offers at this point. I don't have a favorite team at the moment and I am open when it comes to recruiting. I have decided that I want to evaluate every team and that I really want to take a serious look at everybody.

JH: Everybody seems to believe that you are a heavy lean to Texas, is that true?

TH: I think everybody thinks that because I live close to there (Austin). It is about two hours from here, so I think everybody assumes that. I can't say that I won't look at Texas, but I will look at a lot of other schools as well.

JH: You don't really want to mention teams, so let me ask about Oklahoma. Do you have an interest in the Sooners?

TH: I like them. I know they have a good program and they use their tight ends a great deal. They have an established program, but it seems on the rise at the same time. Sure, I have an interest in OU and will take a very close look at them.

JH: Do you feel you will take some visits during your season?

TH: No, I am going to concentrate on my senior year and then work on recruiting.

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