Local defensive end discusses SMU offer

A DFW-Area pass rusher holds an SMU offer and has narrowed his list down to three. Is he considering playing on the Hilltop?

SMU is still searching for a fierce pass rushing defensive end to add to the Class of 2013 but won't have to look any farther than their own backyard.

At 6-foot-4, 220-pounds, Lewisville's Hendrick Ekpe fits the mold perfectly, which is why he picked up an offer this past spring.

"I really like the education and the coaching staff. Bert Hill is a really great coach. He coaches well too," Epke said. "We've talked a few times, and he's told me I could come in and play defensive end. He said I could come in and possibly get some early playing time. I would also like to stay close to home so that's a plus."

The two-star prospect was on the Hilltop for an unofficial visit last month and loved what he saw from both an academic and athletic standpoint.

"I visited earlier this summer. Coach Hill showed me around campus. I got to see the dorms, the basketball court and the football facilities," Ekpe said. "It was really nice. My favorite part about the visit was just going in and being able to see the weight room and the locker room. It was just really nice."

Ekpe currently holds six offers but recently cut his list down to three- SMU, Houston and Minnesota. Minnesota may hold a slight advantage since Ekpe's brother, Scott, is a defensive tackle for the Gophers and has been trying to persuade his younger sibling to join him up north.

"I like Houston because of the school and the coaching staff. It's basically those two things with all the schools in my top three," Ekpe said. "With Minnesota it's especially the coaching staff. I've gotten to meet three of their coaches so I feel close to them. My brother has talked up Minnesota and it would be nice to play with him."

Ekpe says he plans to make a decision before his senior season so he can focus on helping his team make the playoffs after posting a disappointing 2-8 record last season.

With two-a-days just around the corner, Ekpe has been training vigorously in order to be ready for those long and hot practices.

"I feel my best attributes are my speed off the ball and strength. I've been working on those two things the most this summer," Ekpe said. "I've been in the weight room. I've been jumping rope to get quicker and faster. I definitely want to up my sacks this year, and help my team do well."

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