The Hilltop Review

Every Saturday morning, the Pony Stampede staff provides exclusive stories and information on SMU basketball, football, and recruiting that you can't find anywhere else!

Barrett Still Interested In SMU

By EJ Holland

It seems like these days Dallas Skyline offensive tackle Ty Barrett is always on the road. He was at Texas Tech junior day last weekend and made an unofficial to TCU the weekend before that. Barrett hasn't made his way to SMU just yet. But that doesn't mean he's lost interest.

"SMU is still a school I'm considering," he said. "I know I didn't make it to junior day, but I had about 20-30 junior day invites so I had to cut things down and still enjoy some of my weekends. But SMU is close to home, and I'm going to visit later in the spring."

It would be a big mistake for SMU to lose contact with Barrett despite his impressive offer list. SMU wide receivers coach Jason Phillips personally visited with Barrett at Skyline to extend the junior day invitation but has failed to follow up.

"I haven't talked to him at all. He came up to the school and told me and Victor Evans and Emmanuel Harris that he really liked us. I know they went to junior day and talked to him but he didn't call me to see why I didn't go," Barrett said. "I think I'm going to give him a call soon though to see if I can go to a practice."

The 6-foot-4, 300-pound offensive tackles holds offers quite a few BCS programs including Baylor, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Texas Tech, which appears to be an early favorite.

"Texas Tech is really high and probably at the top. That was the best trip I've been on," Barrett said. "I like TCU and Michigan and Ohio State are starting to talk to me a lot so we'll see."

Barrett says he is enjoying the recruiting process and doesn't know exactly when he'll be making his final decision.



Clark Hopes To Attend SMU Junior Day

By Russell Palmer

After spending his sophomore year of high school backing up the nation's number one overall player in Mario Edwards, Denton Ryan DE Sekou Clark is ready to make a name for himself.

Some of the top programs in the nation have checked in constantly on the 6-foot-3, 210-pound end, and have invited him to their respective junior days.

"I'm at the Kansas State junior day right now." he said, "I also went to the LSU junior day, as well as the Baylor one, and was invited to the Northwestern, Texas and SMU junior days but couldn't make it."

Clark says he is open to every school that is recruiting him, and is especially interested in the Mustangs and has been in contact recently with his area recruiter Bert Hill.

"Coach Hill called me and invited me to the second SMU junior day, so I'm going to try and go to that." he said, "I am very interested in SMU. I took a visit earlier this fall and like what I saw. It seemed like a nice place, a place I could fit into well."

Clark, who admitted he has no idea for when he wants to make his decision, is focused on getting ready for his senior campaign, and feels like he has pinpointed areas of his game that he can improve on.

"I want to get bigger, stronger, and faster," he said. "I want to play early, and I understand that you have to be ready physically in order to do that."

Although SMU has yet to offer, Clark says he is still interested in what the Mustangs have to offer, which says a lot, considering some of the other schools that are after him.

"I think LSU is close to offering, along with Texas A&M, and a few others like Ole Miss, Notre Dame and Florida State," he said.



Bray Hopes To See SMU Soon

By Beionny Mickles

Pottsboro (TX) offensive lineman Charlie Bray did not make it to the SMU junior day, but that doesn't mean he isn't interested. Bray, who says he plans to schedule a make-up visit to the Hilltop, was supposed to take a trip to LSU but ended up missing both events because of a family emergency.

"Since I'm really close to SMU, I could go down there at any time," the 6-foot-6 325-pound Bray said. "When LSU sent me the invite, my dad said since we're so close to Dallas I'm better off going to LSU since they were on the same weekend."

Bray, who is being recruited by SMU defensive line coach Bert Hill, says he considers SMU to be one of the schools that is high on his interest list.

"It stands pretty high," Bray said. "They are probably the most interested in me. Coach Hill seems to really like me and I like everybody down there too."

Justin Lawler, a teammate of Bray's who has already signed his letter of intent to SMU, was also one of Hill's recruits. Bray says that he and Lawler have been friends for a long time, and it was partially because of Hill visiting Lawler that he got exposure to SMU.

"Justin, man, he's like my role model," Bray said. "He's always in the weight room lifting and we've just been best friends since like the third grade. He's like a brother to me."

There are two other schools Bray says he is big on in addition to SMU. Because a good number of his family members are from North Carolina, Bray says he has always been partial to Duke, which has already expressed interest in him. The other school is Texas A&M, where his brother attended school.

Bray says he hopes to take a college tour up to the northeast soon to possibly take a look at Duke as well as Yale.

Cunningham Ready For Final Stretch





Bogenschutz Hoping For Offer

2014 Carthage quarterback Blake Bogenschutz has been after an SMU offer for quite some time and his recent trip to the Hilltop for junior day was another chance for him to be around the SMU program and make an impression on the coaching staff.

"They talked about recruiting. They talked about what they had to offer academically to us," Bogenschutz said. "They broke us down by position and had a bunch of different people talk from different departments in the school."

Then after time on the academic side, Bogenschutz was able to meet with his position coach Dan Morrison, who offered tips on how to improve before next season. Timmy Chang also chimed in.

"He talked about five major points for playing the position. Using your eyes for example then he rated those points on importance," Bogenschutz said. "He said you need to be looking at receivers, he talked about footwork, he talked about training your eyes better and then velocity on the ball because you need to have a strong arm to play in the program."

After meeting with Morrison, Bogenschutz and his dad got the chance to talk with his recruiting coach, Bert Hill, who made sure they knew he would be around in the spring.

"He talked about how he was going to get around to each of our schools so he can evaluate film on us in the spring. He was going to be coming by spring practice," Bogenschutz said.

While Bogenschutz would love an offer, he knows space is limited for the class so he is just staying patient.

"He mentioned they were just going to offer one quarterback in this class, which they do every class I guess, but he said there were a few they were evaluating a few of us and I was one of them," Bogenschutz said. "He didn't say if he was close to offering, and I didn't want to put pressure on anybody. Just staying patient with everybody."

Bogenschutz will keep up the hard work to try and secure his first offer, but SMU and UNT are right there and one may be close to offering soon.



SMU Targeting El Paso Athlete

By EJ Holland

El Paso Chapin athlete Collin Bailey received a junior day invitation from SMU last month but decided to instead check out Texas State and UTSA.

"Since they were both having their junior days on the same weekend, I thought it would be cool to go down there to the San Antonio area," Bailey said. "I liked both schools a lot. But I felt Texas State was the better program. They are on the rise."

But Bailey does hope to make it to SMU's second junior day in April and has extremely high interest in the Mustangs.

"I really like the program," he said. "I like that it's close to home and that they can hang with bigger schools. Coach (Bert) Hill seems pretty interested and we've been emailing back and forth. I'm set on going down there soon."

The 5-foot-8, 170-pounder rushed for 1,721 yards and logged 320 yards receiving last season. Bailey feels his 4.5 speed and elusiveness would allow him to be a great fit in SMU's Run N' Shoot offense.

"I can see myself playing running back in their offense," Bailey said. "But I I can also play slot. I did a little bit of both this year."

Bailey also plans to visit North Texas and Rice in the near future.



Local WR Attends SMU Junior Day

Russell Palmer

Prosper wide receiver Marcus Haskins is coming off a season in which he averaged nine yards a catch but is ready to step into a bigger role in his senior season, and hopes he can make a bigger impact on the field with the departure of Torii Hunter Jr.

Some local programs also believe Haskins is ready to do so, including SMU, who sent a junior day invite his way. Haskins accepted the invitation and liked what he saw from the Mustangs.

"Junior day was awesome," he said. "The campus was lovely, the facilities were really nice, and it was cool to be able to meet the other players and see what the program was about overall. A few of the coaches said they were going to come to my school to check me out and a few of my teammates."

Haskins said the SMU coaches were also impressed by his size and believed he could fit nicely into the Run N' Shoot and the 6-foot-2, 190-pounder agrees.

Haskins, who does not currently hold any offers, says, he has been receiving more and more calls and letters from various programs, all of whom want to see him at their camps this summer.

"Right now I'm going through the process of deciding which camps to go to," he said. "With scheduling and other things my family and I are trying to just make sure I can go to as many camps as possible."

But for now, Haskins is focused mainly on training for the upcoming season and has some areas of his game he is trying to improve on.

"I'm trying to get faster. I think I'm pretty fast right now, but I want to become more explosive," he said. "I've also been doing a lot of strength and conditioning to try and get ready for the college game."



John Tyler Athlete Visits SMU

By Beionny Mickles

Tyler John Tyler quarterback Nick Cain came to the Hilltop for junior day. Cain, who is being recruited as a slot wide receiver, says SMU is one of the schools he is interested in.

"I just went up there to see how it was. I like it," the 5-foot-9 165-pound signal caller said. "That's one of my choices as far as place I wanted to go. It was one of my favorite schools."

One factor that could affect Cain's outlook on SMU is the fact that he has a relative who currently starts at the same position he is being recruited at.

Slot receiver Jeremy Johnson, who was also quarterback for John Tyler, just so happens to be Cain's cousin. Cain says he has talked to Johnson about SMU and has learned a little bit about what it takes to get to the Hilltop and stay there.

"He told me it's fun but they're all about academics," Cain said. "He told me that I'd have to come there and work if I'm going to go."

While on the Hilltop, Cain said he talked to his recruiter, defensive line coach Bert Hill only for a short while. Cain says that Hill reinforced SMU's commitment to academics by saying ‘he looks at test scores when he's recruiting.'

Cain, who says he has received letters from Baylor, SMU, TCU and Oklahoma State, was also invited to attend Baylor's junior day but did not to attend.

Although he spoke highly of SMU, Cain does not have them in his top three at this point. Cain says Texas A&M, Baylor and TCU are at the top of his list right now in that order. Cain does not yet hold an offer.

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