It's clear SMU is need of some serious help at nose tackle.
Why the staff hardly has any offers out at the position remains a mystery, but defensive line coach Bert Hill did extend a scholarship to Highland C.C. product Mickey Stewart last week. A JUCO prospect, Stewart could immediately help fill the void.
"One of my family friends helps me with recruiting, and he sent Coach Hill my tape. He said that Coach Hill got back to him and wanted to hear from me so I called him, and he offered," Stewart said. "He said that he liked me because of my versatility and my quickness off the line. He said he wants me to play nose for him."
At 6-foot-3, 305-pounds, Stewart played both defensive tackle and defensive end for Highland C.C. this year. Although he says he didn't have quite the year he wanted to, he picked up offers from Appalachian State, Arkansas State, East Carolina, Idaho, Miami (OH) and Ohio.
Stewart believes he can make the transition to nose tackle and embraces the possibility of playing in SMU's 3-4 scheme.
"I think that would be a good fit for me because I can move for my size. I have great speed coming off the ball," Stewart said. "I think I got a lot better at that playing JUCO ball. Playing here has also made me mature and straightened me out."
Stewart, who attended Oswego (IL), had academic issues coming out of high school but has since raised his grades. Stewart will graduate from Highland C.C. in May and will have three years to play two.
At the moment, Stewart has no favorites and has only set up one official visit. He says taking a trip to SMU is ‘a possibility,' but he wants to do more research on the program first.
"I'm pretty interested in SMU, but I'm even keel with a lot of schools," Stewart said. "I don't know much about SMU, but I've heard some good things, and Coach Hill also had some good things to say. I watched some of their game against UCF, and they played tough even though they lost."
Stewart doesn't have a timetable to make a decision but is visiting Idaho next month and plans to make other officials in January. Stewart took just one unofficial this fall –to Northern Illinois—and says UNI is one of three schools recruiting him the hardest at the moment.
"Indiana hasn't offered, but they are giving me a strong look. Idaho offered, and they've been in contact a lot," Stewart said. "UNI is coming at me too. I really enjoyed my visit there. They have a good program and good people. Right now, I'm just taking my time."
JUCO Nose Tackle Talks SMU Offer
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