Position: Defensive End
Size: 6-foot-3, 255 lbs.
Year: Redshirt Senior
High School: Stratford (Houston)
A former two-star recruit, Pruitt was one of the last additions to SMU’s 2012 recruiting class. SMU offered him in January 2012 after visiting his high school and he committed a week later on an official visit. He picked SMU over UTSA but also had offers from Colorado, New Mexico and Texas State.
Jarvis Pruitt played in 11 games (no starts) as a redshirt junior, recording 19 tackles and two sacks. His 4.5 tackles for loss were tied for third on the team. He provided some pass rush off the bench behind starters Justin Lawler and Andy McCleneghen. Solely on numbers, Pruitt was one of SMU’s better rushers. But he was inconsistent all season as SMU’s pass rush struggled mightily.
On the first day of spring practice, Chad Morris called Pruitt out as one of the older players he wanted to see step up. Pruitt responded with a good spring and took a lot of snaps with the first-team defense, playing defensive end opposite Lawler. With Lawler out in the spring game, Pruitt notched two tackles (one for loss). Morris said he was pleased with Pruitt’s growth and response to a challenge.
Even after a strong spring, Pruitt is competing for a starting spot. Redshirt freshmen twins Delontae and Michael Scott, true freshmen Demerick Gary and Michael Badejo, and versatile redshirt freshman Chris Biggurs are all fighting to earn snaps right away and are pass-rushers with a bit more upside. Pruitt has some speed and bend that he showed in the spring to be an effective pass rusher opposite Lawler, but he needs to bring it more consistently. He’s also a little bigger than some of the freshmen and more disciplined playing the run than Badejo and the Scotts, who were long, speedy pass-rushers first in high school. Pruitt has a good chance of opening the season as a starter, but the coaches won’t be afraid to bump him down for a younger rusher if his good spring proves to be a fluke. It’s hard to imagine him not having a role on defense in some way.