Replacing Brett Pierce is a tall order - literally. Not only was he Stanford's best tight end this year, but the NFL-bound Cardinal senior brought the size of an offensive tackle that allowed him to dominate as a run blocker and also go up for the tough balls above defenses. Pierce today played his final game in a Stanford helmet when he suited up for the victorious West squad in the 79th East-West Shrine game, and it is only fitting that 33 miles away a 6'6" long-armed athletic prep tight end was taking his recruiting visit to size up the Cardinal.
North Mesquite High School senior Pannel Egboh (Mesquite, TX) is at The Farm at this moment on his third official visit, and it is no surprise that his three visit schools sit at the top of his recruiting list. In December he took trips to Duke (12/5) and Colorado State (12/12), and he arrived Saturday at Stanford for his current visit. All three have offered and all three want him to play tight end.
"I'd put Stanford #1, Duke #2 and Colorado State #3 probably right now," the 6'6" TE/DE revealed this week to The Bootleg. "I have a basketball game Friday night, so I'll arrive Saturday and Stanford and stay through Monday morning."
His compliments about each of his first two visit schools put pressure on the Cardinal this weekend, and he particularly remarked at how Duke and CSU both showed him on film how much they use the tight end in their offense. Stanford will certainly counter this weekend, but the senior from Texas says that he has other factors in play.
"The biggest thing is the campus," Egboh explains. "The Stanford coaches have told me such incredible things about it that I can't wait to see if it lives up to the hype."
"Coach Mike Stoops has assured me that I still have an offer from them," the recruit notes about Arizona, which has undergone a coaching transition recently. "I have to decide between visits to Arizona and Army. Army has not offered me but is recruiting me pretty hard."
Reading between the lines, that bodes poorly for the Wildcats, if their offer puts them on even ground with an offer-less West Point.
But these last visits may never come to be. Egboh expects to get a good read on his top school this weekend and could have a decision soon.
"I'll be really, really close to a decision," he hints. "I've been talking with Coach [Tom] Quinn and Coach [Buddy] Teevens and they have me pretty excited about coming our for my Stanford visit. I want to see how the campus looks, what the football facilities are like and how they balance football with their great academics. I know how good the education is there, but I really would like them to show me how they ballance that with football."
Again reading between the lines, Egboh has the expectation that he will probably love what he sees at Stanford this weekend. He hold the Card number one above his two other visit schools, and it would take some fiasco(s) to derail this positive recruiting momentum with the Texas tight end. I fully expect a commitment to come during his visit or quickly thereafter. Pannel Egboh is a rangy athlete with size and mobility who could be a monster in college, and his commitment could be one of the biggest yet in this 2004 class.
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