Among the linebackers they've started to show interest in is Houston Strake Jesuit prospect Emmanuel Ellerbee.
The 6-foot-2, 210-pounder had a big junior season that saw him rack up 92 tackles, 3 fumble recoveries and 6 quarterback hurries. For his efforts, Ellerbee was named first-team All-District 17-5A.
Ellerbee made the drive north to Ft. Worth on April 6th to watch the Frogs' last practice of the spring and had a chance to tour the facilities afterwards. Although the practice didn't involve any live action, Ellerbee still walked away impressed with what he saw; especially Gary Patterson's intensity as a coach.
"I thought it was really cool, I saw the intensity of Coach Patterson which I like," he said. "I like it when the head coach is the person running the defense because you can go to him with questions along with your position coach. He understands the game from your point of view, opposed to an offensive coach. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with that. Coach Patterson is into it and intense with his players, he's energetic with his players and I thought that was cool about the practice the most."
Ellerbee also liked what he saw in TCU's state of the art facilities.
"I think everything was amazing," he said of the facilities. "The weight room seemed like a place you can get some work done and I saw machines that I have never seen before that works different muscles that I didn't think you could actually work."
TCU's graduation rate for their football players is among the highest in the entire country. Which is why it should come as no surprise that another aspect of the visit Ellerbee thoroughly enjoyed was meeting with the academic staff and discussing the Frogs' approach to helping each player excel in the classroom.
"They sat us down and they had a whole academic presentation on how they're get the opportunity for you to sit down with your own personal tutor for each subject or any class you're struggling on," he said. "They're not students who took the classes a long time ago, but they're students who might've taken the class a year ago with the same professors so they know what to expect."
With a shortage at linebacker, Ellerbee was informed by the TCU coaches that he is a prospect that they will continue to watch closely this spring.
"They told me that something they're looking for is linebackers and they told me they would come and see me in the spring," he said. "They did express to me that have a big need for linebackers."
What is he looking for in a program?
"First and foremost when it comes to me choosing a college I'm a student-athlete and academics is the biggest thing in my family," Ellerbee said. "My father always tells me that someone can take my knees away from me but no one can take away your mind. When it comes to me choosing a school I always have to look at the academics first and foremost. That's the biggest selling point to me.
"The second thing is the intensity of the coaches and the camaraderie of the players. Is there good intensity with the coaching and do the players want to be there and do they like the system? Also, the type of defense, I can see myself playing in any type of defense but the defensive scheme does play a big role of what college I choose."
Ellerbee doesn't have any more visits set to any particular school at the moment and is instead getting focused on his team's spring camp that is approaching in a few weeks.