With Texas A&M head coach Mike Sherman still pulling double duty as the Houston Texans offensive coordinator and still pulling together his staff, he's had to get creative during this critical phase of the recruiting process. While many college programs are hosting big official visit weekends, the Aggies held a greet-and-meet dinner reception for commits and recruits on Friday night before Sherman had to leave to prepare for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Cy-Fair offensive lineman Chris Lathrop was one of the commitments who made the hour drive to meet with Sherman and selected staff, and the Scout.com three-star prospect liked what he heard.
"Coach Sherman came table by table and talked with each of us individually. He's a nice guy and seems like a great coach," Lathrop said. "He talked about running his pro style offense and that he really wants to focus his efforts on developing us as offensive linemen. That's what he coached in college."
After the dinner, the players went down to the locker room and then on to the playing turf at Kyle Field.
"We went down to the locker rooms and they had my jersey hanging up in one of the lockers. Seeing it gave me some reality that this is going to happen, that I'll be playing for the Aggies next year," Lathrop said. "Then, we all got to go down to Kyle Field and watch a video. It's pretty amazing being down there when it's empty. You just think about how crazy it is when you're there and the place is full of fans."
Lathrop was at the unofficial visit with two other offensive line commits, and after talking they are all on the same page when it comes to Sherman and what he can do in their development.
"I talked with Jeff (Hyde) and Leroy (Chevalier) quite a bit Friday," Lathrop said. "We all think he's going to be great here at A&M, and especially for us. He specializes in developing offensive linemen and knows how to get us ready for the next level. We're all pretty excited."
Lathrop had previously talked with Sherman about his future in Aggieland, and it sounds like the new coach is expecting contributions sooner rather than later from the Cy-Fair product.
"He asked me how much I weighed and I told him 275. He said don't gain too much extra weight. He likes linemen who are quick and strong, and build weight the right way," Lathrop said. "He told me to work hard that he needs me to come in next summer ready to earn playing time because they are thin right now."
Lathrop also discussed his senior season and the progress he's made over the last four months.
"I think I made huge strides this year. I'm understanding the game more and what it takes to be a good lineman," Lathrop said. "I've learned to focus on moving my feet and taking smaller steps. That's really helped in my pass protection," Lathrop said. "I've also learned to be more aggressive and fire off the ball. I played with the mentality of a defensive lineman this year, taking the action to my opponent."
Lathrop will be setting up his official visit in the near future. It appears that Texas A&M is looking to bring in many of their commits and recruiting targets on the weekends of January 12 and January 19.
Lathrop discusses evening with Sherman
Aggie Digest Top Stories
Evans Leads Defensive MaturityTexas A&M senior safety Justin Evans met with the media Tuesday in advance of the Aggies Saturday road match-up with South Carolina.
Aggie DigestYesterday at 10:15 AM
Game Week Media: South CarolinaThe Texas A&M Aggies have solidified themselves in the top 10 heading into their week's SEC road game with South Carolina. The Aggies met with the media Tuesday in advance of this…
Aggie DigestYesterday at 9:52 AM
Post Game Media: ArkansasThe Texas A&M Aggies moved to 4-0 on the season with a 45-24 win over Arkansas inside AT&T Stadium in Dallas. Kevin Sumlin and several players spoke with the media afterwards.
Aggie DigestSunday at 7:22 AM
Game Balls: ArkansasThe Texas A&M Aggies squared off with the Arkansas Razorbacks Saturday in their annual game in Dallas. The Aggies came away with an impressive 45-24 win.
Aggie DigestSunday at 5:45 AM