Gardner receives new offers

After moving to Texas to play "big-time football," Port Arthur Memorial cornerback Desmond Gardner has seen interest in his abilities skyrocket. Aggie Websider's David Sandhop visits with the blue-chipper about the latest offers and where the Aggies stand in his list of favorites.

A good cover cornerback prospect is always in high demand, especially with so many speed athletes moving to the offensive side of the ball. Thus, it comes as no surprise that a relative newcomer to the lone star state is attracting the attention of many Division I college coaches. Junior Desmond Gardner of Port Arthur Memorial (TX) has several offers in hand, including two recent additions this week from the Big 12 and the Pac-10.

"I was just offered by Texas A&M and Arizona State," Gardner said. "I already had offers from Arizona, Baylor, TCU, and Arkansas."

There's good reason for the interest. The 5-foot-11, 186-pound cornerback has been clocked at 4.40 at the school and his resume' includes a junior season with four interceptions, one touchdown, and 47 tackles. So what is the strength of his game?

"I play real aggressive, both in coverage and in run support," Gardner said. "I'm always going all out forcing the action. I play every play of every game at full speed."

Gardner does see room for improvement and is working hard in the offseason to enhance his technique and his ability to react and break quicker on the ball. His goal is to extend his playing career after college, but he also realizes that he can't count on football his whole life.

"I'm just looking to further my career and find a school that can help me develop my skills," Gardner said. "But I also want to go somewhere for a good education because there are no guarantees in football. I'd like to study architectural engineering in college."

At this point, the Titans' cornerback has no leaders and has no strong feelings about the schools and the recruiting process. Gardner recently moved to Port Arthur, Texas from Virginia to live with his father and play big-time high school football.

"Location isn't a factor for me. I just came down from Virginia so I'm not familiar with the schools down here," Gardner said. "It's too soon for me to name a leader. I'll try to narrow my options sometime in the summer, and if possible have a decision right before the season starts."

Gardner is intrigued by his latest offer from Texas A&M. Van Malone has been his primary recruiter, and while he's never been to the campus and knows very little about the university, he is somewhat familiar with the reputation of the Aggie football program.

"Texas A&M is a good football program in a big-time conference," Gardner said. "They have a good history of defensive backs."

Gardner plans to attend several summer camps, but he has yet to schedule his trips.

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