A&M commit familiar with hurricanes

After evacuating last week from Hurricane Gustav, A&M commit Patrick Lewis feels the pain of A&M fans in southeast Texas. What does the storm mean for his football schedule from here on out? What are his thoughts on the Aggies' start to the 2008 season? Where will he take official visits? Aggie Websider visits with Lewis about this and more!

In the state of Texas and Louisiana, people live and breathe football. The sport is an important, time-honored ritual played out on hundreds of festive, jam-packed football stadiums across the two states. However, football is taking a backseat these days as Hurricane Gustav ripped through the Bayou state last week and Hurricane Ike eyes the Houston area.

Texas A&M commitment Patrick Lewis of Reserve, Louisiana evacuated last week to Bentwood, Tennessee and he's thankful that he had a house to return to after Gustav.

"We got back Saturday and thanks to God there was no damage," Lewis said. "Our community was lucky. There were a few things tossed around, but really we were all thankful that there was little damage and we had a place to comeback to."

While the community was spared and the residents are relieved, the storm did do damage to the high school's football season. Last week's game with Patterson High was canceled for obvious reasons with the storm. However, this week's game with John Curtis High School has also been canceled. Is Lewis disappointed that his senior season has been disrupted?

"We've now had two games canceled. This week's game with John Curtis won't be played," Lewis said. "We have a lot of people who haven't come back after the storm and we don't have enough to field a team. It's sort of disappointing, but that's Mother Nature. With something like this you realize there are more important issues in life and I'm thankful right now."

Before evacuating last week, Lewis did get a phone call from Texas A&M head coach Mike Sherman and they talked about the previous week's upset to Arkansas State.

"He said they made too many mistakes and they will clean some things up. He told me he wants me to come prepared and ready to earn immediate playing time because he needs me," Lewis said. "He didn't seem worried about the game. He's a very confident man, and he knows he's going to turn it around at A&M."

Lewis is already preparing for an unofficial visit to College Station when the Aggies host Oklahoma. He's been in contact with fellow Texas A&M commitment and Louisiana native Jonathan Stewart and the two are looking forward to the trip.

"I met up with Jonathan Stewart on Facebook," Lewis said. "I told him I was going to the OU game and he wanted to go too. So we are going to meet up along the way and hang out down there."

Despite getting phone calls from other college coaches, the 6-foot-2, 290-pound offensive lineman says he won't be looking at other schools.

"Just tonight I received a call from Coach Wilson at Southern Miss. He knew I was committed, but he asked if it would be OK to call me just to keep in touch," Lewis said. "I told him he could, but I'm committed to Texas A&M and that won't change. I plan to take one official visit, and that's to Texas A&M."

Lewis is anxious to get back on the field after being away from the action for almost two weeks.

"Yeah, I'm ready to get going again," Lewis said. "I've been sitting in a hotel room watching football games on TV. That's about it. I tried to keep busy and workout. I ran up-and down the stairs in the hotel, and I lifted weights in the workout room, but that's about it. I'm ready to go."

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