Lockhart: Top Six Schools Even

Ennis four-star defensive end James Lockhart is one of the most heavily recruited players in the 2015 class. He recently narrowed his choices of schools and Texas Tech made the list. RaiderPower.com caught up with him for an update on where he stands with Texas Tech and his overall recruitment.

James Lockhart, the No. 1 defensive end prospect in the state of Texas for the class of 2015, made one thing perfectly clear: he has no in-state nor power-conference preference.

"It doesn't matter if I'm playing in Texas…or freakin' Oregon," he said.

The Ennis four-star product, a heavily recruited prospect rated as the No. 10 defensive end in his class and a top 100 overall prospect by Scout.com, whittled his list of suitors down to six in late May. Alabama, Baylor, Florida State, Ohio State, Texas A&M and Texas Tech made the cut.

The playmaking right defensive end–standing at 6-foot-3 and weighing 250 pounds–was a force on defense for Ennis in 2013, part of a 14-1 season which culminated in a Class 4A Division II semifinal appearance. Lockhart has been lauded by scouts as highly athletic and versatile; he has played a bit of linebacker and defensive line in his high school career.

While speaking to Lockhart, he said all six schools have "an equal chance" to win him over. Even at this point in his recruitment, he has no preferences.

"I'm just trying to get a feel for each individual school [right now]," he said.

Lockhart has visited four of the six schools on his list, save Florida State and Ohio State. Follow-up visits are yet to be determined, but he plans on making the rounds again soon. Texas A&M and Alabama – both SEC West rivals – are schools which Lockhart specified were on his short list, which he plans on making this summer.

What about Texas Tech?

"I do not know when I'll be visiting the [Red] Raiders," Lockhart said. Recall that he has already visited Texas Tech once during the 2013 season.

Lockhart did note, however, that he was being recruited by Tech offensive coordinator Eric Morris, and that he has gotten "a very positive vibe" from Texas Tech's coaching staff.

"I've got teammates there [at Tech]," Lockhart noted. (For example, Ennis cornerback Jahshawn Johnson, who signed with the Red Raiders in 2014.) "The atmosphere is great. I feel like I could get along with the players. I'm just trying to find out what's best for me right now."

As for his final recruiting decision, Lockhart said that he "has no fixed timeline" and his decision will definitely go through to his parents, although he asserts the fact the final choice is his alone.

"They'll hear everything," he said, "but they know it's my decision."

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