Texas TE with Six Offers

Caught up with Jersey Village tight end prospect Gabriel "Gabe" Ratcliff to see what's been happenin' on the recruiting front...

Gabriel Ratcliff is currently sporting 6 offers at this time...

"Pittsburgh, A&M, Colorado, North Carolina, and Oklahoma State have sent written offers," he said.

The pass-catcher's offer sheet could explode after the first few games of his senior season as he has a lot of college coaching staffs anxiously awaiting footage of those contests. Essentially, this kid at one time was nothing more than a potentially average possession wideout, but due to his growth spurt and added bulk, Ratcliff's projecting to be an impact tight end on the next level, which has several teams already excited about the future possibilities, hence some of his big-time offers.

So where's he at?

At this time, Ratcliff still favors the Longhorns, but said he's not stuck on them or "anything like that". He simply wants to be recruited and wooed by all teams interested in him.

"Texas continues to recruit me. They're still sending mail. But everyone, including Texas, has a chance...I'm wide-open."

At this point, Ratcliff favors two schools that have yet to offer, along with a few that have.

"Yeah, I like Texas and Texas Tech even though they haven't offered. But I also like Colorado, A&M and Oklahoma State."

His reference to Texas Tech for the fist time is an interesting comment.

"They've been sending me stuff, but started sending me a lot more. I think they're waiting on my senior year before offering me, which is fine. A lot of teams are doing that."

Of course, his interest in Mack Brown and Co. has been well documented, but what about the Red Raiders has him talking them up?

"I like their passing game," the senior-to-be said. "And I have a (former) teammate (RS-Frosh FS/SS Michael Sweats) that goes there, so I have some connections and ties to that program."

Is this lip service?

Dean: Does Mike Leach and his staff really have a chance?

Ratcliff: Sure they do.

The thinking here is everyone has a shot so long as Ratcliff remains without an offer from Texas. Considering how close the Horns are to filling the last few '04 slots, the state's No. 70-ranked prospect still seems a longshot possibility for an offer from the Orange and White so he may eventually have to find a new leader.

We got an idea of who he's favoring at this juncture. But who's showin' the most love?

If you've been reading my reports around the network and on the various premium boards, you will not be surprised by the Jersey Village prep's answer: "Arizona."

Allow me a quick tangent on the out-of-state programs scouring the Lone Star State turf in search of D-I prospects.

Folks, the oft-maligned John Mackovic has a staff that works the Texas area as hard as any out-of-state school.

Oklahoma State, of course, speaks for itself with regard to their road construction worker-ethic in the Texas area as does an Oklahoma, Colorado, Nebraska, Arkansas and Wisconsin, to name a few. But I continue to be impressed by Arizona and Oklahoma State, respectively.

This is not meant to take anything away from the LSUs, Pittsburghs, Iowas, Iowa States, Missouris, Kansas' or Purdues which also do a fine job, but Arizona and Oklahoma State are quickly becoming what I consider to be the cream, at least at this point, regarding out-of-state programs rolling their sleeves up and getting after it in the Texas region.

FYI: Ratcliff said behind Arizona, "North Carolina's recruiting me more than anybody else."

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