December 7, 2011

Process Heating up for Dunning

Leander high school offensive tackle Jacob Dunning is still new to organized football. The 6-6 275lb north Austin product didn't start playing football until he was a high school junior which has condensed the recruiting process for him.

College coaches are now starting to watch tape from the last two years and with two months to signing day Dunning is caught up in a whirlwind of activity.

Only a few weeks ago he picked up an offer from Iowa State to go along with his other scholarship offers from Texas State, North Texas, and Wyoming. Dunning had an in-home visit with Texas State assistant coach Jason Washington Tuesday and will travel to Iowa State for an official visit this weekend.

His visit this weekend will be his first official visit, but Dunning has already made unofficial visits to Texas State and the Bobcats made a favorable impression on him.

"Texas State stands out to me," said Dunning. "That's probably one of my top ones. It's a young program and I kind of want to get into it and be an asset to the team. My mom likes that it's right down the road and I have friends that go there."

"I know people that go to Texas State. I feel like going there the transition would be easy because I have people I know. Not just the football team, but friends," said Dunning.

The friends that he knows that are current and former students have given Dunning a lot of advice about Texas State.

"They said they like it a lot," said Dunning. "They like the environment. It's definitely harder than high school, but you get used to things and find a routine."

Dunning's teammate Martel Summers has also listed Texas State among his final three favorites. The two have talked about the possibility of playing together in college, and he's also been in contact with another north Austin player who already has a reputation for recruiting on behalf of the Bobcats.

"There's only like a handful of guys going to play college football, so he's definitely someone that I've talked to about possibly playing together at [Texas] State," said Dunning. "I know Felix Romero too. That'd be pretty cool to go play with him."

Among the factors he listed that he'll be looking for in a program while on his official visits, Dunning said he's interested in proximity to home, having a camaraderie with teammates and coaches, and a school with a good business program.

"I know a lot of official visits have to do with meeting players and meeting coaches," said Dunning. "I want to have that early camaraderie. Based on first impressions, are these guys I can be around and play with for four years. I also think I want to major in business, so I'd like to go to a school that has something to offer there."

Four of the five offensive line starters from week one last year were seniors, and by 2013 there won't be a player left from last season's opening day starting unit. With the Bobcats needing to re-tool the offensive line over the next few years young players like Dunning will have the opportunity for early playing time and the Texas State coaches have been selling him on that.

"Coach Washington basically told me that they want me to come in and redshirt and be an early starter for them," said Dunning. "He told me it is a young program, but they're going D-1 and they're looking for athletes to come in and be an asset for them. Texas State is progressing. He said that and I agree."

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