March 12, 2008

Texas commit is burnt orange to the bone

Every time Texas head coach Mack Brown talks about the types of prospects that he prefers to recruit, he mentions wanting to find kids that have always dreamed of donning the burnt orange.

In Brown's mind, a player that is passionate about his school is going to be equally passionate when representing it on the gridiron.

If there was ever a recruit that could be the poster boy of Brown's commitment to finding players that bleed orange, it's Elysian Fields defensive lineman Kyle Kriegel. The 6-5, 235-pound Kriegel committed to the Longhorns back in late February when the program hosted its second junior day event.

According to Kriegel, the exact moment that Brown extended the offer produced a number of raw emotions.

"We just sat in (Mack Brown's) office for a long time and we just talked," Kriegel said. "While we were talking he told me that they were going to offer me a scholarship. As soon as he offered, I thought about how this is what I've wanted ever since I was a little kid. This is what I have worked for and I was really excited."

As you can imagine, it didn't talk long for Kriegel to give Brown a commitment and in the blink of an eye the recruiting process had ended.

"The amount of mail I get hasn't really changed," Kriegel said. "It's pretty much the same stuff, but I don't even bother to open any of the mail. Recruiting is over for me."

As far as his long-term future with the Longhorns, Kriegel's versatility is an absolute strength and with so much room for growth on his frame, there's a line of thought that he might eventually develop into an interior lineman.

When asked if the staff had talked with him about the specifics of where they intend to play him and whether there was any discussion of him potentially cross-training across the line, Kriegel said, "Yes, we did talk about (specifics), but I'd rather not talk about that at this time."

With Kriegel's commitment the Longhorns currently have pledges from two defensive linemen in the 2009 class and the staff will likely look at add at least three more, with two likely to be defensive tackles.

As a junior in 2007, Kriegel emerged as one of the top prospects in East Texas after recording 115 tackles and 11 sacks. He's currently ranked No.72 in the recent Lone Star Recruiting Top 100 list.

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