April 14, 2006

Williams brings more than size

Dallas Skyline offensive tackle Terrael Williams is a big guy. But, if you just stop there, you're missing a whole lot more that the soft-spoken young man brings to the table.

Williams, standing at a large 6-foot-8, 407 pounds, is getting recruiting interest from just about everybody in the country. Schools such as Texas, Oklahoma, SMU, Florida, and others have been flooding the Williams' home with letters on a daily basis. Kansas State recently came through with the first official scholarship offer. However, his father, Terry Williams explains that from the time he was a young child to now, he's always been about more than football.

"When he was born, Terrael was four pounds six ounces and now 17 years later he's 6-foot-8, 400 plus pounds," Williams' father said. "As a Christian family, we thank god for him everyday. People have to understand this about him - when you're dealing with Terrael, it's coming with a 'yes sir' and a 'no sir.'

"The size just runs in the family."

Williams' father says that the smallest male in the family is around 5-foot-8 but that ranges all the way up to 6-foot-7 or taller. As a young child, Terrael's father had him working on not just being another big body, but being flexible as well.

The things that father taught son came from the Marine Corps. Williams' father says that he knew it was important to make him well-rounded at a young age.

"When he was little, around four or five, my wife would show him how to dance but then I would have him walk the curve around the apartment complex to maintain balance," Williams' father said. "While the other kids were out playing, he was getting a totally different experience. Then when he got older, we put him in Tae Kwan Doe."

Terrael says that the training, on top of natural ability, definitely paid off.

"The movement and more so the flexibility comes from the martial arts that I study," Williams said. "I've been doing it since I was four. It's hundreds and thousands of kicks which takes hours. But, my mother was also a cheerleader and in gymnastics. Then my father taught me the basics of stretching."

That's why college coaches know that just being big is not the whole story. His high school coach, Derick Roberson, makes sure to tell everyone that this young man is not just a large football player.

His background allows him to be swift and make a play.

"He's a big guy, but a lot of people don't realize how flexible he is for his size," Roberson said. "The kid can really move around out there on the line."

Now a junior black belt in his martial arts studies, Williams also has plenty of experience playing football. His father wants to make sure that he can get into a football conference that allows him to compete with guys as big as him - if possible.

"In high school, he's moved over to guard because he moves so well, but he's having to chase defenders to make a block," Williams' father said. "I want him to have good competition wherever he goes."

Williams is definitely wide open, but Oklahoma, Texas and Florida are three schools that the senior-to-be already has a high interest in. He'd like to stay close to home if possible, but he's keeping things even until more offers come and he can make his way to camps this summer.

The first offer from K-State definitely was something he's taking seriously.

"I can't really say much about it other than that through God and having family members in sports, it runs through the family," Williams said. "I was pretty thrilled about the offer. It's not so much the offer, but it's a school out-of-state. I never though I'd get a letter, let alone an offer from a Division I school."

The family will go over a list of camps to possibly go to this summer. Williams and his parents are looking at possible stops at Oklahoma, Florida, TCU, Texas A&M, and Texas Tech.

However, don't think that all the interest has gone to Williams' head. It's about his team at Skyline first and foremost.

"This isn't Terrael's offensive line," Williams said about his teammates in high school. "Everyone puts in their piece of the puzzle that helps us keep going. I know I can trust the guys next to me."

No matter which Division I college he ends up at, Williams says it's about education first and football second. He'll also look at how the coaches keep their players accountable and what kind of focus they have on athletic training.

Plus, he wants to prove that large players are fast too.

"Just because you're big, doesn't mean you have to be slow," he said. "That's what I want everyone to know."



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