January 6, 2009

Haynes' athleticism no longer a secret

Since before entering his sophomore year of high school, Orange (Texas) West-Orange Stark athlete James Haynes has been attending Texas Tech summer camps. It was last summer in Lubbock that the 2010 prospect jumped a 42-inch vertical.

His consistent performances in front of the Red Raider coaching staff were enough for Haynes to get his first Division-I offer a couple of months ago.

After his performance at the U.S. Army National Combine on Friday, it's safe to say that Tech's secret is now out.

The West-Orange Stark junior measured in at 6-foot, 181-pounds. During the morning testing period, Haynes ran one of the best times of the day with an unofficial 4.53, 40-yard dash.

"This is all about being around the best players in the nation," Haynes said. "I knew if I showed my stuff and then the top colleges in the country would be looking at me."

That's exactly what Haynes has wanted. After receiving the Tech offer, he continues to talk about LSU and Texas. After Friday's performance, he may have their attention among other schools.

"I think I can perform. I believe in myself. I'm confident in what I can do and believe that if I'm at that level, I can do what I need to do," Haynes said.

Coming from a high school program that has produced current University of Texas players Earl Thomas and Deon Beasley, Haynes listened to the advice of his coaching staff back home.

"They told me just to stay calm because we've had two All-Americans come out here," he said. "One of them made it the game and one of them didn't. I just knew that I had to perform my best because it's not guaranteed that I'm going to make it."

It's not guaranteed that either the Longhorns or Tigers would indeed pull the trigger on Haynes after his recent performance, but it sure didn't hurt.

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