Derrick Tucker, the newest member of the 2017 Texas A&M recruiting class, spoke with SEC Country over the weekend about his recent commitment to the Aggies.
The safety out of Manvel is the sixth member of A&M’s current ‘17 class to give his verbal commitment. He joins Aggie commit and Cypress Creek offensive tackle Grayson Reed as a four-star rated recruit, according to rankings from the 247Sports composite.
Tucker’s total tackles increased slightly from 43 to 46 from his sophomore to his junior season, but a closer look at his numbers reveals that his improvement as a player took a massive leap. His tackles for loss more than doubled from two in 2014 to five last season while he also forced a fumble.
Tucker says that the game was “real fast” as a sophomore, but now that he’s further developed his understanding for the game, “It’s starting to slow down a lot.”
That has been reflected on the field. After only one interception as a sophomore, Tucker snagged four passes from opposing quarterbacks in 2015. In addition to returning one of those picks for a touchdown, he recovered three fumbles and brought one back for a score.
He has been talking with A&M coaches Clarence McKinney and Terry Joseph daily and says they “are really excited that I made the decision. Coach [Kevin] Sumlin is too.” Then, of course, there is defensive coordinator John Chavis, who Tucker says he has “heard a lot of good things about” and “believe[s] he can make big things happen.”
Tucker discussed recent third round draft selection Brandon Williams and New Orleans Saints free agent pickup De’Vante Harris as players who combined their talents with Chavis’ coaching to find homes in the NFL. “Coach put them in a situation to make plays and they did it,” Tucker said. “That’s where I could see myself doing the same thing. They are in the league now.”
As for players he would like to get back in the fold, Tucker wants Tate Martell. “I played against him in Las Vegas,” he said. “He’s a good quarterback.” Additionally, he would like to see the return of Crosby wide receiver Mannie Netherly to the 2017 class. “We played against [Crosby] in the preseason,” Tucker said. “He’s pretty good, too.”