The 2017 Opening Finals come to an end on Monday in Beaverton, Ore., as the top recruits in the nation finished a long weekend of competition to stake their claim as the best high school player in the country.
Before the start of the Opening, SEC Country took a look at the top-5 Texas A&M targets in attendance. Kevin Sumlin has received 13 commitments so far in the Aggies’ 2018 recruiting class. Texas A&M’s class ranks 13th in the nation, per 247Sports.
With the high school showcase coming to a close, here is a recap of the buzz surrounding those five players this weekend:
5-star WR Terrace Marshall Jr.
There was a lot of hype surrounding Terrace Marshall Jr. leading into the Opening Finals, and by all accounts the 6-foot-3, 192-pounder has lived up to the hype of being the nation’s No. 1 WR in the class of 2018. Here are several videos of what the stud prospect did in Oregon:
Terrace Marshall is a gamer. Not hiding from reps like others. pic.twitter.com/Dddr5v0lZv
— EJ Holland (@EJHolland247) July 2, 2017
— Craig Haubert (@CraigHaubert) July 3, 2017
Justin Rogers and the 👀👀👀catch by Terrace Marshall Jr
This didn’t count. Y’all be the judge pic.twitter.com/flW5VotdiV
— Sam Spiegelman (@samspiegs) July 3, 2017
The top-10 prospect also got to meet Hall of Fame wide receiver Jerry Rice, and described his time at the Opening as “the best experience of his life” on Twitter.
— Terrace Marshall Jr. (@Terracemjr) June 30, 2017
Marshall recently took a visit to LSU, in which he detailed his experience in Baton Rouge to SEC Country’s Sam Spiegelman here. However, Texas A&M remains very much in the running for the dominant receiver, and his performance this weekend did nothing but increase the hype surrounding him.
4-star WR Jalen Preston
Jalen Preston was outstanding at the Opening Finals this weekend, and some of his exploits were detailed in this article by gigemgazette.com.
The 6-foot-2, 212-pound receiver has long been considered one of the best talents in the 2018 class, and by many projections he looks to be headed to College Station next fall. In an interview with Scout.com this weekend, he had this to say about Texas A&M:
“I know a lot of people have been saying Texas A&M, because you know a lot of my teammates are going there, and all my teammates are pushing me and you know it’s a great school.”
While his decision will likely not come until National Signing Day in February, Aggies fans can get a quick sneak peak of the skills that could be on display in College Station next fall with these videos and tweets:
— Tom Loy (@TomLoy247) July 3, 2017
— Jason DiRienzo (@allpurposeyrd8g) July 3, 2017
4-Star Jalen Preston makes the one handed catch with a man on him. pic.twitter.com/XrbckRiuRt
— Scout Recruiting (@scoutrecruiting) July 2, 2017
One thing is for sure though, and that is the sought-after wide receiver will not be receiving any golf scholarships with swings like the ones he took at Top Golf this weekend.
— Ronny Torres (@RonnyTorresSS) June 29, 2017
4-star WR Al’Vonte Woodard
Al’Vonte Woodard did not make a huge impression at the Opening Finals, but the 6-foot-1, 193-pound Texas native remains a coveted recruit in 2018. He plans to make his commitment on July 15.
Woodard will choose between a top-five of Texas A&M, LSU, Ohio State, Ole Miss, and Texas. Here are a couple of highlights from his time in Oregon this past weekend:
— Jason Suchomel (@OB_JasonS) July 2, 2017
— EJ Holland (@EJHolland247) June 30, 2017
Sumlin will try to make one last push to persuade the shifty receiver to commit to Texas A&M and join the impressive 2018 class being built in College Station.
4-star S Leon O’Neal Jr.
Recently, safety Leon O’Neal, a Texas A&M commit, has made headlines for his Twitter beef with star LSU running back Derrius Guice. The exchange of words occurred after Guice posted a video of himself ahead of the upcoming season. SEC Country’s Sam Spiegelman interviewed O’Neal at the Opening about the issue. In the interview, the 6-foot-1, 190-pound safety commit had this to say about what he wants to bring at the next level:
“I’m more of the ambitious type of guy who is very confident in his game. I don’t expect anything else. I’m the kind of defensive back you’d want on your team.”
From a performance standpoint this weekend was a success for the Cypress, Texas native. He proved himself as a safety against some of the best receivers in the country. Here are some of his highlights:
Almost an INT for A&M commit Leon O’Neal Jr. pic.twitter.com/Jky81ReBMX
— EJ Holland (@EJHolland247) July 2, 2017
— Jason Howell (@Jason_Howell) July 2, 2017
By all accounts this weekend in Oregon, the Aggies have added a prospect who has the potential to be an impact player at the next level, and he surely does not lack the confidence to do so.
4-star WR Tommy Bush
In an interview with Scout.com this weekend, Tommy Bush said that he will narrow his list of schools soon. This likely does not bode well for Texas A&M as the 6-foot-5, 191-pound receiver seems to be leaning toward either Texas or an out-of-state program. Among those in the hunt for the rangy receiver are Notre Dame and Florida State.
When asked how he felt about leaving Texas, he said, “It’s definitely going to be a tough decision,” but one that he is comfortable with making.
This weekend was relatively quiet from a performance standpoint for Bush, but he remains a sought-after prospect by many of the top programs in the country.
— Scott Schrader (@Scott_Schrader) July 3, 2017