Gladewater’s Daylon Mack Commits to Texas A&M
After waiting longer than they probably would have liked, Texas A&M fans can rejoice.
The Aggies received a commitment Monday afternoon from Gladewater junior defensive tackle standout Daylon Mack, the most sought after recruit in East Texas' 2015 class.
Mack announced his decision to commit to the Aggies on Twitter.
He recently told ESPN.com that the Aggies, LSU, Notre Dame, and Oregon were his favorites, but A&M and LSU had long been considered the leaders with the Aggies as the favorite. Mack, who could be East Texas' most heralded recruit since Texas High's Ryan Mallett in 2007, came close to committing to A&M multiple times during the last few months.
"I had been wanting (to commit) for a while," Mack said. "My mom felt comfortable with me doing it today and we did."
The 6-foot-1, 311-pound Mack cited three key reasons for the commitment.
"Early playing time, them being my first offer, and the SEC in Texas," he said. "I'm real solid."
Mack is the second marquee East Texas defensive tackle to commit to Texas A&M since Jan. 2012, when Isaiah Golden pledged to the Aggies. Twenty-one months later, Golden, who helped Carthage reach the Class 3A Division I state semifinals a year ago, is starting as a true freshman on the Aggie defensive line.
"I feel like if he's doing it I can come down there and do the same and help out on defense," Mack said. "LSU was the defensive line school, but I feel like my mom didn't want to send me that far away from home. There's no need to go there to play in the SEC when I can do it here in Texas."
Mack holds the most offers of any East Texas junior with 16: Texas A&M, Alabama, Arkansas, Baylor, Clemson, Florida State, LSU, Miami, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Oregon, SMU, TCU, Texas, and Texas Tech.
Mack is rated as high as 10th overall nationally by ESPN.com among 2015 recruits. 247Sports.com rates Mack as the No. 2 overall recruit in Texas and the No. 4 defensive tackle in the nation in the junior class, while Scout.com rates Mack as the nation’s No. 2 defensive tackle in that class. 247Sports.com, Scout.com, and ESPN.com all consider Mack a five-star prospect, while Rivals.com rates him as a high four-star recruit.
Mack has 61 tackles, 18 for loss, two sacks, four forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, one punt block, and one safety during Gladewater's first eight games. Mack burst onto the recruiting scene as a sophomore in 2012, when he amassed 67 tackles, 16 for loss, six sacks, and six fumble recoveries on his way to ETSN.fm Defensive Newcomer of the Year honors. ETSN.fm also tabbed Mack as its 2013 Preseason Defensive MVP.
Mack's recruitment started with an Aggie offer late last fall and exploded in the following months. He proved his worthiness as an elite recruit when he ran an eye-opening 4.84-second laser-timed 40-yard dash at ETSN.fm's Football Recruiting Combine on May at APEC training facility in Tyler. He also bench-pressed 225 pounds 21 times.
Gladewater head coach Jerrod Baugh believes Mack is capable of being a quality SEC defensive tackle. Baugh has plenty of experience coaching elite recruits thanks to his tenure as an offensive coordinator at Longview, where he coached receiver Malcolm Kelly, offensive lineman Trent Williams, tailback Vondrell McGee, and others.
"He definitely has all of the tools that it takes to be a defensive lineman in that league," Baugh said. "Nowadays with most everybody being in the spread, defensive linemen have to be able to run and be athletic, and he for sure fits the bill for that. As big as he is, he's big enough to hold up inside in the running game, too."
Baugh also praised Mack's character as a reason for the sometimes overwhelming recruiting attention he has received.
"I really and truly think that's one thing that attracted everybody to him so early. It's not hard to just look at him and tell you'd be interested in him playing on your football team, but once they get to know him and look at his grades and how consistent he's been as far as that's concerned, I think that put a lot of recruiters and coaches at ease as far as being concerned to jump on someone too early," Baugh said. "It can be quite a distraction for everything to come so early, but I do think that's one thing he had going for him. All those colleges could see that he was a good kid and he's gonna have good grades and his parents have done a great job of raising him."
Mack is the third player in East Texas' 2015 class to commit. His pledge comes one day after Troup quarterback/athlete Blake Lynch committed to Baylor. Lufkin athlete KeKe Coutee committed to Texas in June.
Texas A&M already held two 2014 East Texas commitments from Gilmer linebacker Josh Walker and Lufkin receiver Jamal Jeffery. Both pledged to the Aggies last fall.
Mack's commitment is further evidence toward Texas A&M re-establishing an East Texas pipeline that hadn't been nearly as prevalent for much of the 2000's.
Golden and 2012 Carthage graduate Edward Pope, a redshirt freshman receiver, both play for the Aggies, along with sophomore Oregon transfer/Liberty-Eylau graduate Tra Carson (running back) and junior receiver Malcome Kennedy from Cayuga. Texas A&M has offered eight players in East Texas' 2014 and 2015 classes.
East Texans with Texas A&M Offers
- K.D. Cannon, WR, Mount Pleasant -- committed to Baylor
- Davion Hall, ATH, Liberty-Eylau -- committed to Baylor
- Jamal Jeffery, WR, Lufkin -- committed to Texas A&M
- Kevin Shorter, RB/ATH, Newton -- committed to Texas
- Josh Walker, LB, Gilmer -- committed to Texas A&M
- Justin Dunning, S/ATH, Whitehouse (9 offers)
- JaMycal Hasty, RB, Longview (6 offers)
- Daylon Mack, DT, Gladewater -- committed to Texas A&M
2015 East Texas Football Players With Division I FBS Offers
- Kris Boyd, ATH, Gilmer, 6-0, 175 -- offers from Oklahoma, TCU, Texas, Texas Tech (4)
- Nate Brooks, DB, Whitehouse, 6-0, 150 -- offers from Louisiana Tech, North Texas (2)
- Key'Vantanie "KeKe" Coutee, ATH, Lufkin, 5-10, 160 -- committed to Texas; additional offers from Oklahoma, Texas Tech (3)
- Justin Dunning, WR/S, Whitehouse, 6-4, 200 -- offers from Baylor, Florida State, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Vanderbilt (9)
- JaMycal Hasty, RB, Longview, 5-9, 181 -- offers from Baylor, Houston, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech (6)
- Blake Lynch, QB/ATH, Troup, 6-3, 193 -- committed to Baylor; offers from Clemson, Mississippi State, Nebraska, Oklahoma State, TCU (6)
- Daylon Mack, DT, Gladewater, 6-1, 311 -- committed to Texas A&M; offers from Alabama, Arkansas, Baylor, Clemson, Florida State, LSU, Miami, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Oregon, SMU, TCU, Texas, Texas Tech (16)
- Terry Mark, WR, Lufkin, 6-1, 180 -- offer from Houston (1)
- Erik McCoy, OL, Lufkin, 6-4, 297 -- offer from Houston (1)
- Larry Pryor, S, Sulphur Springs, 6-1, 185 -- offers from Arkansas, Baylor, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, TCU, Texas, Texas Tech (8)
- Matthew Weeks, OT, Tyler Lee, 6-5, 260 -- offer from SMU (1)