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SEC Recruiting Notebook: Texas A&M Lands Legacy Cunningham

sec-recruiting-notebook-gfxTexas A&M received good news Thursday when defensive end Qualen Cunningham from Hamilton High School in Chandler, Ariz., committed to the Aggies.

Cunningham, who’s ranked the nation’s No. 22 defensive end by ESPN RecruitingNation, chose Texas A&M over offers from such schools as Oklahoma, Oregon, Southern California, UCLA and Washington.

Cunningham will follow in the footsteps of his father, Rick Cunningham, who played on the offensive line at Texas A&M from 1988-89. Qualen Cunningham told ESPN he was glad to go ahead and make a decision.

“I’ve been thinking about it a lot, and I had my list narrowed down to schools I felt comfortable with,” Cunningham said. “It just seemed like the best situation for me, individually, being able to play in the SEC. It’s a great school, and I’m really excited for it.”

Cunningham is the second 2014 defensive line prospect to commit to Texas A&M in the last week. Defensive end Myles Garrett committed to the Aggies last week. Texas A&M has a total of four defensive linemen committed to the 2014 class.

“I know the players that are going to be on the field are going to be the best players,” Cunningham said. “I just have to step up and compete, and at the end of the day, that’s all it’s about.”

Texas A&M’s 2014 class is quickly turning into one of the best in the nation. The Aggies’ class is ranked No. 7 in the country and fourth in the SEC by Rivals. Texas A&M’s 16 commitments is the fewest total of any school ranked in the top 10.

The news of Cunningham’s commitment was met with excitement by Texas A&M quarterback commit Kyle Allen. The fellow Arizona native has pushed publicly for Cunningham to commit to the Aggies. Allen tweeted:

“Q!!!! My boy you finally came to your senses ahah! Congrats man so happy for let’s ball out! #gigem”

Texas A&M added to its 2015 class earlier this week when defensive tackle Daylon Mack from Gladewater (Texas) High School committed to the Aggies.

Mack, whose offer list also includes LSU, Florida State, Miami, Oregon and Texas, is expected to be one of the highest-rated prospects in the 2015 class. He’s confident he will help Texas A&M as soon as he arrives in College Station.

“I really just feel like I can come in and help from day one,” Mack told Rivals. “I wouldn’t mind fighting for a starting job. I think I would win, too.”

It’s another in-state recruiting win for Texas A&M. All four of the Aggies’ 2015 commitments are from in-state prospects. Allen and Cunningham are the only two commitments in the 2014 class who live outside the state of Texas.


South Carolina lands a quarterback

Quarterback Michael Scarnecchia from Fleming High School in Orange Park, Fla., committed to South Carolina this week.

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SEC Recruiting Headlines 4/3/2013

recruiting-headlines-gfx1. Ranking the top defensive tackles in the state of Texas.  No. 1 on the list - DeShawn Washington - is a Texas A&M commitment. The top defensive end in the state of Texas on this list - Myles Garrett - has the Aggies at the top of his list.

2. Defensive end Qualen Cunningham’s father, Rick, played at Texas A&M.  His son may follow suit – he reportedly is paying an unofficial visit this weekend.

3. St. Louis running back Markel Smith is backing off his verbal commitment to Missouri.  Smith and lineman Andy Bauer were the first two 2014 commitments for Missouri.  Bauer has since committed to Ole Miss.

4. Fort Lauderdale defensive tackle Anthony Moten has verbally committed to play for Florida. He’s the eighth commitment of the 2014 class for the Gators.

5. Some updates on several Arkansas signees and prospects.

SEC Basketball

6. Kentucky’s much-heralded class coming to Lexington this fall will no doubt feel the love at Rupp Arena but will going on the road bother them?  Not at all if you believe what they say.  ”As long as it’s loud, I’m totally fine with it,” Marcus Lee told the Lexington Herald-Leader. Added Andrew Harrison, part of the twin duo along with brotherAaron - ”In Houston, they hate on us no matter who we play or where we are.”

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