One of the common refrains one hears around college sports is “that kid is going to regret going there” when a key recruiting target elects to head somewhere else.
This is one of those weeks when UNT will have a chance to show that is the case. Take a look through Tulane’s two-deep and there are guys all over the place that UNT recruited during the since abandoned foray into Louisiana.
I count the following:
Starting cornerback Jordan Batiste
Stating defensive end Royce LaFrance
Backup guard Chris Taylor
Backup running back Lazedrick Thompson
Backup defensive tackle Tanzel Smart
And speaking of Batiste, he was named this week’s Conference USA Defensive Player of the Week after having a monster game in a win over Louisiana-Monroe. Batiste had eight tackles, a sack, forced a fumble that was returned 33 yards for a touchdown, intercepted a pass, broke up another pass and had two other quarterback hurries.
Royce LaFrance, who decommitted from UNT, is starting for Tulane at defensive end and has 12 tackles, including 2.5 behind the line of scrimmage, and a sack.
What makes the haul of talent Tulane landed in recruiting battles with UNT all the more impressive is these guys are making big impacts in their sophomore and freshman seasons.
UNT never had a problem identifying talent in Louisiana when it recruited there. The problem was getting those top guys to decide to pass on offers from Tulane, Louisiana Tech, Louisiana-Monroe and Louisiana-Lafayette and move all the way to Denton to play for a team competing in the same league as the hometown teams, whether it as the Sun Belt or now Conference USA.
Those players who passed on UNT could have a little extra motivation this week. It’s something to watch, just like this video Tammy Nunez of the New Orleans Times-Picayune shot of Batiste as Tulane’s win over ULM.