March 14, 2011

Tech hopes to return to Pa.

Texas Tech was able to land two commitments from the Keystone State in their 2011 class and it looks like they'll be going back for more in 2012. McKeesport (Pa.) linebacker Tyrone Neal recently picked up an offer from the Red Raiders and the potential for a pipeline of sorts is definitely in sight.

"He's being recruited by Coach Robert Prunty as well," according to McKeesport head coach Jim Ward. "We've obviously established a great relationship with him (Prunty) so I won't hesitate to endorse Texas Tech for any of my guys. We expect to have a long relationship with their staff."

To this point Neal has some-what flown under the radar, but as his highlight film begins to travel across the country, his recruitment has begun to gain steam.

"Right now he's getting some attention from Auburn, USC, NC State, Rutgers, Syracuse, West Virginia, and Clemson in addition to Tech," Ward said. "I think he's a guy who is some-what under the radar right now, but as his tape gets out there will be even more attention coming his way. Who knows what will happen if he has an even better senior season. I think he'll be a target for a lot of schools when it's all said and done."

Coach Ward described what type of player a program will get in Neal.

"He's got a great mind and he's used that to be a great leader. He really stepped up at some different points for us as a junior and asserted himself as one of the leaders on the field," Ward said. "He's a really passionate guy and he plays with a lot of emotion. He had a great year last year and as his tape has gotten out, the attention has really picked up with a lot of programs jumping on him quickly."

"He's a very physical linebacker who has a lot of the intangibles coaches look for. He's got pretty good speed and he's not afraid to hit somebody. Being able to run and being a physical player is kind of where you start if you want to be a great defender and he's definitely got that down already."

The 6-foot-1, 225-pounder appears to not have an inclination to remain in-state, which will obviously be good news for the hopes of Texas Tech.

"He's another kid that doesn't talk too much about staying home and I think he's very open to the possibility of playing away from home. We talked about Tech not too long ago and he was more than willing to check them out," Ward said. "Coach Prunty has left a lasting impression with our guys, and so I think all of our athletes who aren't set on staying close to home will be interested in Texas Tech."

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