March 5, 2008

Walters looking to go where he is most comfortable

For most prospects attending Texas Tech's junior day last weekend, the goal was to learn as much about Texas Tech as possible, as a majority of the juniors on hand were seeing both Tech and the Hub City for the first time. However, for Frenship standout Mason Walters, there isn't much he hasn't already seen when it comes to Texas Tech football.

Having grown up just 15 minutes away from Tech's campus, Walters is no stranger to the Red Raider program, but says he still came away from Tech's junior day knowing more about the program than he knew going into Saturday.

"It went really well," he said of his time at Tech's junior day. "I got to talk to the coaches a lot and meet some of the current offensive linemen and some of the prospects that were there too. We had a really good time."

When he visited Texas' junior day a few weeks ago, one of the things that caught Walters' eye was the camaraderie of the Longhorn offensive linemen, a trait he says he also saw in the mammoth athletes who make up the Red Raiders' offensive line.

"Joel (Gray), Brandon (Webb) from Oklahoma, myself and some other guys got to go into a room basically by ourselves with Tech's O-linemen," he said. "We got to talk to (Stephen) Hamby, Mickey Okafor, Brandon Carter, Shawn Byrnes, and even Rylan Reed came in a little later too. It was good to get to talk to all of them and kinda ask them all the things you want to know from the players themselves."

Among the things the four-star offensive lineman noticed about the Tech linemen was the way they interacted.

"I got the impression that they hang out together all the time," said the 6-foot-6, 280-pound offensive lineman. "They were joking around and having a good time, but then at the same time, when it comes to practice and everything, they'll get in each other's faces and make sure they're getting the best out of each other. I look at that and really like that a lot."

Though Walters has made it clear that he's not leaning toward any school at this point, it's safe to say that Tech did everything they could to make sure the star offensive lineman knew just how badly they want him.

"Right when I got there, they pulled me aside and pulled me into Coach Leach's office," said the Frenship Tiger. "Man, he's a character. I love that big pirate in his office that Coach Knight gave him. I thought that was pretty funny. Anyways, we got to talk and that was great. He's funny and everything, but from what I've seen, he's all about business once he gets on the turf, so I like that about him. My dad and I also talked to Coach Moore for a while. He told me about how Rylan was doing with his ankle and told me if I decide to go to Tech that he'll be there until I graduate, which is something you can't put a price on. Of course I know nothing's for certain, but that meant a lot to me."

When it comes down to it, expect Walters to attend school wherever he feels most comfortable and also where he feels will prepare him most for the next level, which is an area where Tech could separate themselves from the pack.

"I love playing left tackle," said Walters. "It's the most challenging position, so that's what I want. I love a challenge. It's intense and in that offense it's just you and the best pass rusher from the other team and it's one on one, so that's a battle you love to have. Man, that gets me pumped just thinking about it, because I just love doing it. When I played tackle earlier in high school, I loved it every time we passed, because I knew it would give me a chance to have a battle."

And speaking of battles, the fight for Walters' services is far from over, but at this point, it appears as though Tech did nothing but improve their stock this weekend.

For more on Walters' recruitment, including his thoughts on perceptions regarding any preferences he has in his recruitment, check out Friday's edition of the Red Raider Confidential.

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