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February 29, 2012On Friday, there were doubts that Lancaster defensive end Daeshon Hall would even make it to Austin for the Texas junior day. By Sunday night, he had decided he did not want to leave.
The doubt about making the trip did not stem from a lack of interest, but rather a lack of time in the schedule. The 6-6, 225-pound defender has been busy averaging a double-double on the basketball court for the Tigers and after a playoff win on Friday night, he had a Saturday morning practice.
Hall was determined to make the trip though, and by noon he was on his way to Austin. Once he arrived, the Texas staff basically started the junior day experience from the beginning. He was not rushed through; they made sure he had the full junior day experience.
He was blown away.
"When I arrived at Texas, the coaches made me feel at home when I got there," Hall said. "My mom liked it and my family liked it a lot so we talked about it. She told me it was up to me if I wanted to commit or not, and I was like 'I might commit, let me think about it a little more.'"
Hall did not want to rush his choice, but he did not waste any time. When he knew, he knew and by 7:30 p.m. on Sunday night, he was ready to make the call.
"Me and my mom picked out the pros and cons of all the schools recruiting me and we thought Texas was the best one for me to achieve academic success and probably play at the next level," he said.
The standout defensive lineman chose the Longhorns over offers from Baylor, Missouri, Oklahoma St., Texas A&M, Texas Tech, TCU and Washington. By the end of his visit to Austin, the University of Texas had made a deep impression on Hall and his family. Several aspects of the visit were described as highlights, but there were a few areas that stood out more than others.
"The stadium was off the charts - 101,000," Hall said. "Then coach (Oscar) Giles, the way he runs defensive ends with the stunts and stuff in the 4-3 or 3-4, and we can stand up and play a little linebacker coverage. It stood over everybody."
It helped that Giles made it easy for him to see just how he would fit into what the Longhorns do on defense.
"He incorporated me in some stuff," Hall said. "When he was showing us defensive stunts he showed me how I fit in. He had some of my highlight clips. Like me rushing the passer."
What can Texas fans expect to see once Hall arrives on the Forty Acres?
"When I come to Texas I'm going to work hard to get a national championship, and I'm going to rush the passer and get the quarterbacks on their backs because I know the Big 12 throws a lot," Hall said. "I'm just going to give 110 percent."
The decision to commit to Texas was not made in haste, but it did happen quickly.
Texas tight ends coach Bruce Chambers has been keeping an eye on Hall since he arrived at Lancaster High in July. However, the recruitment picked up two weeks ago and then about a week ago he received the invitation to the Texas junior day.
Hall arrived at Lancaster as a basketball prospect. In fact, he's rated as a three-star power forward from Seattle (Wash.) Garfield in the Rivals.com database. Washington, Santa Clara and most of the Pac-12 were showing interest in his abilities on the basketball court.
However, once he arrived at Lancaster he quickly realized he may have a brighter future on the football field.
"I always thought I was going to be a basketball dude when I was in Seattle, but (the Lancaster coaches) told me I had a good shot if I just worked hard I would be at the next level in college," Hall said. "I kept that in my head, but when I started playing and more and more colleges started talking to me it started happening."
Hall, who played football as a freshman and sophomore in Seattle, was quick to catch the eye of college coaches. He recorded 60 tackles, 11 sacks, five forced fumbles and a countless amount of quarterback hurries and pass break-ups.
Now he is ready to do the same for the Texas Longhorns. The same Longhorns he grew up watching as a kid in Lancaster before moving to Seattle in the eighth grade.
With his decision made, a weight off his shoulders, and a smile on his face, Hall had only one thing left to say.
"Hook 'em Horns baby!!"