It’s not often that the Longhorns recruit outside of Texas’ borders. If they do, though, they’ll almost exclusively stay on the mainland.
But on Tuesday, Texas made contact with a four-star defensive lineman from the Aloha State. No, really.
Honalulu Monalua’s Scott Pagano, the No. 22 defensive tackle in 2013, spoke with Texas defensive coordinator Manny Diaz and defensive ends coach Oscar Giles for about 10 minutes over the phone.
“They told me that they didn’t really recruit Hawaii but that if there is a good player there they will go get him,” Pagano said. “It’s a good sign for me. Coach Diaz said they would love for me to come visit this summer at a camp so I can see how it feels to me and that maybe I’ll get an offer from Coach [Mack] Brown.”
Pagano was shocked to hear from the Longhorns. But it’s not like he doesn’t have the talent. His offer list includes Boise State, Cal, Clemson, Florida State, Georgia, LSU, Miami, Michigan, Michigan State, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas A&M, UCLA and USC amongst others.
“It’s a good feeling to get a call from a school like Texas and to have that chance at playing at one of the top schools in the nation,” said Pagano, the No. 2 player in the state. “They are a great program with great academics. Their defense and defensive line are coached by great coaches. They play in a power conference and I want to be in a BCS conference.”
Pagano said he would consider coming to Austin for a camp this summer. However, don’t expect a commitment anytime soon.
“I’m not going to have a decision for a long time,” he said. “I want to take my time so I can give it a good thought.”
Pagano was in Texas not too long ago for the Dallas Nike Football Training Camp where he was one of the top defensive linemen.
While in Valley Ranch he had the chance to speak with Texas’ lone defensive tackles commitment A’Shawn Robinson, Torrodney Prevot and Nebraska commitment Christian LaCouture about football in the Lone Star State.
“They are great, great players and great guys one and off the field,” he said. “They all say that Texas is the best state to play football in and that the Big 12 is a great conference. The Big 12, SEC and ACC are the conferences that I want to play in.”
Right now, the SEC has the inside track on Pagano as LSU is his top school. The relationship he has with Les Miles and the appeal of early playing time has the Tigers out front.
“But other schools that I like right now are Florida State, Florida, Clemson, Alabama, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss and now Texas,” he said. “I didn’t think Texas would show interest in me and possibly offer. It’s shocking.”