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Friday, January 17, 2014
Early Offer: Dead period ends

By Jeremy Crabtree

The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today’s offerings: The extended dead period kept coaches from making face-to-face contact with recruits for more than a month, but Thursday they were on the road again; new Texas coach Charlie Strong used the end of the dead period to visit with Edwin Freeman and he was rewarded with a commitment; and an LSU commit is looking hard at Oklahoma and Arizona State.

Lengthy dead period ends
The NCAA extended the dead period until Jan. 16 this year, a move that left coaches chomping at the bit to get back on the road after more than a month away from visiting prospects face-to-face. And did they get after it. Recruits posted tweet after tweet Thursday with pictures of coaches and news of scholarship offers, commitments and decommitments happening from coast-to-coast. “There’s going to be an avalanche of movement in the days after the dead period,” one SEC coach said. “With all the coaching changes that happened and the NCAA taking away three official visit weekends with the dead period, things are going to be really crazy. Even crazier than normal. There’s just not a lot of time left, so the pressure is going to ramp up on the coaches and then on the recruits.”

A Strong statement
Charlie Strong didn’t waste any time generating excitement from Longhorns fans after the end of the dead period. The new Texas coach visited with ESPN 300 linebacker Edwin Freeman (Arlington, Texas/Bowie) and was able to convince him to commit to the Longhorns. After Mack Brown resigned, Freeman said he was leaning slightly toward rival Texas A&M, so the commitment was a solid recruiting victory for Strong and the Longhorns. Freeman is the No. 16 player in the Lone Star State and an Under Armour All-American. More importantly, it shows Strong has closing ability with elite prospects.

All eyes on Clark
Oklahoma City (Okla.) Douglass defensive lineman Deondre Clark has been a longtime commitment to LSU, but he has made no bones about looking around before finally settling in on a decision. Clark is slated to visit Oklahoma this weekend, LSU on Jan. 24 and then Arizona State on Jan. 31. Most people assume OU is LSU’s biggest threat, but don’t sleep on the Sun Devils. Clark is being recruited to ASU by former longtime Sooners assistant Jackie Shipp. Clark has known Shipp since he was a sophomore when he was recruiting him for OU.