North Texas’ coaching staff gave Pflugerville Connally quarterback Dajon Williams an ultimatum this week: It was now or never if he wanted to commit to UNT.
The more Williams thought about it, the more his first option — committing now — made sense.
The 6-4, 190-pound standout has family in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and knew how few scholarships are available for quarterbacks when schools take only one or two per signing class.
UNT’s coaches told him that they had a scholarship available but that he would have to commit by Friday or they would move on.
Williams decided it wasn’t worth waiting for another offer to come along, especially since he thought UNT was the best fit for him anyway. He committed to UNT late Wednesday morning.
Oral commitments are nonbinding. The first day recruits in the class of 2013 can sign national letters of intent is Feb. 6. Williams is the third player to commit to UNT for 2013.
“[North Texas] is a good spot for me,” Williams said. “I have family there and it just felt like home.”
Williams attended UNT’s Junior Day event and also participated in the Mean Green’s satellite camp in Round Rock on Friday. He was recruited by cornerbacks coach Justin Gaines. Offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Mike Canales also was involved in recruiting Williams, who passed on offers from Louisiana Tech and Montana when he committed to UNT.
UNT did not sign a quarterback in its last recruiting class and came out of spring practice with two juniors atop its depth chart — starter Derek Thompson and Brent Osborn. UNT also has sophomore Andrew McNulty on the roster.
Williams said UNT’s coaches have informed him that they plan to sign two quarterbacks in the class of 2013.
“The coaches told me all about their quarterback situation,” Williams said. “They said that they really liked me and needed help. They have been recruiting me for three months but said that I had to commit by Friday.”
“They said that they really liked me and needed help. They have been recruiting me for three months but said that I had to commit by Friday.”
Williams talked to his family and decided that UNT was the best place for him to continue his career.
Connally coach Howard McMahan believes UNT landed a player who has all the tools to be successful on the college level.
“He’s an outstanding prospect who has the things that you can’t coach,” McMahan said. “He’s 6-4 and is a dual-threat quarterback. Sometimes dual-threat quarterbacks don’t look to throw first. Dajon does, but he can also beat you with his legs. He’s a good athlete.”
Williams threw for 1,977 yards and 25 touchdowns with just eight interceptions as a junior when he was named second-team All-District 16-4A. He rushed for 357 yards and four touchdowns.
Williams said UNT’s coaches told him that he might spend his first season at UNT as a redshirt but would have an opportunity to become a four-year starter.
“There are a lot of teams that are interested, from Houston to Baylor to Texas State to UTSA,” McMahan said. “A lot of those schools wanted him to come to their camps.
“Coaches are really careful about recruiting quarterbacks. The main reason they want to get them on campus is that they want to get to know them better.”
Williams got to know the coaches at UNT and became comfortable with the idea of playing for the Mean Green. It also helped UNT’s cause that McMahan is a former Middle Tennessee assistant coach who learned about the Mean Green’s program while serving on the staff of one of its Sun Belt Conference rivals.
McMahan was at MTSU long before Dan McCarney took over UNT’s program last season, but said he respects what the Mean Green’s staff has accomplished in the short time since. UNT finished 5-7 in its first season under McCarney last year, matching its win total from the previous two years combined.
McMahan was even more comfortable with the idea of Williams playing for the Mean Green because of the connection his quarterback developed with the staff.
“When you find a place where you seem to have a connection with the coaching staff, it’s a good idea to commit,” McMahan said. “They are doing a good job at North Texas. That program is about to blow up.”
BRETT VITO can be reached at 940-566-6870. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org .
The following is a list of players who have committed to become members of North Texas’ 2013 signing class: