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JUCO tackle high on UNT following visit

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Brett Vito, Staff Writer

North Texas only recently emerged as an option for Scottsdale (Arizona) Community College offensive lineman Thomas Preston III.

Now Preston will have to quickly make a decision on whether or not he will continue his career with the Mean Green.

The 6-foot-5, 300-pound sophomore visited UNT over the weekend.

"It was very well," Preston said. "I had a great time meeting the coaches, seeing the facilities and meeting some of the players."

Preston was a first-team all-region and first-team all-conference selection last season. He has offers from New Mexico, UTEP, Kent State, Akron and Ohio in addition to a host of teams that compete on the Football Championship Subdivision level.

UNT offensive line coach Chuck Langston is recruiting Preston. UNT entered the picture for Preston about a week and a half ago.

UNT is recruiting Preston to play either right tackle or right guard. The Mean Green lost senior starters Riley Mayfield and T.J. Henson to graduation after they formed the right side of UNT's line last season.

Preston said he is looking for a school that offers quality academics as well as coaches and players who are dedicated to winning. Finding a school that is close to home is also a priority for Preston.

The Arizona native has several options to sort through in the next few days. If Preston elects to sign with UNT, he will be a midterm transfer and will have to quickly get back to campus for the start of classes. 

A few other schools are recruiting Preston as a midterm transfer. Others are asking Preston to transfer after the spring semester while others don't have a scholarship immediately available. Those schools are asking Preston to wait and see if they  have a scholarship open later in the year.

Preston said he will make a decision in the next couple of days.

"I need to talk to my family and look at it in terms of the big picture," Preston said.

UNT is in the hunt for a few junior college offensive linemen, including Keith Williams, a tackle from Independence Community College in Kansas. Williams visited Louisiana Tech this weekend.

UNT entered the weekend with a recruiting class ranked sixth in C-USA by 247Sports.