Three-star JUCO linebacker Devante Averette officially visited the Oklahoma State campus last weekend and not too long after became the 22nd and latest class of 2014 prospect to add his name to the list of future Cowboys. "My visit was great." Devante told Cowboys Ride For Free. "I loved how the people didn't treat me like I was just another recruit. They treated me like I was family and that's one of the things that really stood out to me."
Averette was verbally committed to West Virginia since the early summer, but decided that in the end OSU gave him every opportunity he was looking for on the next step of his career. "The thing that made me decommit was the position they (WVU) were going to have me play. I felt like that position they recruited me for didn't give me a chance to make plays." He went on to add, "I felt like my talents were going to be limited in that spot."
The Oklahoma State staff plans to use the 6-0 230 pound linebacker's talents in many ways next season. "OSU is offering to use my versatile ability to zone blitz and to play man coverage. The coach I am most active in speaking with is Coach Spencer. He wants to play me at the Will linebacker position and on third downs, I could play the Leo position because the great timing of my blitzes."
Devante doesn't just feel Mike Gundy, Spencer and the other Cowboy coaches will put him in the best position to win on the field, but in life."I feel like they are going to get me ready to be more of a responsible father and a great husband and prepare me to be great in the world." He said of the staff, "The coaches were always straight with me. They never sugar coated anything. They would tell me about what recruits were coming in and the spot they were trying to get and it was for whoever worked the hardest and I had to earn my spot."
Averette has been one of the top prospects on the entire Junior College level, not just for Iowa's Ellsworth Community College. After ending last season with nearly 100 tackles, so far this year, he has accounted for 62 tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble. He currently averages 12.4 tackles a contest, which is the third highest average among all NJCAA defensive prospects. Early this season, Devante, who is originally from Michigan, was named Iowa Community College Athletic Conference Defensive Player of the Week after registering an impressive 19 tackles, Including 8.5 for a loss in a 29-26, five overtime victory over Arkansas Baptist College.
Soon after winning the award, his ECC head coach, Josh Lattimore had the following to say on his star linebacker:
"Devante is a force of nature on the football field. We look to him to make big time plays. He is a leader on our defense and he brings a high level of energy to the field."
According to the 247Sports Composite Rankings, Averette is the 100th best JUCO prospect, fourth best inside linebacker and seventh top overall prospect in Iowa. Before ending his recruitment, he held scholarship offers from the likes of the aforementioned Mountaineers of West Virginia, North Texas and Florida Atlantic to name a few.
To get a feel for what Devante will bring the Cowboys next season, check out these highlights of him in action: