4-star prep DE Steven Parker commits to KU football

Kansas University football recruiting

National Signing Day isn’t until Wednesday, but Monday very well could go down as the most important day for the Kansas football program’s 2019 recruiting class.

That’s when Steven Parker, a four-star defensive end from Dallas, announced his decision to join the Jayhawks.

In picking KU over Texas Tech and Nebraska, Parker became the top-rated prospect in new head coach Les Miles’ recruiting class.

“Today might have been the toughest day of my life,” Parker wrote in a note that accompanied his Twitter post unveiling his choice.

The tweet also included a photo, taken during his visit to Lawrence this past weekend, of Parker decked out in a blue KU football uniform inside the team’s locker room.

Parker thanked former Red Raiders coach Kliff Kingsbury, new Tech coach Matt Wells, Nebraska coach Scott Frost and KU’s Miles for recruiting him.

“Each of you saw something in me that has brought all of us to this point,” Parker wrote. “I especially want to thank all the coaches and staff of South Oak Cliff (high school) that believed in me the whole time. I will forever be grateful for everything that you poured into me.”

Emmett Jones, now the receivers coach at KU, played a major part in Parker’s recruitment, as he had a longstanding relationship with the defensive lineman dating back to Jones’ time on Kingsbury’s staff. Parker decommitted from the Red Raiders in early December, after Tech fired Kingsbury.

Jones is known for his recruiting ties throughout the Dallas metroplex, and he was the head coach at South Oak Cliff High, from 2012-14.

Rivals ranks Parker, a senior at South Oak Cliff, as the No. 20 weakside defensive end in the country. He’s rated as the 40th-best prospect overall in the state of Texas.

Current South Oak Cliff head coach Jason Todd told Jon Kirby of Jayhawk Slant that the “bond” Parker has with Jones helped KU land the D-end.

“He felt like that he would have somebody to be there to guide him the same way that we guided him in high school,” Todd said of Parker’s connection with Jones.

KU signed six three-star prospects — two from the high school ranks — during December’s early signing period. Parker, who can sign his letter of intent on Wednesday, became the most heralded player in KU’s class upon committing to Miles’ Jayhawks.

Because 11 players signed with Kansas in December, only a few spots remain in the rebuilding program’s 2019 recruiting class. Miles stated back in November, when he was hired to replace David Beaty, that he expected the Jayhawks would have about 15 players in his first signing class — 10 shy of the NCAA maximum of 25.

Over the past few years, Beaty and his staff utilized blueshirts — athletes who don’t sign letters of intent but join the program on scholarship and count toward the following year’s recruiting class — which played a significant role in KU’s current recruiting situation.

by Steven Parker

KU football’s 2019 early signees from December

(ratings from Rivals; √ = signed)

√ 3-star St. Thomas Aquinas S Jayden Russell (6-3, 190)

√ 3-star McEachern H.S. (Ga.) CB Valerian Agbaw (5-10, 170)

√ 3-star Mesa C.C. (Ariz.) QB Thomas MacVittie (6-5, 225)

√ 3-star Iowa Central C.C. WR Ezra Naylor (6-4, 210)

√ 3-star Golden West Coll. (Calif) CB Justin Ford (6-1, 180)

√ 3-star Iowa Western C.C. DE Malcolm Lee (6-5, 270)

√ 2-star Coahoma C.C. (Miss.) DL Caleb Sampson (6-4, 285)

√ 2-star Iowa Central C.C. WR Andrew Parchment (6-2, 185)

√ 2-star Meridian H.S. (Miss.) DL Da’Jon Terry (6-4, 350)

√ 2-star Andale High TE Mason Fairchild (6-5, 250)

√ 2-star Rochdale H.S. (Texas) QB Torry Locklin (6-2, 195)

Comments

Brian Hosfelt

BIg time get..welcome to the Hawks

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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David Robinett

Nice!!!

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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David Kemp

Les and staff making all the right moves.

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Layne Pierce

This kid is full of potential. What we can expect with Coach Miles, is the step from potential to performance. This staff can get young men there.

RCJH

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Lance Meier

Keep Getting the Kids that seem to B Quality people and this program will once again take off!!!

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Dirk Medema

This is an A quality recruit. It will take more than 1 to turn the program around, or even 1 per year, but it all starts there. Even the previous program was able to develop some 3*'s, so there's hope that all will come together for W's with this staff.

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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John Myers

Based on the all over the place capitalization, I think maybe he meant "that seem to be quality people".

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Andy Tweedy

Up here in Omaha, it's become quite clear this was a recruiting priority for Scott Frost, and he'll still be wearing blue next year. LOVE IT!!!

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Dirk Medema

I was reading some BigRed blogs saying he was the top of the desire list of potential recruits remaining.

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Len Shaffer

That makes it all the sweeter ...

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Brent Shipley

Being in Omaha and pointing out that KU is pulling guys that NU wants bad is some of the best things that have happened since the Mangino era

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Kevin Robert Fest

Had alot of quality offers. Hopefully this is just the beginning of talent Coach Jones can pull from Dallas area. Dallas, LA, KC areas, Kansas, should be enough talent from those places to quickly compete.

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Dirk Medema

There's another article about Michigan dropping their offer to Pesek-Hickson. KSU is hoping he'll go there, but Miles is in the mix as well. It would seem that getting Parker to commit might provide some momentum to bring Pesek-Hickson onboard as well. Would be sweet to take one away from KSU & NU.

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Karen Mansfield-Stewart

I saw some chatter about KU didn't know if they would have enough scholarships to offer Amauri Pesek-Hickson. That would lead me to think KU is counting on an additional 3 guys signing on Wednesday... If one doesn't work out, maybe this kid picks up that offer.

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Buck Bukaty

Maybe I'm just Jayhawk dreamin', but what would be really cool would be if not only Mr. Pesek-Hickson signed, but also the Senior transfer DE Harbaugh was hoping for!

Welcome aboard, Mr. Parker !! Once a Jayhawk, always a Jayhawk !!!

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Dane Pratt

Oh this is sweet!

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Len Shaffer

Great news!!!

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Chris DeWeese

YES YES YES!!!!

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Brian Hosfelt

if we run out of scholarships there should be no reason not to add a couple blue shirts if the kids are top quality players

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Kevin Robert Fest

Is the hype over Pesek-Hickson just talk or is there a link to show KU is actually in the mix for him.? l'll lm seeing is a visit to KSt.

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Ray Winger

USAToday/sports has him having a visit to KU this last weekend.

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Kevin Robert Fest

Thank you for the update l found some other articles as well. Why cant KU offer him? He's likes the facilities coaches campus etc. Currently KU has 12 commits signed. What's the holdup?

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Joe Black

“Today might have been the toughest day of my life,”
Shouldn't this have been one of the happiest days of his life??
Maybe he really isn't that sold on KU but just thinks its better than the other two options he had.

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Joe Black

Sorry, just trying to add a cloud to the silver lining.

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Glen Miller

I would assume that it had more to do with the fact that he had to let some people down he had built a relationship with........ that makes more sense to me. There are always losers when a player commits as well and when someone has been building that trust with you for 3 or 4 years, it's tough. I can speak from experience on this one. Not easy to just pick a school.

2 months, 2 weeks ago

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