Last week dual-threat quarterback D.J. Gillins listed Texas Tech and West Virginia as “dead even,” but it appears things have changed since then.
Gillins apparently received some divine word that will land him in a Red Raider uniform, making his commitment to Texas Tech official Tuesday night. The 6-foot-3, 185-pound Gillins attends Eagle’s View Academy in Jacksonville, Fla.
“I realized I wanted to go to Texas Tech when I was sitting in a chapel service at school,” Gillins said. “The preacher stated how everyone wants to be with you when you are up, but who’s there when you hit rock bottom? I realized Texas Tech was with me the whole time, in the good and the bad.”
Gillins is rated as the top dual-threat quarterback in the nation by 247Sports. He has missed most of his junior year with a torn anterior cruciate knee ligament.
“Coach Scott and Coach Brown didn’t stop recruiting me even when I tore my ACL,” Gillins said. “To me, that was blessing. And I thank God for everything that happened and will happen in my future.”
Gillins makes the second Red Raider commitment for the class of 2014, joining Princeton wide receiver Jakari Dillard.
Gillins said Texas Tech offensive coordinator Neal Brown and running backs coach Chad Scott were excited about the news when he narrowed his choice down to two schools.
“I talked to them one or two hours ago,” Gillins said earlier Monday. “I just know they’re my favorite. They were excited (to hear that). Last time I told them West Virginia was my number one, but when I told them Texas Tech was my number one they got really excited.”
Gillins said Texas Tech’s showing him more attention lately gave them the lead over West Virginia.
“I guess it was communication,” Gillins said. “I haven’t talked to (West Virginia much latterly), it was one of my favorite schools growing up. I’ve watched Texas Tech since I was in eight grade or a freshman. Texas Tech has been with me through my rehab.”
In 2011, Gillins completed 191 of 331 passes for 2,677 yards and 31 touchdowns. He rushed for 173 yards and five TDs.
Gillins said he is encouraged to hear how current Red Raiders have overcome injuries similar to his.
“Coach Brown always tells me about Seth Doege how he tore his left ACL his junior year and his right one his senior year, now he’s starting,” Gillins said. “When I first got my injury, I thought no college coaches would like me at all, and stop coming to me. When I tore my ACL, Texas Tech got me excited. They told me about how a running back (Eric Stephens) messed up his knee and recovered. They said I tore my ACL but I can come back even better.”
Gillins is familiar with the Red Raiders spread offense.
“I run the same exact offense in high school so I think I can make an immediate impact once I get there,” Gillins said.
“One thing I learned about Texas Tech — they treat everything like family and do everything as family,” Gillins said. “That’s what I look for in a college.”
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