The Kansas State Wildcats build their program with transfers and JUCO prospects, and continued their success with junior college players on Tuesday with the pledge of Hutchinson Community College linebacker De'Vondre Campbell, a former Tennessee commit.
The 6'5, 220-pound linebacker had taken his official visit to Kansas State last weekend and told his position coach afterwards that he was "leaning toward" becoming a Wildcat. Days later, it became official.
A consensus three-star prospect, Campbell had committed to Tennessee last May before opening up his recruitment when several new schools entered the picture in the fall and Derek Dooley was fired. One of those schools was Texas, sparking a bizarre incident in late December when the Hutchinson CC PR staff tweeted out that Campbell had signed with the Longhorns, only to backtrack when it became apparent that he had not, indeed, decided to head to Texas to complete his eligibility.
One thing that the Wildcats were able to offer that the Longhorns could not was the guaranteed prospect of early playing time. While Bill Snyder's team lost four of six linebackers listed on the team's final depth chart, Mack Brown's squad will return every contributor at the position from 2012, and add Jordan Hicks to the mix, a player who missed most of last season with a hip injury.
Though Campbell is a rather raw prospect who may not have the functional strength to excel as a college player until he can spend some time in the Wildcat weight program, he does have the instincts and sideline-to-sideline range to quickly become an impact player.
Campbell will enroll in the summer with three years to play three seasons for the Wildcats and is the 19th commitment in the 2013 class, including the sixth prospect from a junior college. The other five prospects have already signed with Kansas St. and will participate in spring practice.
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