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July 8, 2013As Texas A&M's fall camp draws closer, AggieYell.com will introduce each of the players who are arriving in College Station this summer. Next up: cornerback Noel Ellis.
High school: New Orleans Edna Karr
Height/Weight: 5'10", 175 lbs.
2012 statistics: 8 INTs, 4 returned for touchdowns; 25 tackles; 6 PBUs; 2 FR; 4 punt returns for a TD; 1 kickoff returned for a TD; 11 catches for 103 yards and 2 TDs
Awards/Recognitions: Rivals 250 member; New Orleans Times-Picayune First Team All-New Orleans; 4A First Team All-State (Louisiana); Under Armour All-American; 9-4A First Team All-District; Invited to the 2012 Gridiron Kings competition at Walt Disney World
Why the Aggies wanted him: When the Aggies started recruiting for their 2013 class, they really had no idea what they'd be getting out of new corners Devante Harris and Tramain Jacobs in 2012, and they didn't know exactly what to expect from veterans Deshazor Everett and Floyd Raven, either. They did know, however, that Dustin Harris would be gone after 2012, making cornerback recruiting a key element of the 2013 class.
The Aggies wanted a top-flight pass defender who could lock up a receiver on his own, as defensive coordinator Mark Snyder likes to blitz. Ellis, with his amazing 20 interceptions in three years at Louisiana state champion Edna Karr, fits the bill. Even though he's not the biggest defensive back, he's not afraid to be physical and come up and make plays against the run. Against the pass, he's capable of manning up against receivers at the line of scrimmage or closing and getting to the football if he's playing off.
Going into to 2013, the Aggies now know they have an All-SEC caliber corner in Everett and a solid pass defender in Harris, but they'll need more depth (especially with Raven now likely starting at safety). When Ellis committed on the morning of June 14, 2012, A&M picked up not only a guy with more than 20 offers, but a player capable of contributing during his freshman season.
Likelihood of playing in 2013 (5 being probable starter, 1 being near-certain redshirt): 4. Everett and Harris will start, and Toney Hurd will be the nickel back. But after that, the Aggies will need additional corners against teams running 4-receiver sets. Ellis will likely be the first guy among the freshmen to get a chance to make a contribution.