By DAVID CLAYBOURN
CADDO MILLS — Texas-El Paso is landing a football player who certainly knows how to score touchdowns.
Caddo Mills senior running back Nathan Jeffery, who signed on Wednesday with the Miners, scored 136 touchdowns in his four-year varsity career with the Foxes to finish second on the all-time state list.
“It was a great experience for me, being No. 2 all-time,” said Jeffery.
The 5-11, 190-pound Jeffery considered offers from Stephen F. Austin State and Montana State before choosing the Miners.
“It’s a nice place down there,” he said. “I like the players. Seems like a good fit for me. I’m excited about going to the next level and improving my game.”
Jeffery rushed for 7,819 yards in his career with the Foxes on 853 carries, a stellar average of 9.2 yards per carry. He ran for 2,990 yards on 370 attempts as a senior, 2,357 yards on 249 carries as a junior and 2,239 yards on 207 carries as a sophomore.
“Nathan is a touchdown scoring machine,” said Jeff Banks, UTEP’s running back coach. “He has great open field speed and reminds us a lot of Donald Buckram when he came out of high school. He’s highly productive and a very physical runner for his size. He never came off the field at any time during the games in high school. He has a great chance to play as a freshman in the return game. He is as good of a running back as we’ve recruited since we’ve been here.”
Caddo Mills coach Steve Sumrow said he’s excited for Jeffery.
“I think UTEP got an exciting player,” said Sumrow. “I think he’ll be successful there.”
Jeffery earned all-state honors this past season and was named the most valuable player in District 13-2A after leading the 10-3 Foxes to the third round of the playoffs.
Dave Campbell’s Texas Football magazine also named Jeffery to the state’s top 300 list as a recruit.
UTEP announced the signing of 26 high school recruits on Wednesday plus one junior college transfer.
“It’s the biggest class we have had in terms of size,” said UTEP coach Mike Price. “We recruited some huge kids. We need to get better. We have been a speed team for years, but we realize we have to be able to run the ball on offense and stop the run on defense. That has to start up front.”