TEXAS CITY – Once D’Vonta Hinton donned the Texas Tech uniform for the first time, the all-state linebacker knew that Lubbock would be his home beginning next fall.

Hinton, the two-time All-County Defensive Player of the Year, committed to the Red Raiders on Sunday, choosing them over offers from Maryland, Texas State, Louisiana Tech and University of Texas-San Antonio.

“It was about the atmosphere and the fans,” Hinton said. “They’re very proud of their school, and you can feel how excited they are about their team. It reminded me a lot of how the Texas City fans are on Friday nights.”

Hinton made the trip to Lubbock with his father during the weekend and was on the sidelines for Tech’s annual Red and Black scrimmage.

The 5-foot, 10-inch, 200-pound hitting machine was also sold on what Red Raiders head coach Kliff Kingsbury told him in regards to what he liked about Hinton’s potential.

“He told me that I was one of the best inside linebackers he’d ever seen on film,” Hinton said. “He also told me that I had a very good chance to play as a freshman, but the thing I liked most was how he compared me to (former Red Raiders) Wes Welker and Zach Thomas in that both of them were undersized and were dismissed, but both of them were stars in the NFL.”

One of the other factors that pleased Hinton was how youthful the coaching staff was and how in tune they were with the players, including the fact that five of the coaches on Kingsbury’s staff were former Texas Tech players.

Hinton said making the choice this early in his junior year was important to him because he wanted to be focused on helping Texas City improve from its 12-1 mark last season.

“I know that I will asked to be a leader, and I’m in the process of being ready to take upon that responsibility,” he said. “Knowing that, I can now step up and help get my teammates ready to make a run at the state championship.”

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