The first day of the early signing period was one to remember for SMU. Twelve high school and junior college standouts inked their national letters of intent, and the Mustangs grabbed some players capable of finding starter's minutes as true freshmen next season.

Of the 12 signees, eight are from the state of Texas. And of those eight, three represent the Dallas-Fort Worth area in Blinn College wide receiver Danny Gray, a Dallas product, Tyler Junior College defensive end DeVere Levelston, a DeSoto product, and Dallas Jesuit High School offensive lineman Branson Hickman.

"The big thing for us is to get successful enough where the kids who could go anywhere they want to go say, 'Why not SMU?'" SMU coach Sonny Dykes said. "Instead of 'Why SMU,' 'Why not SMU?' Come take a look at our program and see what we have to offer."

Dykes added: "There's a lot of things we have to sell, and we're hoping the guys are starting to get the message."