Two Bryan athletes traded "Gig 'Em" for "Hook 'Em" on fall signing day Wednesday.
Julia Cook signed with Texas for swimming, while Kolby Kubichek signed with the Longhorns to play baseball.
"The team atmosphere was nice," Cook said. "I love the coaches. They were so easygoing and welcoming for everything. I fell for it immediately."
Kubichek said the recruiting process was stressful, but the decision was easy. He grew up rooting for Texas baseball and Aggie football.
"It felt right in the heart," Kubichek said. "I fell in love with it right when I stepped on campus."
Cook, whose father Ed Cook, is an Aggie, said the tradition surrounding the Texas women's swimming and diving program played a big role in her decision. The Longhorns (3-0) are currently ranked No. 2 nationally and coming off a fifth-place finish at last season's NCAA meet.
"I feel like it's going to be a lot less individual and a lot more team, so I'm super excited," she said. "There's not a whole bunch of girls on my [high school] team, so to be with a whole bunch of girls with the same mindset, it's going to be really exciting."
Cook, who swims sprint freestyle and backstroke, hopes to have an early impact on relays.
"I definitely want to be on their NCAA team," she said. "I want to get up on the podium with those girls and represent UT as a whole."
Kubichek, a right-handed pitcher, says he's determined to help the Longhorns in any way possible. Texas finished 39-24 and played in the NCAA regionals last year.
"If that's coming out of the bullpen, winning a game out of the bullpen, I'll do that," Kubichek. "If it's starting a game on Friday night, I'm ready for it."
Rudder's Hunter Dobbins also will be staying in Texas to play college baseball, signing with Texas Tech on Wednesday.
Like Kubichek, he said the recruiting process was stressful, but his high school coaches as well as the Red Raider staff helped ease the pressure. Dobbins also said the distance from Bryan to Lubbock is perfect for him and his family, and Texas Tech has the academic program he wants.
"I want to go into law, and they have a good law program," he said. "They have a good baseball coach, and the whole program is really strong, and I wanted to be a part of that."
Dobbins, who plays third base and pitches, isn't sure exactly how the Red Raiders will use him this season, but he wants to make an impact right away. Texas Tech went 45-17 last year and hosted an NCAA regional.
"They've told me I'm going to be a big part of their team next year, and once some guys go to the draft next year, I'll be able to fill those spots and make a difference," Dobbins said.
Two other Bryan athletes plan to sign letters of intent Thursday. Evelyn Beesaw will sign with Texas A&M for equestrian and Rebekah Hubacek St. Mary's in San Antonio for softball.
Bryan native Jacy Smith, who is homeschooled, signed with Western Carolina for tennis on Wednesday. Her mother, Jamie Smith, said while it will be bittersweet watching Jacy leave the state, she's proud of her daughter and thankful for the community's support.
College Station's Jace Hutchins signed with Blinn to play baseball on Wednesday, while Cougar teammate Travis Hester, who was going to sign with Arkansas, postponed his commitment.
"There are some terms that need to be worked out before Hester signs," College Station baseball coach Scott Holder said in an email.
A&M Consolidated softball player Kristin Kaiser also signed with Blinn on Nov. 1 after a junior season in which she batted .378 and earned first-team all-district honors.
Around the Brazos Valley
Madisonville had four players sign Wednesday. Sam Bennett signed with A&M to play golf, and baseball players Matt Rudis, Zach Poe and Bryce Bennett signed with TCU, Sam Houston State and Cisco, respectively.
Rockdale senior Frances King signed with Midwestern State for basketball, and fellow senior Lyndy Laurrell signed with Southwestern for golf.