Baseball: Decatur’s Elder commits to Texas

By Richard Greene | Published Wednesday, June 21, 2017
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Eyes of Texas Are Upon Him

EYES OF TEXAS ARE UPON HIM – Decatur’s Bryce Elder committed to pitch at the University of Texas Sunday. The Decatur ace went 7-2 with a 0.603 ERA this season. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

Bryce Elder’s immediate and future plans changed in an instant Sunday evening.

Elder was making plans to visit the University of New Mexico when he received the call from his dream destination – the University of Texas.

The Decatur ace wasted no time making a commitment to join the Longhorns.

“It’s been a school I’ve always wanted to go to. It hasn’t really set in yet,” Elder said Monday attending a photo shoot for the All-Wise baseball team. “I look forward to it. Hopefully I can get in and get some innings.”

Elder had previously signed with Howard College in Big Spring during the baseball season. The Decatur ace then started to get contacted by multiple Division I teams after a strong spring.

Elder said had contacts from New Mexico and Texas Tech and was supposed to visit Oklahoma State.

“When Texas offered that was it. That’s the place I want to be,” he said.

His older brother, Erik, recently graduated from Texas.

Elder compiled a 7-2 record with a 0.603 ERA, allowing just six earned runs in 69.2 innings. He struck out 97 and walked 27.

Elder was huge in big games. Facing No. 1 Argyle twice, Elder allowed just two earned runs on 11 hits in 11 3 innings. In the 4A Region II final against Texarkana Pleasant Grove, Elder threw seven scoreless innings, allowing two hits and striking out seven.

He started the playoffs with back-to-back no-hitters against Dallas Pinkston and Melissa.

Elder earned 9-4A Pitcher of the Year and a spot in the North Texas High School Baseball Coaches Association all-star game last week. During the game, Elder displayed a strong slider to go along with a fastball around 90 mph.

“[Texas scouts] came to watch me Monday at the all-star game,” Elder said. “It was their first time to watch me. Coach [Brian] Tickell called them along with the Howard coach.”

Texas had several pitchers drafted by major league teams earlier this month. Elder said Texas coaches were trying to restock the staff. He was offered a 25 percent scholarship. NCAA Division I baseball teams have 11.7 scholarships to divide among 27 players.

“Since they got hit hard by the draft, the coach told me I have as much opportunity as anyone to get a spot,” Elder said.

Along with excelling on the mound for the Eagles for the past four years, Elder was a standout in basketball and golf.

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