La Marque HS
National Rank at OG: 10
Overall State Rank: 18
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An Inside Texas conversation with La Marque offensive line coach John Killough on Aundre McGaskey:
IT: What are Aundre's strengths as a football player that made him such a desirable prospect?
Killough: He's a real big body and he's real physical. We'd get him out to the edge and he'd kill a corner. Big body, big arm-span. Strong. Good squatter. When we first got him, he couldn't squat worth anything but slowly but surely we got him down and he's got great hips and plays low.
IT: He played both inside and outside for you guys...
Killough: He started out playing guard for us at first, but he's more naturally a tackle because he's so big. When we moved him out to tackle, that's when he really came on this year. He came on real big for us in the playoffs and played really well.
IT: What did Aundre do to help y'all to the state title?
Killough: He helped us establish that line. Waco had a great football team. Their defensive line was a heckuva defensive line and he just came out and established the run. We got stumped the week before by Schertz Clemens, who had an amazing defense, too, and that week they had something to prove to everybody so they came out and 'Lerch' was one of the big leaders on the offensive line, him and another guy, both seniors, and they did a great job. Really came out and established the run and that's what we were known for. We dropped back and threw the ball a couple of times, but as far as getting it done on the ground, that's what we did.
IT: What did the Texas coaches like about Aundre?
Killough: ...he's such a big body, and he's got so much potential for growth and he plays good for what he does right now, and there's so much potential.
IT: Looking at his frame he looks like a kid that could grow substantially...
Killough: Oh yeah.
IT: How big do you believe he can play at and still keep the quickness...
Killough: I could see him putting on another 35, 40 pounds on top of what he's got... I think he could play with another 40 pounds... and that's one thing I think he's got growth in is his quickness. He's good there right now but I can see more growth there as far as him becoming a better player.
IT: What's his size right now?
Killough: Between 6-3 and 6-4, at least 290.
IT: He carries it like he's not 290...
Killough: He doesn't. He can get up and move. He's big-bodied but he can get that body moving.
IT: Is that arm-span you mentioned one of the things that make him an ideal tackle?
Killough: I think it does. It gives him an advantage over a lot of people, especially today with what they're looking for. You've gotta have that frame to build on so I think it's a big part of him moving on and being successful at the next level.
IT: But he was capable for you guys of playing both inside and outside?
Killough: Oh, yes. He did a great job at guard for us, he really did. He was just more natural at tackle. We had another guy playing tackle and we wanted to try to get the line the best we could do, and we moved him over to tackle and he was a great guard but he was a heckuva tackle.
IT: What are the areas of Aundres game that he needs to improve upon to be successful in college?
Killough: Quickness, for one. Big guys can always work on their feet, especially when they're young. And overall strength. He's fundamentally strong right now. He's got a good squat, good bench, good power clean, but just excel in there and really get into the weight room and busting his tail till he gets to UT.
IT: Describe his work ethic in terms of reaching those weight room goals?
Killough: He's great. That's one of things about our kids around here, they've got a great work ethic. If you were to go back down there (to the weight room) right now, our kids come in every day after school and Aundre will be in there working out. He's not required to anymore, but he's got the future... He's got a great work ethic, great on the field, does what you tell him to do, really coachable, so it was a real privilege getting to coach him.
IT: You've referred to him as 'Lerch' several times...
Killough: Just look at him. Think about the Adam's Family. Who knows, you might even get him to say, 'You rang?'
IT: What did Aundre mean to your football program?
Killough: Two years ago when I got here, and he became a starter last year, I tell you what, from the get-go he was a positive for the offensive line, establishing the line of scrimmage, doing what he needs to do. He's gotten better between last year and this year. I mean huge strides, but at the same time he's always been great for us and been a real hard worker. From what I hear, when he came in as a freshman, a kid like that when he first came in, he's probably about the same height but a lot skinnier and really clumsy but he's really grown into himself and he's been a big part of this football team. Just showing what they did this year winning a state championship, they did an amazing thing. They came back from a 14-point deficit in the state championship game and he was a big part of that. It's going to hurt to lose him.
IT: Was Aundre a leader for you guys, and if so, how did he lead?
Killough: 'Lerch' was a guy, he was a good leader as far as on the field, his persona and getting them up and stuff... his work ethic too showed. Just watching him get in there and get to work in practice and doing everything he did. Just tremendous as far as that goes. His attitude -- he's also one of the guys that will always find a joke about something. He'll cut up about something, so he'd always keep it on the light side. We'd always get a laugh out of him.
IT: And he's OK being called 'Lerch'?
Killough: Yeah, he'll probably grow out of it eventually but that's what I've known him as. Once in a while someone will call him Aundre but if you call him 'Lerch', he'll be like, 'What's up?' He'll respond to either.
IT: Is there a defining moment for you that exemplifies Aundre's ability as a football player?
Killough: The ones I can think of most, we did a couple of times this year, we've got it on film, we were in shotgun, caught it, tailback flares out, just a little soft toss and basically all we're trying to do is get to the corner, and make the corner tackle us. Well, we'd just pull Lerch out to the corner and you'd see on film this big body exploding through some little corner. It was ugly a few times. He got him a few highlights there on those plays. Just getting that big body there, and the way he can control himself and still get on a block when he's out in space...
IT: So he moved well away from the line of scrimmage?
Killough: Yeah, he could get out there and cover up a corner. Initially, we just wanted to get him out there in the way of the corner, but then we got it on film, and he's killing the corner, the corner couldn't get out of his way, and that really impressed me.
IT: Is there anything you'd like to add about Aundre that we didn't already cover?
Killough: We're gonna miss him, but it was fun getting to coach him.
Also see: Aundre McGaskey: Enjoys Visit to Austin
Texas commit enjoys all star experience
UT Signing Day Bio: Prep All-American and two-time all-district 23-4A selection
versatile athlete who competed in five different sports while in high school
played in the 2007 East Meets West All-American game
helped La Marque to a 54-5 record and two 4A Division II State Championships during his four-year career
played left guard and right tackle on the 2006 Texas 4A Division II State Championship team (15-1) as a senior
earned second-team 4A all-state honors from the Texas Sports Writers Association
named first-team all-district 23-4A, first-team All- Greater Houston and was named to the Houston Touchdown Club's team
was a preseason member of Dave Campbell's Super Team
tallied 48 pancakes while helping La Marque score 31.1 points per game, rush for 205 yards per game and total 356 yards per game
helped La Marque to a 12-1 record and a berth in the state quarterfinals as a junior
named all-district (23-4A)
blocked for 33.5 points per game, 241 yards per game rushing and 360 total yards per game
led La Marque to a state quarterfinals berth and an 11-3 record as a sophomore
earned two letters in track and field and a letter for powerlifting
also was a member of the basketball and wrestling teams
notched personal bests of 51-0 in the shot put and 145-0 in the discus
set a personal best by lifting a combined weight of 1,100 lbs. in the bench, squat and dead lift as a powerlifter
was a member of the National Honor Roll
part of the Who's Who of American High School Students
spent time reading to children at the local library
enjoys drawing and painting
cousin, J.B. Flowers, played football at Oklahoma State until 1999
full name is Aundre Símon McGaskey
born 11/10/87 in Galveston, Texas
has lived in La Marque his entire life.
UP NEXT: MATT NADER
All photos: Will Gallagher/Inside Texas