EXCLUSIVE: Spartans 2025 DL Target Sheldon Rice Discusses Texas High School Football

Three-star edge rusher Sheldon Rice is from Fulshear, Texas. He spoke with Spartan Nation about Texas high school football.
Michigan State's head coach Jonathan Smith looks on during the Spring Showcase on Saturday, April
Michigan State's head coach Jonathan Smith looks on during the Spring Showcase on Saturday, April / Nick King/Lansing State Journal / USA

The Michigan State Spartans have had their recruiting focus on the Midwest and the West Coast, but in three-star edge rusher Sheldon Rice, Coach Jonathan Smith is looking to the football-rich state of Texas. Smith offered Rice on May 9.

Rice is the No. 127 player in the state, per 247Sports, and is the No. 54 edge rusher nationally.

For Fulshear High School -- about 45 minutes from downtown Houston, per Rice's estimate -- he had a standout junior season.

Last season, Rice registered 63 tackles, 20 tackles for loss, seven sacks and two forced fumbles.

Rice helped lead the Chargers to an unbeaten regular season. The Chargers ultimately lost to A&M Consolidated in the second round of the Texas 5A State playoffs, 31-19.

Rice told Spartan Nation the outcome should have been different.

"It was the first time we found an opponent that really wanted to bash it out [with us]," Rice said. "Last year at this time, we lost a lot of people as well, but we pulled around mid-season and I feel like we will do it again this year."

Rice craves the well-documented football atmosphere of his home state.

"The deeper and deeper you go [in the playoffs] the more and more people that show up," Rice said. "The lights start getting bigger, and the downs start getting harder ... everything starts pressing down, it's great. I wouldn't change it. The lights, the pressure, nothing."

Michigan State arrived to Rice later than most schools. He has already fielded offers from numerous Power Four schools. The recruit said Houston and Baylor, among others, are among his top teams.

Rice is a rising prospect in 247Sports' eyes. His player grade was recently upgraded following a recent evaluation.

"Rice bolsters his athletic profile with a 46-foot-9 shot put and 144-foot-9 discus, in addition to playing basketball. In other words, the arrow should point firmly upward from Rice's long-term projection ... Rice is right at home playing with a hand on the ground at the high school level, but sizable wingspan and his sudden athleticism would fit quite well as a standing edge," 247Sports wrote.

Rice spoke positively about Michigan State and said he and the school have a good relationship.

Michael France is Sports Illustrated's Michigan State recruiting beat writer, covering all things Big Ten recruiting for Spartan Nation. Be sure to follow him on Twitter/X@michaelfrancesi for exclusive Spartans recruiting coverage.

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Michael France