By Travis M. Smith | KBEC Sports
Red Oak raised, Dallas-Fort Worth groomed and soon to burst onto the NFL scene in Baltimore: James Proche officially became a Raven on Saturday.
The Ravens selected Proche in the sixth round (201st overall) of the 2020 NFL Draft.
Go inside the @jamesproche3 household to join in the celebration of THE call from the @Ravens & immediate reactions with @CoachDykesSMU and @BGShaneBuechele ☎️🔵#SMU2NFL #PonyUpDallas I #NFLdraft2020 pic.twitter.com/vT83spsfvA
— SMU FootbaII (@SMU_Football) April 25, 2020
Proche (6-foot, 193lbs) attended Red Oak ISD schools through his freshman year of high school. He then transferred to the since-defunct Prime Prep Academy, an athletics-first private high school backed by Deion Sanders.
Prime Prep shuttered its doors ahead of Proche’s junior season, which led the standout wide receiver to transfer to DeSoto High School. He quickly became a four-star ESPN recruit, ranking 38th among all wide receivers in the country in 2014, by catching 18 passes for 335 yards and a touchdown in seven games.
Following a redshirt 2015 season at SMU, Proche went on to set career records for receiving touchdowns (39), career receptions (301), career receiving yards (3,949), career all-purpose yards (4,996), season receiving touchdowns (15) and consecutive games with a reception touchdown (12).
Proche’s career receiving yardage total bested the 3,791 yards accumulated by Emmanuel Sanders. Aldrick Robinson, a 2007 Waxahachie graduate, is third on that all-time list with 3,314 yards.
Robinson, a former seven-year NFL wideout, is also fourth all-time with 30 touchdown receptions, trailing Proche, Sanders (34) and Courtland Sutton (31).
ProFootballFocus labels Proche as a “savvy route-runner who gets open more than his athleticism would suggest. Ridiculous ball skills. Attacks the football with reckless abandon. Some YAC wiggle room too. Impressive value for Baltimore.”
Baltimore lands James Proche: The most targeted WR in college football – and for good reasonpic.twitter.com/lZiuoNqoVi
— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) April 25, 2020
NFL Hall of Fame running back and SMU alumnus Eric Dickerson echoed those same thoughts on Twitter.
“Great pick by the Ravens! God blessed James Proche with the perfect NFL fit,” Dickerson stated. “Really enjoyed watching James at SMU…big fan. He’s the real deal and will be an NFL star.”
Proche’s younger brother, Jacob Proche, is a 2019 Red Oak graduate and continued his football career at Coffeyville Community College in Coffeyville, Kansas. He recorded 36 total tackles (17 solos) and one interception during his 10-game freshman season.
Travis M. Smith, @Travis5mith