STAFF WRITER JENNIFER FIERRO
BURNET — When Burnet High School senior receiver Sterling Galban committed to Texas Tech University to play football, he summed up the reason in four words.
“It’s a perfect fit.”
On Dec. 20, the first day of the new early signing period for high school football players across the country, Galban made his commitment official by signing his National Letter of Intent.
“It feels like home,” he said of his reason why becoming a Red Raider is best for him, adding he has great relationships with the coaches.
Galban will have the chance to earn a starting job as a slot receiver, the same position that Tech junior Keke Coutee has occupied during this season. Coutee has 1,242 receiving yards and nine touchdowns in 2017. Coutee hasn’t announced whether he’ll return to Texas Tech or enter the NFL Draft.
“I’m going to have to go compete,” Galban said. “They’re definitely giving me a chance to compete.”
The Bulldog said Tech coaches have told him they’d try him on special teams, as well, to see what he can do.
At Burnet, Galban was a three-year letterman and has more than 2,000 receiving yards and almost 20 touchdowns. He was named a first-team All-District 13-4A Division I receiver for the season.
The receiver, who runs a 4.3-second 40-yard dash, said the reason Texas Tech offered him a scholarship is because of his speed, hands, and another factor that can’t be taught.
“My playmaking ability,” he said. “I’m liable to take it to the end zone at any point. I’m elusive.”
Playing for the Bulldogs taught him the meaning of “withitness,” a term popularized at Burnet by head coach Kurt Jones that means staying alert and aware of situations.
Galban plans to enroll in January for the spring semester to go through spring drills with the Red Raiders. He packed in some extra academic work with online courses in English and economics so he could graduate in December, ahead of the typical spring commencement.
At Tech, he will room with incoming freshmen Myller Royals, a receiver from Abilene Cooper; Alan Bowman, a quarterback from Grapevine; and Troy Bradshaw, an offensive tackle from Mineral Wells. Galban said the four are friends already thanks to group chats, meeting on visits, and other social connections.
By enrolling at Texas Tech for the spring, Galban is giving up an opportuntity to improve on the state Class 4A bronze medal he earned in the 100-meter dash in 2017.
“My priority is football,” he said. “Track was something I was doing in the offseason to help maintain my speed. Football is what I’m focused on.”
The son of Kim and Dee Galban will major in sports marketing management to either become a sports agent or be a sports promoter.
Though the Bulldogs finished the season with a 4-6 overall record and missed the playoffs, Galban said the season was memorable for him and his family. Younger brother, Chandler, was the starting quarterback, so the two were on the same Bulldogs roster for the first time.
“It was pretty special knowing the bond and connection we had,” Sterling said. “It was fun.”