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2019 Recruits – Defense
Two weeks ago, we broke down the offensive targets for the 2019 class. Today, we do the same for the defensive side of the ball.
DE Marcus Stripling – Stripling attended junior day in Austin last weekend and came away impressed with what the Longhorns had to show him. The number 1 defensive end in Texas is also high on Texas A&M and Oklahoma. As of this moment, we believe A&M has the slight edge. He says he will return to Austin at some point in the spring, and Texas needs to get him back on campus.
DT DeMarvin Leal – The Converse Judson product has been the number one priority along the defensive line for a while. Similar to Stripling, Leal was in attendance at Junior Day and raved about the relationship he has with the Texas staff. A&M and Alabama stand as Texas biggest competition. Leal plans on using his official visits this spring with an eye towards making a commitment towards the end of the summer. Texas is in strong position but will need to continue to stay on the #1 defensive tackle in Texas.
LB De’Gabriel Floyd – Floyd is the lone realistic linebacker target on the board at the moment with Marcel Brooks recently announcing a top 2 of LSU and Alabama. Floyd was blown away on his junior day visit and said it was hard to put into words the impression Texas made on him. The Longhorns are in great position to host him for an official visit at some point during the season. UT is squarely in the mix here, with USC, UCLA and Oregon also high on the 5 stars list.
LB David Gbenda – The fast rising linebacker out of Cinco Ranch has really seen his stock take off lately and he now approaching 20 offers with several regional schools jumping into the mix recently. Gbenda visited Texas over the weekend and the Longhorns entered the race and made a very good impression on the rangy linebacker and his family. Texas is going to be a key player in this recruitment going forward.
CB/S Erick Young – Young made it to junior day with his teammate Jamal Morris. Texas impressed him during his visit, but Oklahoma and Texas A&M are also high on his list. A&M probably holds the slight lead at the time, but Texas has made up ground quickly. Young should be back on campus for an official visit in the Spring before he makes his decision.
CB Chris Steele – The California native has been high on Texas throughout the process. Steele has a great relationship with Jason Washington. He has already set up 4 of his 5 official visits to Louisville. Oklahoma, Florida and LSU. So where will he take the 5th one? Texas has a good shot of getting him on campus for an official visit, and if he does then Texas will have a real shot at landing one of the top corners in the country.
CB Marcus Banks – Originally scheduled to commit on March 3rd, Banks pushed his decision back after leaving Texas’ junior day. Banks made no secret that the Longhorns and Aggies are the 2 schools sticking out to him the most. We feel that Texas has the slight edge right now. LSU is also a factor in his recruitment, and he visited Baton Rouge this past weekend.
S Jamal Morris – The teammate of Erick Young spoke just as highly about Texas as Young himself. Morris has a top 3 of LSU, Oklahoma and Texas, and he plans on using his official visits this spring. Texas will need to get him back on campus for an official visit to have a chance.
S Lewis Cine – The Massachusetts native was recently offered by Texas weeks ago. As has been reported by other outlets, Cine is planning on moving to Texas for his senior season. The nations number 3 safety has offers from all over the country, but Texas appears to have at least a fighters chance in this recruitment.
S Jalen Catalon – This was a recruitment that Texas was a little slow to get into, but it was obvious that they needed to and now they are in with both feet.. Catalon may lack great size, but he is pound for pound one of the best football players in the state and is also a star on the baseball diamond. Clemson was getting a lot o favorable buzz early on in this one, but Texas and Craig Naivar are chipping working hard here and recently hosted Catalon for an UOV in February.
S Kenyatta Watson – Watson unofficially visited Texas 2 weeks ago. Texas has several factors working in their favor in this recruitment. Watson has already set up his official visit to Texas for April 27th. The Georgia native has already named a top 2 of Notre Dame and Texas. The Longhorns are in a good position here.
Q: Who will be the next commit?
A: This is a tough question to answer right now because of how fluid recruiting is, but if he sticks to his announcement date I will say Jordan Whittington.
Q: Who do you expect to be the QB this year?
A: Tom Herman has made it clear that both Sam Ehlinger will compete throughout the spring and into the summer for the starting quarterback position. Does Ehlinger have the slight lead because of his skillset is a better fit for the type of offense Texas wants to run? Probably. But Ehlinger has to work on limiting turnovers and becoming more polished in the passing game. If he can’t do either of his things, then the competition will be really interesting.
Q: What’s the % that Anderson will select Texas?
A: Anderson wrapped up his visits with a recent trip to Oklahoma. The Austin Westlake native took his first visit to Texas. Anderson’s relationship with Herb Hand is big here. If we were to put a percentage on it, it would be 65% in favor of Texas.
Q: Any word on how many we are going to take per position for 2019?
A: This is a good questions. After taking a huge class in 2018, Texas will probably again take close to a full class in 2019. Around 25 seems like a good target number. Position breakdown could look something like:
You can also bet Texas will take some guys as ‘Best Player Available’ if the opportunity presents itself late in the cycle.
Q: Is the staff prioritizing NaNa Osafo-Mensah? Things seem to be quiet since we offered. Didn’t visit the good guys for Junior Day.
A: Osafo-Mensah is a priority for this staff, but they have a lot of work to do and everyone seems to be chasing Notre Dame right now. Still early and I bet they get him on campus sometime this spring.
Q: Which 5-star players do you think Texas can land this cycle?
A: Rankings can fluctuate as the year goes along, but right now it looks like Texas’ best chances would be with Jordan Whittington or Chris Steele. Steele has been interested in Texas throughout the process, and Texas could receive his 5th official visit.
Q: Why is Roschon Johnson not getting much love from the ranking services? Kid does things that make your jaw drop. Reminds of VY.
A: The film does not lie on Johnson. His passing skills improved greatly during his senior season and his running ability has not changed. He accounted for 64 touchdowns a season ago. Johnson is ranked as the 5th best dual threat in the country, according to the 247 composite rankings. He should be a nationally ranked player, but some services must disagree.
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