The Longhorns stole a recruit and a little momentum on Wednesday when they landed a commitment from Austin (TX) Westlake linebacker Breckyn Hager. The Longhorns were able to flip Hager who committed to Baylor in May. Breckynâ€™s brother Bryce is currently at Baylor, but Hagerâ€™s father is former well-known Longhorn Britt Hager. Britt holds the top two single season tackle totals in Texas history, and is also the career tackles leader.
Breckyn is the seventeenth commitment in the 2015 class and is ranked a three star in the composite rankings. He chose Texas over offers from Baylor, San Diego State, Oklahoma, and SMU.
Hager is the first linebacker to commit to Texas during this cycle. It looks like he would fit as an inside linebacker at this point in time, but could play on the weakside as well. Texas will lose Steve Edmond and Jordan Hicks after this season, and will need to fill some holes at those positions. Texas is still chasing several linebackers including Cameron Townsend and the Stateâ€™s top player, Malik Jefferson.
Hager has a good frame at 6â€™3, 210 lbs and has room to add on weight. He doesnâ€™t look to be a plus athlete, but isnâ€™t slow by any means. He moves well laterally and could play as a sideline to sideline guy. The best aspect of Hagerâ€™s game is when he is reading, diagnosing, and coming down hill. Hager is a dynamic player at the point of attack and what he lacks in athleticism, he makes up for with play recognition, technique, and discipline.
Hager appears to process his reads very quickly and then puts himself in a position to make a play with little wasted motion. Heâ€™s also played at defensive end, and shows the ability to be a capable pass rusher or blitzer. He is a bit of an arm tackler at times, and could struggle if forced into coverage. Hager also plays at running back for Westlake at times.
Hager lacks a lot of the physical tools to be ranked higher, but his father and brother were over-achievers who squeezed more out of effort and hard work than raw talent. Hager could be a guy who makes an impact early in his career on special teams, then cracks the defensive lineup when he puts on some weight.
I think he has potential to be an all conference performer, but that is probably his ceiling. Still, this kid looks like someone who will be a big contributor for multiple years even if he isnâ€™t the star of the defense.