The rest of the 64-team NCAA Tournament field was announced Monday morning, revealing the 3 teams who will join Texas in the Austin Regional. The Longhorns will be joined by #2 seed Indiana, #3 seed Texas A&M and #4 seed Texas Southern.
— NCAA Baseball (@NCAACWS) May 28, 2018
The regional will kick off Friday afternoon with Indiana and Texas A&M playing at 4 PM CST. Texas and Texas Southern will end the night with a game at 8 PM CST.
The Austin Regional is paired with the Oxford Regional, which has #1 seed Ole Miss, #2 seed Tennessee Tech, #3 seed Missouri State and #4 seed Saint Louis.
Commitment Spotlight: S Chris Adimora
When California LB De’Gabriel Floyd committed to Texas in March, he made it clear he would be a huge recruiting presence for the Longhorns on the west coast, specifically in California. When Floyd committed, it appeared to be the first step in Texas re-establishing themselves in one of the most talent-rich areas in the country. The next step was taken today, when Mayfair (CA) S Chris Adimora verbally committed to Texas.
Adimora joins Kenyatta Watson as the only two defensive backs committed in the 2019 class. The California native took an unofficial to Texas for the Orange-White spring game in April, and came away very impressed. In June, Adimora named a top 7 of Alabama, Texas, Michigan, USC, UCLA, Oregon and the only school he ended up taking an official visit to, Boise State. Ultimately, Adimora decided to shut down the recruiting process and pledge to the Longhorns without taking his remaining official visits, giving Texas their first safety commit this class. The 6’1, 181 pounder ranks as the 14th best safety in the country and the 200th best player overall, according to the 247sports composite rankings.
Name: Chris Adimora
High School: Mayfair
City & State: Lakewood, CA
Height: 6’1 (Verified)
Weight: 181 (Verified)
40-yard: 4.71 (Verified)
Shuttle: 4.45 (Verified)
Vertical: 32 (Verified)
2017: 71 tackles, 1 tackle for loss, 7 interceptions
When you turn on the film, the first thing that stands out about Adimora is his ability to make plays. He has a nose for the ball and puts himself in position to produce turnovers. Unlike some guys who are being recruited as safeties but have most of their experience at corner, Adimora exclusively played safety on defense throughout high school, meaning he has a great understanding of his responsibilities and where to be on the field. He projects to be a reliable tackler who also has the ability to light people up who come across the middle of the field. The 4.71 40-time listed is not a concern, as he showed no problems being able to cover sideline to sideline and plays faster than that on tape.As mentioned in the cons, there are some questions about the level of competition in some of his highlights. Regardless, the skills and traits he displays scream productivity at the college level, which makes his high school competition a very minor concern.
When Tom Herman got to Texas, he said he would not limit himself to just the borders of the state to find talent. The 2019 class supports that sentiment wholeheartedly. 5 of the 11 verbal commitments Texas has are from out-of-state players. Adimora and Floyd in particular could help Texas develop a nice pipeline to California in future classes. It doesn’t hurt that the duo can continue to work on 5-star ATH Bru McCoy, who plays at California powerhouse Mater Dei.
The current talent in the defensive backs already on campus should afford Adimora a redshirt year, but he should squarely be in the mix for playing time by 2020. After the 2018 defensive back haul, Tom Herman and Craig Naivar have to be thrilled to add another talented player to the safety room.
Commitment Spotlight: TE Jared Wiley
It is no secret Texas needs quality tight ends to help the Tom Herman offense be successful. After signing Cade Brewer and Reese Leitao in 2017, the Longhorns took one player at the position in the 2018 class, Malcolm Epps out of Spring Dekaney. 2019 set up to be another year where the Longhorns wanted to take multiple commitments at the position. Tom Herman and Co. went out of state for one, securing a commitment from Chandler (AZ) tight end Brayden Liebrock in early May. The second slot was filled today with the commitment of Temple (TX) tight end Jared Wiley.
Wiley was extended an offer in February, and the Longhorns immediately jumped to top of his list. On May 10th, Wiley named a top 3 of Texas, Houston and Missouri. Ultimately, the Longhorns won out and now have the luxury of having 2 high-upside and athletic tight ends in the same recruiting class.
The 6’5, 225 pounder is ranked as the 1185th player in the country and the 43rd best Tight End, according to the 247sports composite rankings.
Name: Jared Wiley
High School: Temple High School
City & State: Temple, Texas
Height: 6’5 (Unverified)
Weight: 225 (Unverified)
40-yard: 5.03 (ESPN)
Shuttle: 4.71 (ESPN)
Vertical: 28.1 (ESPN)
2017- 25 REC, 323 Yards, 4 TD’s
The tight end position may be hardest position to recruit. There are becoming fewer and fewer true tight ends coming out of high school. What Wiley represents is both a combination of skills and projection. The first thing that sticks out when you turn on the film is Wiley’s experience as both a TE and a WR at the high school level. The Temple coaches utilized him in a traditional TE role at times, where he showed the ability to be an effective blocker, while also serving as a receiving threat. When he flexed out to receiver, Wiley showed good hands and a diverse route tree.
For a guy standing at 6’5, Wiley shows good agility with the ball in his hands. His previous experience at quarterback shows in his game, as he has the ability to find open spots in coverage to sit down for his QB. He flashes the ability to play well in traffic, catching several tough passes where he was blanketed by defenders. He also high points the ball well and could be a dangerous target near the goal-line.
The biggest question mark as he transitions into college will be his development as a blocker. While he shows a willingness to block, he will likely need to beef up in the weight room to be able to handle college defenders. If he is able to add weight and learn to utilize his size to leverage defenders in the run game, Wiley could develop into a very good player.
Very early in his tenure at Texas, Tom Herman emphasized how important the tight end position would be for his offense. Cade Brewer flashed major potential as a freshman, and Reese Leitao has received his some praise for his practice performance. It appears the tight end position is beginning to take a turn for the better for Texas after years of sub-par production. The depth will likely allow Wiley to take a redshirt year to pack on some good weight, which should be very beneficial.
Texas had several options when it came to recruiting the tight end position, but the offensive staff made Wiley a priority several months ago and never wavered. Assuming he takes the next step developing as a blocker, Wiley will give Texas another major contributor and possible multi-year starter at one of the most important positions in the Longhorn offense.
Commitment Spotlight: 2020 ATH Hudson Card
Texas has officially broke the seal on the 2020 recruiting class and they did it by staying local and tapping into the talented Lake Travis pipeline. Texas took a bad beat earlier this spring when Garrett Wilson announced he was picking the Buckeyes over the Longhorns, but that didn’t temper the staff’s enthusiasm in recruiting QB/WR Hudson Card.
Card did a little bit of everything for Lake Travis offensively in 2017, but spent most of the season at wide receiver where he put together an impressive sophomore year that lead to 20 plus offers from some the best programs in the nation.
Despite being in the middle of recruiting for the 2019 class, Texas identified the local 2020 product early and made it clear they wanted him to stay in Austin. Texas landing Card is great way for the staff to kick off what is sure to be another very talented recruiting class.
Name: Hudson Card
Position: ATH (QB, WR)
High School: Lake Travis
City & State: Austin, Texas Measurables
Height: 6’2 (Unverified)
Weight: 167 (Unverified)
40-yard: 4.79 (Unverified)
2017: 604 Passing Yards, 6 TDs (3 INTs), 459 Rushing Yards, 6 TDs, 69 Receptions, 1137 yards, 13 TDs
- He’s a Swiss army knife on the offensive side of the ball. Will be a guy you can get creative with due to his versatility.
- Very decisive with his steps and movements. Doesn’t have a lot of wasted movements.
- Already runs very clean routes at this stage in his development and consistently gets separation. Very tough guy to stay with in coverage.
- Very elusive open field runner with the ball in his hands. Possesses good wiggle, lateral agility, and vision.
- Very reliable hands as a receiver. Catches balls consistently all over the field and shows a willingness to make catches in traffic.
- As a Quarterback, he shows good touch on his passes and the ability to place the ball where only his receiver can get it.
- Familiarity with the Texas offense. Former Texas QC Coach Will Stein is the new Lake Travis offensive coordinator, so Card will get to take advantage of having a coach who knows the Longhorn offense.
- Currently weighs in south of 170. Will need to spend some time in the weight room and add some good mass to his frame.
- The 2018 season will be his first at QB full time. Depending on where he projects long term, the lost reps at the receiver position could be unfortunate.
- Has a tendency to tuck and run a tad early when at quarterback. Will also need to learn how to slide more often and conserve hits on his body.
- Curious to see how he reacts when he faces bigger, strong corners that will be willing to get more physical with him when pressed up.
If there was one word to describe Card, it would be playmaker. He was utilized all over the field during his sophomore year at Lake Travis, and the results speak for themselves. His agility and ability as a route runner make it easy to see wide receiver as his future home, but his potential as dual-threat quarterback is hard to ignore. Card will take over as the starting quarterback for the Cavaliers in 2018, where he hopes to build off of a good performance in the 2017 State Championship game when he filled in for an injured Matthew Baldwin and nearly led Lake Travis to a state title over powerhouse Allen.
As a receiver, Card is a polished route runner with reliable hands. He shows good elusiveness in the open field and isn’t afraid to go over the middle or make catches in traffic. His experience at quarterback benefit him as a route runner, where he shows the ability to read defenses and adjust his routes accordingly.
At quarterback, Card’s game shows similarities to former Lake Travis QB Baker Mayfield. The shiftiness and elusiveness he shows at receiver carries over to QB, where he shows the ability to extends plays with his legs and keep his eyes downfield. The threat of him as a runner forces defenses to be honest, creating the opportunity for receivers. Card shows the potential for good arm strength, with the ability to make strong throws over the middle and outside the hashes. The biggest adjustment if he stays at QB at the next level will be progressing through reads and becoming more comfortable in the pocket.
Card is the type of player who you will always take a commitment from and figure out his position later. While his highest potential may be at quarterback, there is little doubt Card would also succeed as a receiver. His skills and athleticism will translate well to the college game. The coaching staff should have the luxury of giving Card a redshirt year to help develop him at whatever position they choose.
Texas has not been shy about offering 2020 players who they feel can be elite, and Card fits that category. It doesn’t hurt when the talent is in your own backyard, and Tom Herman was able to take advantage of the proximity and reel in another quality player.
Commitment Spotlight: Kenyatta Watson
Texas reeled in their first defensive back commit of the 2019 class with the verbal pledge of 4-star Kenyatta Watson. The Georgia product is ranked as the 11th best safety in the country (187th overall), according to the 247composite rankings.
After signing an historic defensive back class in 2018, Texas had the opportunity to be selective on who to pursue in the 2019 class. Watson was offered back in November while he was committed to Florida State. The commitment did not last though, as Watson de-committed from the Seminoles in January, and proceeded to visit Austin in late February. In early March, Watson named a final two of Texas and Notre Dame, with Texas set to host him on an official visit the weekend of April 27th. Following the official visit, Watson ultimately chose to shut down his recruitment and pledge to the Longhorns, giving Tom Herman another key piece of the 2019 class.
Name: Kenyatta Watson
High School: Grayson
City & State: Loganville,GA
40-yard time: 4.50
No stats available.
- Plays very physical. He is not afraid to get up close to the scrimmage and disrupt the timing and rhythm of a receiver. In the run game, Watson shows a good nose for the football and isn’t afraid to fight through blockers
- Reliable open-field tackler. Shows the ability to tackle in space and take good angles to the ball carrier. His tape shows him reading several screen plays well and making an open field tackle
- Possesses quick hips and good length as a corner. Stays with receivers well and rarely gets beat deep
- Very athletic and multiple. Watson has the speed to play sideline to sideline, while having the athleticism to play pretty much anywhere in the secondary.
- Impressive special teams player. Played on both punt block and field goal block, where he used his speed off the edge to disrupt kicks. Will almost assuredly be a special teams contributor early in his career.
- Needs to show a little better awareness with the ball in the air. There were times where balls that should have been picked off ended up as PBU.
- There are questions about whether he is a safety or a corner. He probably has the frame to tack on a couple extra pounds, which could lead to his future being at safety.
The first thing that stands out about Watson when turning on his film is his length. At 6’2, he uses his length both at the line of scrimmage and in coverage. Watson is no stranger to press coverage, and he isn’t afraid to get physical with receivers, re-routing them at the line and throwing off their timing. In the run game, Watson shows the ability to make open field tackles and be a solid run defender.
The biggest question for Watson has he heads into college is what position best suits him long term. Texas appears to be recruiting him as a corner, and he has the skills to be successful, but his best long term position may end up being safety. Regardless of where he ends up, his quick hips, good length and physicality help him profile well at any of the defensive back positions.
The 2019 defensive back class in the state of Texas is not as strong as the 2018 class, so it is not surprising Tom Herman opted to look at some out-of-state players. Watson’s father mentioned early in the process that current Texas TE Reese Leitao is cousins with Kenyatta, so it certainly did not hurt to have a family tie to Austin. Many pegged Watson as a Notre Dame lean early in the process, but Tom Herman once again worked his magic. The Longhorns now have 2 big out-of-state commits, with Watson joining California LB De’Gabriel Floyd.
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