Texas Longhorns Change in Recruiting Philosophy Helps them Take Back Momentum

By Marian Hinton
Kevin Jairaj: USA TODAY Sports

*Update: In the five hours since this article was published, the Texas Longhorns received another big time commitment this evening. Read about it below. 

Mack Brown and his Texas Longhorns recently had a change in recruiting philosophy and so far, it’s paying off big time for the program. The school recently brought in Patrick Suddes from the University of Alabama as the school’s new director of player personnel in charge of recruiting, and he and the rest of the coaching staff hasn’t wasted any time in hitting the ground running.

In an attempt to keep up with top out of state programs that have started offering tenth graders inside the State of Texas, the Longhorns held their first ever Sophomore Day a few weekends ago. Additionally, the team’s Spring Game was played over last weekend, and both proved to be great for recruiting.

In the last couple of weeks, Texas has added to their 2014 recruiting class, securing commitments from DE Jake McMillon, OL Terrell Cuney, DT Trey Lealaimatafao, and DB Darion Johnson. Just yesterday, the Longhorns received a verbal commitment from Courtney Garnett, a 6-foot-2, 280-pound DT out St. Augustine in New Orleans. He chose the Horns over rivals Oklahoma Sooners and the Texas A&M Aggies.

That momentum carried into this evening, the Longhorns also received a verbal commitment from Otaro Alaka, the state’s 6-3, 210-pound No. 1 linebacker out of Houston (Cypress Falls). Alaka chose Texas over the Aggies.

As far as the recruiting class of 2015, the Longhorns have gotten off to a fast start, picking up verbal commitments from some of the top players in the state since Sophomore Day, including OL Aaron Garza, DT Bryce English and DB Jason Campbell.

Of course, recruiting at such an early age has its share of concerns, primarily whether or not a team can hold onto the recruits for so long, but Texas has always been strong at keeping their classes in tact for the most part. Texas made the right choice in being proactive rather than reactive, as they’ve been over the last couple of seasons.

Some have commented that Mack Brown, once the best at reeling in the state’s top players, may have recently lost his touch. However, over the last few weeks, Brown has proven that he’s not quite done yet. You have to give him (and Patrick Suddes) credit for seeing that the recruiting philosophy needed to be tweaked, and then for going out and making the necessary changes to get it done.


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