By Cody Daniel @CodyDanielRS on March 9, 2014
With spring football right around the corner, the Longhorn faithful are anxious for the new “Texas Strong” era, and to finally see Texas resurface as one of college football’s most dominant teams. That all starts with the players who are put on the field and there are a few in particular who will be the most intriguing for the Longhorns this upcoming season.
Marcus Johnson hasn’t had many chances to show how good he can be, but that could be credited to the lack of a solid and accurate arm to get him the ball. From what we did get to see last season, Johnson showed he knows how to find the holes in the defense, and simply beat the secondary at will. Whether it be David Ash or Tyrone Swoopes, Marcus Johnson could be huge for the Longhorns if someone can get him the ball.
Texas has recently made it a habit of loading up on premier running backs. Malcolm Brown was the hot topic until Johnathan Gray took the reigns. Brown still got his fair share of touches, but he was underutilized. Last season, after Gray went out with an Achilles injury, Brown shouldered the load for Texas and was an absolute beast. Once Gray returns, it will be interesting to see what role the proven Brown will play for Texas.
After a solid freshmen season, Hicks has missed the majority of the past two seasons with injuries. If he could stay healthy, Hicks has the talent to be the anchor for a Texas defense that looked rejuvenated last season after bringing defensive coordinator Greg Robinson on board. Robinson is now gone, but Hicks hopes to be there for the full season. If he is, that Texas defense might have teams fearing them again.
Is there any question as to why David Ash is one of the most intriguing players heading into 2014? He missed most of the season last year after suffering a concussion. Ash now finds himself in the thick of a QB battle for the starting position and could miss most of this season as well if he doesn’t perform well enough to slow the Tyrone Swoopes campaign down by the time the season starts.
Tyrone Swoopes is undoubtedly the fan favorite in Austin, and has been since the day he stepped onto the 40 acres. From the first time Swoopes showed flashes of brilliance in last year’s spring game, Texas fans have been chomping at the bit to see him become their starting QB. Charlie Strong just had a similar style quarterback in Louisville who turned out to be pretty decent. Strong would love to make Swoopes his next Heisman candidate.
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