There’s seldom a year when offensive line recruiting isn’t at or near the top of a program’s priorities list.
It appeared to be Texas’ main agenda in 2013 with three of its top four commitments coming from the big fellas up front and should be one if its most critical points of emphasis again in 2014.
Texas got a big piece of its recruiting puzzle figured out on Monday with the verbal commitment of ESPN Watch List tackle Demetrius Knox, who chose the Longhorns over Ohio State, TCU and Alabama. The 6-foot-4, 296-pound bookend is considered the top junior lineman in the state.
Like turkey at Thanksgiving, you can never have enough depth up front on either side of the ball. Knox not only will supply Texas with that in a few years but will also dramatically increase what at least on paper has to be considered one of the strongest positions of this program moving forward.
Not only are they three of the best linemen in 2013 but they fit the mold of versatility that Texas offensive line coach Stacy Searels loves to have at his disposal.
By the time Knox gets to Texas, he’ll join those three who will either be going into their sophomore seasons or coming off a redshirt campaign.
Josh Cochran and Dominic Espinosa will be seniors. Kennedy Estelle, Sedrick Flowers, Garrett Greenlea, Marcus Hutchins and Taylor Doyle will be juniors, and Camrhon Hughes and Curtis Riser will be sophomores.
There are a lot of highly-touted names in that list who will have the luxury of blocking for three of the Big 12’s best backs in Johnathan Gray, who will be a junior in 2014, and would-be seniors Malcolm Brown and Joe Bergeron.
It’s hard to say what Texas’ quarterback situation will look like at that time with so many options available. Regardless of who it is, the quarterback of choice should have some game experience under his belt, which only bodes well for cohesion across the board. That unity should be at its strongest on the offensive line with players like Knox coming into the fold.
This might not do the Longhorns any favors with the other 2014 offensive tackles they’ve offered -- Cameron Robinson (West Monroe, La./West Monroe) and Braden Smith (Olathe, Kan./Olathe South). But Texas should be able to live with that, and the thought of what Knox's addition will do to what should be an impressive group of 2014 Longhorns linemen.