Every week through the football season, HornsNation’s William Wilkerson and Max Olson will break down five things they learned while on the road at Texas high school football games. From the latest on Longhorn commits and offers to game observations to players who caught their attention, they've got you covered. Here’s what they saw this weekend:
William’s game: Pflugerville Hendrickson vs. Round Rock Stony Point
Max’s game: San Antonio Brennan vs. San Antonio Brackenridge
1. Derick Roberson is back
If Derick Roberson (San Antonio/Brennan) is feeling at all rusty these days, he sure isn’t showing it.
The Texas 2014 defensive end commit was suspended for Brennan’s first three games this season due to a violation of team rules. In his second game of the year Thursday night, Roberson showed why he’s a defensive end Texas coveted.
In a 42-21 comeback victory over Brackenridge, Roberson’s pressure on pass rushes forced two key interceptions that swung the game.
The speedy 6-foot-4, 220-pound defensive end was all over the place on Thursday, lining up at both end spots and wreaking havoc to help Brennan hold Brackenridge to 168 total yards.
The energy Roberson brought to his defensive unit was unmistakable, and it showed when his team knocked out the Eagles with a 28-point fourth quarter.
Nobody took more joy in that win or did more celebrating than Roberson. Hard to blame him. After sitting out for so long, he’s happy to be back.
- Max Olson
2. Perine sound in victory
Pflugerville (Texas) Hendrickson went with what was working on Friday during its 16-13 win over Round Rock (Texas) Stony Point. That included a sound, productive passing attack and a grind-it-out approach with ESPN Watch List running back Samaje Perine.
It wasn’t his flashiest performance by any means. But his 15 rushes for 57 yards provided a big lift in critical situations. Even more impressive is the fact that Perine did so having come off a gruesome knee injury at the end of last season that saw him tear his ACL and MCL.
Those numbers brought his season totals to a very respectable 105 carries for 948 yards and seven touchdowns. He’s well on his way to rushing for more yards and touchdowns than the 1,438 and eight he posted as a sophomore.
Perine reports offers from Purdue and Tennessee but more will surely come his way as he further removes himself from his injury and continues to put up these numbers.
- William Wilkerson
3. 2014 WR has huge game
If Latrell Martin (Pflugerville, Texas/Hendrickson) continues to perform like he did on Friday, he’ll become more than just a blip on college coaches’ radars.
The 2014 wide receiver from just north of Austin was really the lone spark on offense for either Hendrickson or Round Rock (Texas) Stony Point. Both teams struggled to find a rhythm on offense at times.
But Martin provided all that Hendrickson would need by catching eight passes for 125 yards and one touchdown in its 16-13 victory. His 72-yard touchdown catch in the fourth proved to be the game winner.
Martin has already surpassed his numbers from a season ago when he caught 12 passes for 150 yards and two touchdowns. He has 18 receptions for 248 yards and two scores on the year.
He doesn’t report any offers at this time but that could change by seasons end, or sooner, as schools flock to his school to check in on him and Perine.
4. Best 2014 Texas DE? Good question.
In watching Roberson on Thursday night, I couldn’t help wonder how he’d match up when put on the same field as Coppell’s Solomon Thomas and Arlington Martin’s Myles Garrett.
All three are on the ESPN Watch List. All three hold Texas offers. Roberson picked UT. I wouldn’t be surprised if Thomas does too eventually. Garrett might be a little more of a battle.
Texas had the opportunity to evaluate each of the three defensive ends this summer at its Mack Brown football camps.
Garrett is the tallest of the trio at 6-foot-5, and he’s a weight room warrior. Like him, Roberson is tall and a bit lanky, but you see why Texas wanted him. You can pack lots of weight on the frames of those two.
I’ve seen both play this season. I preferred Roberson. Garrett had issues with getting off blocks and disappeared at times. Then again, he was playing DeSoto. Doesn’t get much tougher than that.
Thomas, at 6-foot-3 and 265 pounds, is the thickest and perhaps the strongest of the group. I think he’s less of a project compared to the rest and a guy who can contribute right away. He’d be my favorite of the trio.
There are lots of 2014 ends who get attention, but right now there’s no topping these three.
5. A few guys to keep an eye on
ESPN 150 wide receiver Robbie Rhodes (Fort Worth, Texas/Southwest) had two receptions for 78 yards, including a 59-yard touchdown in a 62-14 win over Fort Worth Western Hills. The Baylor commit also had a 70-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to end the game. … Nick Harvey caught touchdown passes of 22 and 26 yards, and Nick Alexander caught a 44-yard touchdown in Lancaster’s 45-14 victory over Waxahachie. ... Texas commitment Daniel Gresham rushed for touchdowns of 1, 47, 8 and 43 yards in Fort Worth (Texas) All Saints’ 49-8 win over Episcopal School of Dallas. ... Texas commit Jerrod Heard completed 10 of 17 passes for 152 yards, three touchdowns and one interception, and he also ran eight times for 72 yards and a score in Denton Guyer’s 62-0 win over Denton.