Friday, March 29, 2013
Roundtable: Key spring game visitors
By Max Olson and William Wilkerson
Every Friday, HornsNation recruiting writers William Wilkerson and Max Olson answer a question about the Longhorns.
This week’s question: It's a big recruiting weekend with Texas Relays and Saturday's spring game. Who's the most important visitor coming to Austin?
William Wilkerson: Any time Jamal Adams (Lewisville, Texas/Hebron) steps on campus he instantly becomes one of the most important visitors wherever he goes.
ESPN Watch List safety Jamal Adams has visited the Longhorns several times over the past year.
Adams, far and away, is the recruit that I get asked most about in terms of where he stands with the Longhorns, and with good reason.
For as much as Texas loves calling itself “DBU,” it has really struggled bringing in its top safety target over the past few seasons.
Adams knows the history there and of what Duane Akina has done with players in the past. His entourage of former players at Texas’ pro day on Tuesday included Pro Bowlers, Super Bowl champions and multi-year starters in the NFL.
The Longhorns are among what I believe to be a handful of schools with legitimate shots at Adams. He hasn’t listed specific schools in any sort of order, but Texas and Oklahoma are among his top contenders with Florida, Florida State and Ohio State in there as well.
I think some more schools can sneak in the mix depending on how much they come after him from here forward. I’m just not so sure how many of those schools can offer him the ideal of early playing time like the Longhorns can.
Texas wants him to be the next Kenny Vaccaro. I’ve seen this guy numerous times in person, and he definitely has those capabilities and then some.
There are so many other 2014 important visitors in addition to Adams. But I’ll go with the 2015 trio of Daylon Mack (Gladewater, Texas/Gladewater), Kendall Sheffield (Fort Bend, Texas/Marshall) and Deionte Thompson (Orange, Texas/West Orange Stark) for obvious reasons.
They are all national recruits who are already top priorities for the Longhorns.
Max Olson: After Texas hosted arguably the No. 1 running back in the country, Leonard Fournette (New Orleans/St. Augustine), on Thursday, any other visitor this weekend practically pales in comparison.
But the one who stands out most to me, at least of key 2014 targets, is K.D. Cannon (Mount Pleasant, Texas/Mount Pleasant). Texas has an opportunity this weekend to make a major impression.
As we’ve been saying for months, the Watch List wide receiver prospect places a high priority on offensive scheme. Baylor and Texas Tech moved high up on his list by selling him on their pass-happy, NFL talent-producing offenses.
Cannon was impressed by what he saw at Texas junior day: An up-tempo offense that ran no-huddle and often put up to four receivers on the field. Wait until he sees it in action, at near-full game speed, in front of a good crowd at a night game at DKR. Easy to see why a kid could fall for that.
For how often he says very little about where his recruitment stands, the fact is Cannon has been on campus a bunch in the past year. Another chance to get the state’s No. 1 wideout to a game and among Texas’ 2014 verbal commits ought to be valuable.
Just as important, besides Jamal Adams, could be Tony Brown.
We all assume that, at the end of the day, the Beaumont (Texas) Ozen cornerback will end up at LSU. But it would appear a lot of time still has to pass before he’s going to get serious about a commitment. Texas could still win him over.
You’re not going to find a better corner in this state than Brown, and the Longhorns don’t have any committed in this class.
He’ll be in town this weekend for Texas Relays – keep an eye on his thrilling 100-meter race vs. Antwuan Davis and a field of studs, plus the 110-meter hurdles – and then will take in the Orange-White game. It’s a big-time visit anytime he’s in Austin.