Texas Longhorns: Jake McMillon

Incoming impact countdown: No. 19-23

February, 17, 2014
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Now that they’ve signed their letters of intent, Texas’ incoming recruits can officially toss their stars in the trash. They don’t matter now.

While such ratings and rankings are helpful throughout the recruiting process, they mean nothing once a player sets foot on campus and joins the program. Gold stars won’t decide who gets to play as a freshman. Preparation, fit, need, raw talent, confidence, some good fortune -- a whole lot of real stuff matters now.

In 2013, only three Texas true freshmen -- Kent Perkins, Tyrone Swoopes and Jacorey Warrick -- and two junior college transfers played in a signing class of 15. Which members of this next class have a chance to help out the Longhorns from Day 1?

This week we’re breaking down the Texas signees by their ability to make an early impact during their time on the 40 Acres, counting down from No. 23 to No. 1.

23. RB Kevin Shorter
Newton (Texas) | 6-foot, 190 pounds

2013: 630 rushing yards, 9 rushing TDs, 11 receptions, 224 receiving yards, 4 receiving TDs

Shorter knows playing in 2014 is not likely because of the spinal cord injury he suffered in October. If he’s going to don the burnt orange in his time in Austin, Shorter could need a procedure and will need the approval of UT doctors. He’s facing a long road to recovery but hopes a college career is at the end of the road.

When healthy, Shorter was one of East Texas’ most dynamic athletes, capable of changing games as a rusher, receiver and defensive back. He was all over the place in Newton’s Wing-T offense and could touch the ball in a variety of ways in a college offense if cleared to play again.

D'Onta Foreman
Max Olson/ESPNThree-star signee D'Onta Foreman has the frame to be a physical running back or a linebacker.
22. OT Elijah Rodriguez
Houston Cypress Creek | 6-6, 280

A last-second January find by the new coaching staff, Rodriguez was set to sign with Colorado but couldn’t turn down becoming a Longhorn and following in his grandfather’s footsteps. He had a dozen offers but remained a sleeper prospect throughout the past year.

Rodriguez already has said he’ll likely take a redshirt in 2014, but he’s excited about the prospect of devoting a year to his development. Texas loses three starting offensive linemen but has plenty of talent in the cupboard. Rodriguez’s talents probably won’t be needed this fall, but he has the right mentality going in and could be a guy that surprises in this class down the road.

21. RB D'Onta Foreman
Texas City | 6-2, 217

2013: 2,102 rushing yards, 31 rushing TDs, 22 tackles, 12 TFLs, 5 sacks, 1 interception

Where does he fit in best on a college field? That’s a question that has to intrigue the new Texas coaching staff. Foreman was an underrated commit last summer who runs a legit 4.4, a power back who also busted a 99-yard touchdown run as a senior. His stats in his final year at Texas City made Texas look awful smart for offering.

While Texas could need some help in the backfield, especially if Johnathan Gray is slow to get back to the lineup, Foreman just might be a linebacker, too. He’s certainly got the size and frame to develop toward that role. For now, he should just focus on getting qualified and getting to Austin.

20. S Jason Hall
South Grand Prairie | 6-2, 190

2013: 57 tackles, 6 interceptions, 6 pass breakups, 2 touchdowns

It’s hard to peg whether Hall is underrated or properly rated on this list, because it’s obvious Texas has some real needs at safety for 2014 and beyond. But Hall has been underestimated throughout his high school days, and he’ll arrive in the summer with every intention of contributing early.

He brings nice size to the safety spot and has dedicated a lot of time to working with DB coaches and raising his game. Hall’s game might blossom with a redshirt year, especially in the weight room, but don’t count him out for immediate playing time just yet.

19. DT Jake McMillon
Abilene | 6-3, 245

2013: 43 tackles, 4 TFLs, 1 sack, 3 pass breakups

It wouldn't be shocking at all if McMillon works his way up this list in the summer, because his reputation for hard work at Abilene was impeccable. He’s an interesting kind of tweener along the defensive line -- Texas coaches considered him a defensive tackle in camp last summer -- but one who brings a lot to the table.

No matter where new defensive line coach Chris Rumph puts McMillon, there’s going to be a need for depth throughout the Texas line in 2014. His best bet for the future is probably to bulk up toward a spot up the middle, but he is versatile and will agree to whatever is required to chip in for the Longhorns early in his career.

Top position classes: DL 

February, 14, 2014
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With national signing day in the books, RecruitingNation is looking at the top position classes. For the full series, click here.

Nationally (and SEC)
Texas A&M went into the 2014 class knowing that size and athleticism was an absolute must on its defensive front. And Kevin Sumlin and staff delivered on those glaring needs. Leading the way is No. 1 defensive end and five-star player Myles Garrett (Arlington, Texas/James Martin), who has the size, speed and power combination to be a difference-maker early on next fall. The 6-foot-5, 247-pound Garrett is joined at defensive end by ESPN 300 No. 203 Qualen Cunningham (Chandler, Ariz./Hamilton), and high three-star Jarrett Johnson (Katy, Texas/Seven Lakes), who has a nonstop motor. While the Aggies have some talented young defensive tackles, continuing to add size and athleticism to the interior was a must. No. 150 DeShawn Washington (Nederland, Texas/Nederland) and four-star early enrollee Zaycoven Henderson (Longview, Texas/Longview) add disruptive explosiveness and athleticism.

The Aggies had the nation’s best defensive line class; here’s which schools had the best in each of the remaining power conferences:

Texas coaches back on the road recruiting 

January, 16, 2014
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The dead period is over and it’s time to hit the road. Charlie Strong has his new coaching staff in place and is ready to get back to work on closing out Texas’ recruiting class.

The Longhorns currently have 21 committed prospects, though several are looking to take official visits elsewhere this month. There are big-time recruits still available. And don’t forget the new names who are sure to pop up on Texas’ radar in the next few weeks.

Here’s a rundown of where things stand and what names you should know entering the end of the dead period.

Solid commitments


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Editor's Note: Henderson on Tuesday afternoon recommitted to Texas Insider following a conversation with new Longhorns coach Charlie Strong.

The once-mighty Texas defensive line class for the Class of 2014 is now half of what it used to be. Literally.

A Texas source confirmed that four-star defensive tackle Zaycoven Henderson (Longview, Texas/Longview) has decommitted from the Longhorns. A 6-foot-1, 318-pound Semper Fidelis All-American, Henderson is looking at other options after learning on Tuesday that defensive line coach Bo Davis left Texas for a similar position at USC.

Henderson joins fellow four-star defensive tackles Trey Lealaimatafao (San Antonio/Warren) and Courtney Garnett (New Orleans/St. Augustine) as former Texas commits. All three made their decisions Tuesday evening, hours after hearing the news about Davis.

Texas entered the week with six commitments on the defensive line. The Longhorns now have three in three-star defensive end Sione Teuhema (Keller, Texas/Keller), three-star defensive tackle Jake McMillon (Abilene, Texas/Abilene) and ESPN 300 defensive end Derick Roberson (San Antonio/Brennan), the team’s top-ranked commit.

Henderson originally committed to TCU last February but decommitted in September. On Dec. 9, Henderson gave Texas his verbal pledge during a ceremony at his school. He chose Texas over Baylor and Texas Tech.

 

Loss halts Texas' recruiting momentum 

November, 17, 2013
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Everything was set up so perfectly for the Longhorns prior to kickoff on Saturday afternoon.

They came in riding a six-game winning streak with a chance to make it seven against a marquee opponent in Oklahoma State, who was in search of its sixth straight victory.

The sidelines were littered with some of the top recruits in the country, including the nation’s top player in running back Leonard Fournette (New Orleans/Saint Augustine), ESPN 300 safety Jamal Adams (Lewisville, Texas/Hebron) and ESPN 300 cornerback Tony Brown (Beaumont, Texas/Ozen). The latter two were on official visits.

The sky was even painted a picturesque blend of blue, pink, orange and yellow.

But then kickoff came and with it went much of the momentum, both on the field and in recruiting, that Texas had built up over the last two months.

Oklahoma State manhandled the Longhorns. The final score was 38-13 but it could have been a lot worse. A mass exodus of a tired fan base began late in the third quarter.

It was the exact opposite of the environment Texas was hoping to create for the recruits in attendance. They witnessed Oklahoma State bask in glory from their seats directly behind the Cowboys’ bench.

Many of those were 2014 commits, as 12 of Texas' 24-member class were expected to be in Austin.

In addition to 2015 commit Jalen Campbell (Corpus Christi, Texas/Flour Bluff), the Longhorns were also expected to host several top junior prospects. They included athlete Louis Brown (Burton, Texas/Burton), running back Lanard Fournette (New Orleans/Saint Augustine), cornerback Holton Hill (Houston/Lamar), quarterback J.W. Ketchum (Missouri City, Texas/Thurgood Marshall), cornerback Keivon Ramsey (Converse, Texas/Judson), wide receiver Kemah Siverand (Houston/Cypress Ridge), linebacker Cameron Townsend (Missouri City, Texas/Ridge Point) and defensive back Jordan Tolbert (Missouri City, Texas/Ridge Point).

Texas also hosted its lone 2016 commit, receiver Reggie Hemphill, along with several 2016 teammates from Manvel, Texas, in safety Deontay Anderson, who has a Texas offer, linebacker Jordan Carmouche, and athlete D’Eriq King. Fort Worth (Texas) Southwest 2016 quarterback Devin Williams was also slated to be in attendance.

For as ugly as the loss was, and for as many questions as it has already brought about concerning the future of Texas coach Mack Brown, this defeat doesn’t seem like it will have that much of an affect on those already verbally pledged to Texas.

They’ve endured quite a bit already but have long maintained their desire to help turn this program around. Take this tweet from Cuney for example: “There they go on my Coach Brown! Get off his back man. He not the 1 playing. He can only do so much!”

OU-Texas: 2014 recruiting tale of the tape 

October, 10, 2013
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When the Red River Rivalry is played, records are thrown out the window. When the game’s over, some love looking into the future to play “what if” with the next batch of talented college players.

While both teams have some room to land uncommitted recruits, both are pretty happy with where they are currently. Texas has 24 commits, and Oklahoma has 14, and when comparing ESPN 300 athletes, Texas only has a 7-5 lead.

Which team has the Red River Rivalry recruiting edge this year? Here’s a breakdown of eight positions and which team holds the edge for now.

Quarterback

Perhaps the most competitive comparison between the schools is at quarterback. ESPN 300s Justice Hansen (Edmond, Okla./Santa Fe) and Jerrod Heard (Denton, Texas/Guyer) are the nation’s No. 4 and No. 5 dual-threat quarterbacks. Hansen is the Sooners’ top-ranked commit and has proven himself a first-class leader of the class. Heard already has one state championship ring, and he’s hoping for a repeat performance in December before arriving at the Forty Acres.

Advantage: Oklahoma

Dallis Todd
Erik McKinney/ESPNOklahoma will get 6-foot-5 playmaker Daliis Todd in its 2014 class.
Running back

There are high expectations for both ESPN 300 Samaje Perine (Pflugerville, Texas/Hendrickson) and Donald "Duke" Catalon (Houston/Eisenhower). Perine is a physical specimen with the combination of power and finesse at 6-foot and 213 pounds. Catalon, at 5-10 and 193 pounds, has the agility and overall balance to make him a potential every-down back. Texas also has three-star Kevin Shorter (Newton, Texas/Newton), a player who plays with a chip on his shoulder, looking to show that he should be mentioned with the elite talent.

Advantage: Texas

Wide receiver

Neither Texas nor Oklahoma will be complaining about their receiver crop. The Longhorns have an ESPN 300 player in Armanti Foreman (Texas City, Texas/Texas City), a rising star in Emanuel Porter (Dallas/Lincoln) and a player in Garrett Gray (Marble Falls, Texas/Marble Falls) who caught 13 passes for 293 yards and five touchdowns in a game last year. Oklahoma has size and athleticism in 6-5, 210-pound ESPN 300 receiver Dallis Todd (La Mirada, Calif./La Mirada) and a 6-7, 180-pound end zone threat in Jeffery Mead (Tulsa, Okla/Union)

Advantage: Texas

Tight end

Oklahoma has done well with recruiting tight ends and was able to land ESPN 300 players Carson Meier (Tulsa, Okla./Union) and Mark Andrews (Scottsdale, Ariz./Desert Mountain). Meier is the No. 5 Y-tight end in the country, while Andrews is the No. 8 H-tight end. Texas also has a good one in junior college pledge John Thomas (Bossier City, La./Trinity Valley Community College). At 6-6 and 255 pounds, Thomas can be used as both a reliable blocker and receiver.

Advantage: Oklahoma

Offensive line

It’s hard to believe that between the two schools, only three offensive linemen are committed.

Sooners commit Alex Dalton (Troy, Ohio/Troy) is considered one of the nation’s top centers, and guard Jonathan Alvarez (Mesquite, Texas/Horn), with his work ethic alone, will surprise a lot of people in a couple of years. Texas, like Oklahoma, has a four-star center committed in Terrell Cuney (Jasper, Texas/Jasper). Cuney is a player who might see immediate playing time as a freshman.

Advantage: Texas

Defensive line


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Best Big 12 classes by position 

September, 10, 2013
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There is still plenty of work for every Big 12 program to do before the completion of the 2014 recruiting cycle. But one can begin to at least paint an outline for how each class is going to look come February.

Here is a look at which Big 12 teams have the best 2014 recruiting class at each position.

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Stat check: Longhorns 2014 commitments 

September, 2, 2013
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Here is a look at how each one of Texas’ 2014 commitments faired this week:

Derick Roberson
Max Olson/ESPNDefensive end Derick Roberson helped Brennan shut out San Antonio Holmes 52-0 on Friday.
• ESPN 300 defensive end Derick Roberson (San Antonio, Texas/Brennan), the No. 8 DE in the country, helped Brennan shut out San Antonio Holmes 52-0 on Friday.

• ESPN 300 wide receiver Armanti Foreman (Texas City, Texas/Texas City) caught three passes for 62 yards and a 44-yard touchdown in a 48-0 win over Dickinson.

• ESPN 300 quarterback Jerrod Heard (Denton, Texas/Guyer) completed 12 of 18 passes for 179 yards and two interceptions and rushed 18 times for 103 yards in a 38-28 loss to Cedar Hill (Texas).

• ESPN 300 cornerback Jermaine Roberts (New Orleans/Saint Augustine) helped the Purple Knights defense hold Amite to six points in a 35-6 victory on Saturday.

• ESPN 300 outside linebacker Otaro Alaka and Houston/Cypress Falls lost to Conroe (Texas) Oak Ridge, 37-16.


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Welcome to The Heard, HornsNation’s weekly in-depth look inside the never-ending world of Longhorns recruiting with news, notes and interesting tidbits on the latest happenings around the program. We’ll release this every Friday.

Talk about it in our forum and, if there’s a recruit out there you’d like to hear more from, let us know.

In this week’s edition of The Heard:

  • Texas Stampede visitors list

To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

Welcome to The Heard, HornsNation’s weekly in-depth look inside the never-ending world of Longhorns recruiting with news, notes and interesting tidbits on the latest happenings around the program. We’ll release this every Friday.

Talk about it in our forum and, if there’s a recruit out there you’d like to hear more from, let us know.

In this week’s edition of The Heard:

  • Texas still No. 1 for Jefferson?
  • Adams clears things up
  • Leonard content with commitment
  • Stidham talks Bama, recruiting process
  • UT in top two for ESPN 300 DT
  • 2014 DT hopes for UT offer
  • UTEP safety commitment loves UT
  • RB will give Texas a chance

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Thursday’s commitments from ESPN 300 wide receiver Armanti Foreman (Texas City, Texas/Texas High) and brother D'Onta Foreman gave the Longhorns 21 commitments in 2014, leaving them just a few more spots to fill.
Here are a look at five positions of need that could help Texas put a bow on this class.


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Texas commitment Derick Roberson (San Antonio/Brennan), an ESPN 300 defensive end, has a way of keeping Longhorns fans on their toes.

Derick Roberson
Max Olson/ESPNDefensive end Derick Roberson still has his sights set on Texas.
Roberson is pretty reserved when it comes to talking to the media, and even Texas’ coaches at times, according to his father, Erick Roberson. But he has no trouble expressing himself through Twitter.

His handle -- @DerickJRoberson -- has given Longhorns fans plenty of reason to wonder about the stability of his commitment, which he made on Aug. 2, 2012.


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AUSTIN, Texas -- Dallas Skyline defensive end Victor Evans took the field at Texas’ camp on Sunday knowing he already had an offer, but that wasn’t good enough. He needed to prove he deserved one.

He’d heard he was undersized at 6-foot-3 and 228 pounds. Actually, he’d heard he simply wasn’t good enough to merit a Texas offer.


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KELLER, Texas -- As far as package deals go, they don’t get much better than the one Texas landed Thursday night.

As expected, brothers Sione Teuhema and Maea Teuhema gave their verbal pledges to the Longhorns following Keller (Texas) High School’s spring game.

Following the game, the two brothers kept things modest for their big announcement: Maea grabbed a black Texas tee out of a bag, Sione grabbed a white one and they grinned as they held them up.

Maea Teuhema, Sione Teuhema
Max Olson/ESPNMaea Teuhema (left) and Sione Teuhema both committed to the Longhorns on Thursday.
“It feels good to be a Longhorn,” Maea Teuhema said.

Sione, a 2014 defensive end, becomes the 14th member of Texas’ No. 2-ranked recruiting class. His younger brother, coveted offensive tackle Maea, becomes one of the cornerstone pieces of the Longhorns’ 2015 class and its fourth verbal pledge.

“It’s close to home – not too far and not too close,” Sione Teuhema said. “And we love the school and it was a good experience. We agreed on Texas. LSU was too far. For me, the first time I visited there, I just fell in love with Texas.”

This commitment has seemed almost inevitable since the day the Teuhemas set foot on the Texas campus on March 23 and were taken immediately into coach Mack Brown’s office to receive scholarship offers.

Ever since, the Longhorns appeared to be the leaders to land the impressive duo. Texas coaches told Sione he reminds them of former UT All-American Brian Orakpo, and they viewed Maea as one of the state’s best sophomore prospects.

"The biggest thing is it feels like home," their guardian, Robert Taliaferro, said. "It really did to me and to them. We loved the defensive ends coach, and we loved the offensive line coach. And at the end of the day, if the NFL doesn't work out, they want to get a job and live in Texas."

But the Teuhemas did their research before reaching this decision, including visits to LSU, Texas A&M, Oklahoma and several other programs. Alabama also made a strong late push, though the brothers were unable to visit Tuscaloosa.

According to Taliaferro, the decision was tougher than expected at one point this spring.

"I thought we were going to LSU, I really did," he said. "It was dadgum close to being LSU, done deal, and we almost committed that day while we were down there. It was that strong of an impression. But when they got home and realized just how far it was, they went back to Texas again and started talking about how much Texas felt like home."

Sione came to Taliaferro nearly two weeks ago and asked what he'd think if they chose Texas. One day later, he took it a step further.

"He said, 'We pick Texas,' " Taliaferro said. "I talked to Maea alone and asked if he was on board with this, and he said yeah. He said, 'Actually, we decided Texas a long time ago. We just weren't telling you to mess with you.' "

The duo wanted to hold off on announcing so more Keller teammates could get noticed by recruiters during their spring practices.

According to Taliaferro, this commitment completely ends their recruitment. Maea, a 6-foot-4, 344-pound offensive tackle, will be a Longhorn no matter what, even if he doesn’t sign his letter of intent for another 20 months.

"We've turned down LSU and Alabama," Taliaferro said. "Who else is going to win us over?"

That was the plan all along. The brothers would not split up and play at different schools, and college recruiters obliged that plan by offering both brothers.

Sione, a 6-3, 211-pound speed rushing end, and his brother also held offers from Baylor, Oklahoma State, Oregon State, TCU, Utah and Washington State.

He’s the third defensive end in this Texas class, joining top commit Derick Roberson (San Antonio/Brennan) and Jake McMillon (Abilene, Texas/Abilene).

Maea becomes the second offensive lineman in Texas’ 2015 class, joining Sherman (Texas) guard Aaron Garza.
To say Victor Evans (Dallas/Skyline) is ecstatic about his new Longhorns offer would be a vast understatement. Words can’t really describe how excited he was to pick up the offer on Friday.

“My head coach is down at Austin for the track meet and he talked to the coaches. They told him I had an offer,” Evans said. “I was pretty much overwhelmed by the whole situation. I still am overwhelmed by the whole situation. I’m blessed to have what I have.”


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