Texas Longhorns: NFL draft

AUSTIN, Texas -- The deepest position on the Texas roster took a hit as defensive tackle Brandon Moore announced his intent to enter the NFL draft on Friday.

"I want to thank coach [Mack] Brown, [defensive line] coach [Bo] Davis and everyone at Texas," Moore said in a statement. "I enjoyed my time and really appreciate the opportunity I had to play for the Longhorns, but my life-long dream has been to play in the NFL and to have a chance to support my family. I'll definitely miss everyone at Texas and will always pull for the Longhorns, but I'm ready to put all of my energy into preparing for my future and getting ready to work out for NFL scouts."

The transfer from East Mississippi Community College started five games and had eight tackles for loss, two sacks and six quarterback pressure in his only season at Texas.

If there were a position Texas could afford to lose a player it was defensive tackle. The Longhorns used a five-man rotation last season and, prior to Moore’s declaration, were set to have all five players back. Moore’s departure should clear more room for rising sophomore Malcom Brown.

Brown’s playing time steadily increased throughout the year and it became clear he would be become and impact player in his sophomore season. Ashton Dorsey, Chris Whaley and Desmond Jackson will all vie for the starting spot opposite Brown.

While those four should garner most of the minutes, Paul Boyette Jr. may now have the opportunity to become part of the rotation. Boyette redshirted in 2012.

Overall the Texas defense will lose three starters from what was the worst defense in school history. Defensive end Alex Okafor and safety Kenny Vaccaro are expected to be selected within the first two rounds. Because of his potential and size (6-5, 320) Moore could also grab a spot in the first three rounds.

Acho to Browns; Randall to Dolphins

April, 28, 2012
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The long wait for linebacker Emmanuel Acho and defensive tackle Kheeston Randall is finally over.

Acho was picked by the Cleveland Browns in the sixth round with the 204th overall selection, and Randall went to the Miami Dolphins 11 picks later in the seventh.

Acho, a 6-foot-1, 238-pound senior, projects as an inside linebacker in the Browns' 4-3 defense. He'll get a chance to back up middle linebacker D'Qwell Jackson, a six-year veteran who led the team in tackles last season.

The Dallas native earned All-Big 12 honors as senior after leading Texas with 131 total tackles (19 for loss). He recorded only three sacks, though, and ESPN NFL draft expert Mel Kiper Jr. said that hurt his stock in the draft.

"He's strong, quick and very experienced," Kiper said. "Think about what he did at Texas during his career -- he put up numbers. The only problem is, not a lot of impact plays. ... Too many games, I thought, where he wasn't dominant as his numbers and physical talent suggest he should've been."

Kiper said he felt Acho had the physical talent of a potential second- or third-round draft but lacked consistency on the field.

"He's a gifted athlete," Kiper said. "You thought he would be more dominant game-to-game. He wasn't."

The 6-foot-4, 293-pound Randall, a native of Beaumont, started 35 games at Texas. He was a second-team All-Big 12 selection after recording 34 tackles (five for loss) this season.
ESPN's Todd McShay said one glaring flaw was to blame for Randall slipping to the seventh round.

"When he gets a gap and has an opportunity, he can absolutely disrupt in the backfield, penetrate, make a lot of plays," McShay said. "But the thing is, he doesn’t make many plays in the passing game. He disappears. He only had four sacks in three years as a starter."

The selections of Acho, Randall and fourth-rounder Keenan Robinson may be all Texas has to show for the 2012 NFL Draft. Unless running back Fozzy Whittaker is drafted in the seventh round, this will be the fewest Longhorns selected in a draft since three went in 2005.

Board Meeting: April 26, 2012 

April, 26, 2012
4/26/12
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Welcome to your daily Board Meeting. Each evening we’ll update you on the day’s hottest topics on the HornsNation forum.

1. Nick Foles on not playing for Texas : Arizona QB Nick Foles was on Jon Gruden’s QB camp talking about not going to Texas. And Longhorns fans might not want to think too much about the QBs taken in this weekend’s NFL draft. Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III and Ryan Tannehill could all go in the first round. All are Texans and, of course, none wore the burnt orange.
Hindsight is 20/20 and nowhere is that more true than recruiting, but it does make the point that the Lone Star State is producing elite QB, just none of the recent players have been Longhorns.

Unlikely source for NFL starters 

April, 26, 2012
4/26/12
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College football insider Brad Edwards crunched the NFL draft numbers and waded through the approximately 250 players who are selected each year to find out which schools are producing the most talent.

The emphasis, as you've probably noticed, is on the first 20 to 30 picks.

That's when the big names -- the players believed to be future faces of franchises -- are all taken. Of course, there are also a few players with first-round talent who slide into the second round, and a lot of fans still watch this part of the draft with interest, hoping their team will scoop one up and perhaps steal the next Drew Brees or Maurice Jones-Drew.

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Carter Strickland on The Adams Theory

April, 25, 2012
4/25/12
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Carter Strickland joined Sean Adams and Chance Mock on The Adams Theory Tuesday to talk about the upcoming NFL draft and looked at why so few Texas players have been drafted recently.

Listen to the full interview here Listen.

Catch The Adams Theory every weekday from 1-4 p.m. CT on 104.9 ESPN Austin.

Board Meeting: April 24, 2012 

April, 24, 2012
4/24/12
7:30
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Welcome to your daily Board Meeting. Each evening we’ll update you on the day’s hottest topics on the HornsNation forum.

1. NFL draft -- Texas: Carter Strickland crunched the numbers regarding the dearth of Longhorns selected in recent NFL drafts. The Longhorns might not have an offensive player drafted and will surely wait until late Friday to have anyone taken at all.

It comes down to development. Recruiting hasn’t dried up and neither has the ample exposure that helps get players known. It’s the same problem plaguing the current Texas teams. Too many misses and players who were not coached well enough or did not live up to their potential.

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Three Deep: Draft renewing rivalry?

March, 30, 2012
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1. A renewed rivalry, sort of?: By all accounts Texas A&M QB Ryan Tannehill had an impressive performance at his pro day Thursday. ESPN.com’s Jamison Hensley reported that a large contingent from the Cleveland Browns were on hand. Perhaps the A&M-Texas rivalry will live on in Browns training camp.

The Browns would have likely drafted Baylor’s Robert Griffen III before the Redskins moved up via trade with the Rams to take RG3. There’s certainly no guarantee that the Browns would take Tannehill with the No. 4 pick. It’s certainly a reach for a player who has more time at receiver than QB. If the Browns do take him, it will set up a camp competition with former Longhorn Colt McCoy.

McCoy suffered a nasty his from the Steelers’ James Harrison and a concussion. McCoy did not play the rest of the season. He has only been in Cleveland for two seasons and came in with high marks from GM Mike Holmgren. McCoy was 2-2 in his career against the Aggies.

2. Drawing the line: Donald Hawkins is one of the more intriguing players to watch in Sunday’s spring game. The junior college transfer arrived at Texas with what some called a bit of an ego. He also proved his ability pretty quickly. To walk in and immediately move into the starting left tackle is no easy task. But if he is as good as advertised, he should solidify the Texas offensive line. There was a pretty steady rotation of players in and out last fall.

Hawkins, guard Mason Walters and center Dominic Espinosa are three solid starters. That leaves some combination of Trey Hopkins, Sedrick Flowers and Josh Cochran in the other two spots. Having a consistent group should only further build David Ash’s confidence.

3. A replacement for Coach G?: The Associated Press reports that North Texas women’s basketball coach Karen Aston has interviewed to the vacant job at Texas. Aston is a former Texas assistant who has coached at Charlotte and North Texas since leaving the Longhorns in 2006.

The report cites Aston as a top recruiter for the Longhorns during her tenure from 1998-2006.

Gail Goestenkors resigned from Texas on March 20.
AUSTIN, Texas -- Despite it all, Fozzy Whittaker has never lost hope that he’ll play in the NFL someday.

When his right knee buckled, his ACL and MCL tore and his Texas career came to an all-too-abrupt ending last November against Missouri, Whittaker didn’t dwell on the damage it might do to his pro dreams.

Sure, the Longhorns’ senior tailback will admit he’s been on a roller coaster ride of emotions ever since then. At Texas’ pro day on Tuesday, though, Whittaker was all smiles.

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Four Longhorns invited to NFL combine

February, 7, 2012
2/07/12
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Four Longhorns have been invited to the NFL scouting combine.

Linebackers Emmanuel Acho and Keenan Robinson, defensive tackle Kheeston Randall and running back Fozzy Whittaker are invited to the event held on Feb. 22-28 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.

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