Texas Longhorns: A'Shawn Robinson

Texas recruits hanging with Longhorns 

September, 8, 2013
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Being the Joneses has its perks.

But when the Joneses can’t live up to their own way of living, things can go awry very quickly.

Manny Diaz found out just how quickly Sunday afternoon when he was relieved of his duties as Texas’ defensive coordinator not even 24 hours after the Longhorns gave up a school-record 550 rushing yards and 679 total yards to BYU in an embarrassing 40-21 loss in Provo, Utah.
AUSTIN, Texas -- Think back to national signing day in February.

As top recruits across the state sat down to sign their letters of intent and secure their futures, Daniel Gresham was sitting in a hallway outside his coach’s office at Fort Worth (Texas) All Saints.


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AUSTIN, Texas -- It might take some time perfecting the pronunciation of Trey Lealaimatafao. But, for the Longhorns, that’s something they’ll have plenty of time to work on.

Lealaimatafao, a 2014 defensive tackle from San Antonio Warren, tells HornsNation that he committed to the Longhorns on Saturday during the spring game.

“I just love the school. I just couldn’t wait, you know,” he said. “I spoke with all the commits like Jerrod Heard, Lorenzo Joe. We all talked about it. I talked about it with my parents and felt like that was the place to be.”

Lealaimatafao, who is 6-foot-2 and 301 pounds, was the second Class of 2014 recruit to commit to Texas on Saturday. Terrell Cuney (Jasper, Texas/Jasper) committed in the afternoon. The Longhorns now have 10 commitments in the class.

In Lealaimatafao, Texas is making progress toward revamping a depleted cupboard of interior linemen. Texas missed out on its top defensive tackle target in 2013 -- A’Shawn Robinson -- and ended up not signing a signing a single defensive tackle.

They picked up a commitment from 2015 DT Bryce English (DeSoto, Texas/DeSoto) on Friday.

Lealaimatafao also had offers from Arizona, Arizona State, Baylor, Houston, Iowa State, Missouri, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss, Oregon State, Texas State and Tulsa. He was carefully considering Ole Miss, Alabama and Oklahoma.

“I consider myself as a fast and explosive player who can really get off the ball,” he said. “I don’t quit. I do whatever I can to help my team win.”

Lealaimatafao actually grew up rooting for USC but the weekend’s festivities on the University of Texas proved to be reason enough for a change of heart.
Growing up, football was always Derick Roberson’s true love. Basketball was just a way to stay in shape and active in the offseason.

But that doesn’t make this weekend any less special. The Texas defensive end commit and his San Antonio (Texas) Brennan teammates are coming to Austin to play for the Class 4A state basketball title.


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Texas poised to take big 2014 class 

February, 14, 2013
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AUSTIN, Texas -- Texas A&M was the talk of the state in 2013 with its 32-man recruiting class. Don’t be shocked if Texas comes close to those numbers with its 2014 class.

As always, it’s a matter of math. Texas, by rule, can sign no more than 50 recruits in any two-year period. The Longhorns inked 15 this year, so 35 is the absolute maximum for 2014.

Texas isn’t going for 35 this year. Its 2013 team will feature 15 seniors if Jordan Hicks is granted his medical redshirt. A full class of 25 signees is likely. But don’t rule out the possibility of 30.


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AUSTIN, Texas -- Mack Brown refused to talk about the five recruits Texas didn't get on signing day.

But the Texas coach did have a message for players that might be interested in the Longhorns in the future.

[+] EnlargeMack Brown
Kevin Jairaj/US PresswireTexas coach Mack Brown stressed the quality of his 2013 class but was clearly disappointed in the five recruits who decommitted.
"The thing that we will do is we have allowed the kids to commit and still look around the last couple of years -- we're not doing that anymore," Brown said on Wednesday. “If you are committed to us be committed. If you're going to go look, we're going to go look."

It was a strong message and it permeated a signing day that dripped with disappointment over who Texas didn't get -- A'Shawn Robinson (Alabama), Daeshon Hall (Texas A&M), Ricky Seals-Jones (Texas A&M), Durham Smythe (Notre Dame) and Kyle Hicks (TCU) -- as much as the day was held up and celebrated for the 15 players Texas did get.

"What we found is the 15 [recruits] that we got are very passionate about being at Texas and that is what we want," Brown said. "And very honestly if a young person tells you they're coming and their parents tell you they're coming and then they don't, you wouldn't want them to be here.

"You may be disappointed on the day it happened but you want people that will look you in the eye and tell you the truth and you want people who want to be at your school.”

This signing day Texas didn't need that many people at its school. It only had room for about 16. So the search was for quality over quantity. Brown, who because of all the decommitments and misses seemingly has gone from coach February to Father Time with this class, tried to hammer that point home repeatedly.

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AUSTIN, Texas -- When the Longhorns began to recruit ESPN 300 lineman Andrew Billings (Waco, Texas/Waco) as a defensive lineman, his preferred position, rather than at offensive lineman, where they originally sought him, they seemed to have put themselves in position to garner his commitment, which he announced today.

“Oh, they probably went to third in the bunch to ... they went up from third, I’ll tell you that much,” Waco High coach Marty Herbst said a few weeks ago.


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Have a rough weekend? Chances are decent that Texas' was worse.

You saw the biggest news on the blog Friday night. The Longhorns released a statement that recently promoted co-offensive coordinator Major Applewhite engaged in a one-time "inappropriate relationship" with a student while the team was on a trip to the 2009 Fiesta Bowl.

That news came in the wake of former track coach Bev Kearney's January resignation disclosing to the Austin American-Statesman that she had an intimate consensual relationship with a student. Kearney had been placed on administrative leave for several months prior to her resignation, and a potential lawsuit from Kearney reportedly led to the Longhorns dropping the news late Friday night before the Super Bowl.

The university regents met for two hours on Sunday via conference call and announced that they'll be reviewing all policies regarding inappropriate relationships between students and employees.

We'll see how serious the fallout from that news becomes, though it's highly unlikely Applewhite would face additional punishment. Regents did not hand down any more punishment for Applewhite. On Saturday morning, news broke that freshman quarterback Connor Brewer had been arrested on minor in possession of alcohol and public intoxication charges by the University of Texas police.

Coach Mack Brown released a statement saying he was "disappointed" and would hand down punishment later on.

"We've talked with his family and will continue to monitor the situation. Following the completion of the legal process, we will do what's best for the University, Connor and the team," Brown said in the statement.

Brewer redshirted in 2012 and didn't play a snap.

The final piece of Texas' nightmare weekend became official on Sunday, when one of the Longhorns' top commits, defensive tackle A'Shawn Robinson, told our HornsNation that he'd be reneging on his yearlong commitment. Reports swirled for weeks that Robinson was wavering, and other reports surfaced that Robinson would be signing with Alabama. He disputed those reports, though Alabama visited him on campus last week. Robinson, the nation's No. 105 overall prospect, was clear that Texas was out. The Fort Worth, Texas, native is the nation's No. 11 defensive tackle and checks in 6-foot-5 and 304 pounds.

That's quite the triple play of very bad news for the Longhorns, who haven't had much to celebrate since winning the 2009 Big 12 title and advancing to the national title game. Texas is coming off a dramatic Alamo Bowl win over Oregon State, but the news this weekend could have impact for years to come.

What losing Robinson means for Texas 

February, 3, 2013
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A’Shawn Robinson will not be a Longhorn. The crater that loss leaves in Texas’ already small 2013 recruiting class is an unmistakeable one.

The ESPN 150 defensive tackle’s decision to back out of his pledge during an in-home visit on Saturday ensures this Texas class will be noted not for who is in it, but for who isn’t.


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ESPN 150 DT decommits from Texas 

February, 3, 2013
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Texas' 2013 recruiting class had already suffered four decommitments. Just four days before signing day, the Longhorns suffered another one that was more stunning than the rest.


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DT A'Shawn Robinson talks Texas visit 

January, 27, 2013
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After taking official visits to three other schools, A’Shawn Robinson gave Texas one final visit this weekend to ensure he was making the right decision.

The ESPN 150 has been committed to Texas since February. He’s been on campus for junior day, camp and multiple home games. How did this trip stack up?


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Signing day primer: Texas

January, 23, 2013
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Team needs: Texas hit the recruiting trail this year seeking improved depth on the offensive line and at linebacker. Its line got almost no production from backups in 2012, and an inexperienced linebacker group started six players last season and endured struggles throughout. With only nine seniors in 2012, the Longhorns don’t have many other holes that need to be filled by this class of recruits. The most irreplaceable cogs are safety Kenny Vaccaro and defensive end Alex Okafor. Both are potential first-round NFL draft picks whose production will be tough to match.

Help is on the way: The offensive line questions have been answered. Texas is set to sign one of the nation’s best classes up front with five commits, including No. 1 center Darius James (Killeen, Texas/Harker Heights) and No. 4 tackle Kent Perkins (Dallas/Lake Highlands). Contra Costa (Calif.) College tackle Desmond Harrison joined the class this week. Texas also landed ESPN 300 outside linebacker Deoundrei Davis (Cypress, Texas/Cypress Woods), who enrolled early and should contribute as a freshman.

Other key commits: Two more early enrollees, ESPN 150 lineman Jake Raulerson (Celina, Texas/Celina) and Butte (Calif.) College tight end Geoff Swaim, should play right away. Texas also has pledges from ESPN 150 defensive tackle A’Shawn Robinson (Fort Worth, Texas/Arlington Heights), receiver Jacorey Warrick (Houston/Cypress Falls) and cornerback Antwuan Davis (Bastrop, Texas/Bastrop). The Longhorns will pair Warrick with Jake Oliver (Dallas/Jesuit), who broke the Texas state record for career receptions.

Other key targets: Holding on to Robinson is crucial. He has taken official visits to USC and Alabama and could make a late-second flip on signing day. With a pledge from Harrison, the biggest remaining priorities are finding another running back and wide receiver. ESPN 150 receiver Sebastian LaRue (Santa Monica, Calif./Santa Monica) and Ole Miss running back commit Peyton Barber (Alpharetta, Ga./Milton) could visit in January.

Roundtable: Predicting Texas' finish 

January, 18, 2013
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Every Friday, HornsNation recruiting writers William Wilkerson and Max Olson answer a question about the Longhorns.

This week's question: How do you predict Texas will finish out its 2013 class in the next few weeks?


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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 Thursday.

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

A few of the notes in today's The Heard:

  • Robinson ready to end process
  • In-home visit key for Harrison
  • Oliver values time at Army Bowl
  • The latest on Campbell
  • Would Hammad commit?
  • Perkins focused on one sport
  • 2014 DB gets junior day invite
  • Davis wouldn’t mind moving around
  • TCU commit will visit Texas
  • 2014 DB unsure of UT


Read The Heard after the jump.


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All-America game roundup: UT commits 

January, 7, 2013
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Texas was as well represented as ever in the nation’s biggest postseason all-star games this weekend. Of the Longhorns’ 13 verbal commits, nine were selected to suit up for one last game before beginning their college careers.

Seven went to the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio, though linebacker Deoundrei Davis didn’t play due to his torn ACL. Top-ranked commit Darius James shined at the Under Armour All-America Game in St. Petersburg, Fla., and his high school teammate Naashon Hughes went to the Semper Fidelis All-America Game in Los Angeles.

Here’s a rundown of how the future Longhorns looked in their respective games:

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