The Texas Longhorns have seen some major changes since Mack Brown’s departure and Charlie Strong’s takeover as head coach. One thing that has not changed is UT’s recruiting of speed. Sure, everyone says “there’s more speed in Texas” and all the kids down there run track. However, there are plenty of football programs in and around Texas that have not recruited speed like the Longhorns (Baylor and A&M have been hoarding speed lately) or had the sustained success the Longhorns have enjoyed. Certainly, Longhorn football has suffered a few disappointing seasons recently but their recruiting of fast players has not. There might not be a Jamaal Charles or Marquise Goodwin in the 2014 class, but I’d say there are quite a few recruits with track & field marks that quantify their speed.
The Texas 2014 recruiting class included 23 recruits and eight of those recruits have specific track and field marks which typically transfer well to the football field.
1. Roderick Bernard, WR, 10.81/100 meters; 21.78/200 meters
2. John Bonney, DB, 4×200 relay (1:28.00); 4×100 relay (42.91); 4×400 relay (3:18.15); 22.52/200 meters…maybe not great individual sprint times but the 4×2 relay indicates he has a burst.
3. Donald Catalon, RB, 4×100 relay (42.24)…this is exactly what you look for in RB in terms of speed good burst from 400 relay or individual 55, 60, 100 meter sprint.
4. Armanti Foreman, WR, 11.14/100 meters; 22.90/200 meters; 4×100 relay (41.99)…again not great individual times but shows a real burst in 400 relay. It doesn’t hurt that Foreman played basketball too.
5. D’Onta Foreman, RB, 21.76/200 meters; 4×100 relay (41.99).. 200-meter time was impressive given his listed weight of 210lbs and he played basketball as well.
6. Garrett Gray, WR, 4×100 relay (43.39)…was also a triple jumper and accomplished basketball player, his height 6’04” doesn’t hurt either.
7. Lorenzo Joe, WR, 22.22/200 meters; 48.80/400 meters; 4×100 relay (42.28)…has short speed and long speed as evidenced by his 400 meter ability. Also a basketball player and listed at 6’02”.
8. Jerrod Heard, QB, 4×100 relay (42.54); 4×200 relay (1:27.65)…it could be argued that Heard is the best all-around athlete in the recruiting class. He also played basketball and at 6’02” / 200lbs is an exciting QB prospect and athlete.
9. Kevin Shorter, RB, 11.03/100 meters; 4×100 relay (41.98); 4×200 relay (1:27.27); 22’11” long jump and 44’07” triple jump…Shorter’s football career was unfortunately cut short due to injury.
It should be noted that of the 23 recruits, 18 of them participated in at least one other sport in high school. Twelve recruits participated in high school basketball while 13 participated in track & field. Not a lot of great throwers to highlight in this class but highly regarded DT recruit, Poona Ford, was a shot put state qualifier in South Carolina. Blake Whiteley, a Texas tight end recruit, from West Vancouver HS, British Columbia, participated in high school basketball, baseball, soccer and rugby…wow!! That’s an interesting athletic combination.