SAN ANTONIO – It was a quiet day for Texas players Saturday despite accounting for more than 10 percent of the Army All-American Bowl roster.
The Lone Star state was represented by 12 players — all on the West team, which lost to the East 27-17.
TCU commitment Omar Manning didn’t play after suffering an injury in practice Tuesday. La Grange running back JK Dobbins, an Ohio State pledge, sat out because of an injury suffered during his senior season.
That left 10 players to compete. Wylie East running back Eno Benjamin made the biggest impact. He led the West with 24 rushing yards in the first half. He also added a catch for 11 yards. His day ended with a leg injury in the second quarter. It was a quiet day for the West offense, scoring just three points in the first half and trailing 17-3 at halftime.
The West offensive line was led by an impressive trio of Texans. Derek Kerstetter, the lone Longhorns commitment in the contest, acquitted himself nicely when playing right guard. The three-star lineman made a strong case to move up recruiting rankings and finish with a fourth star. He was a bully at the point of attack, showed strong technique in pass coverage and had the versatility to play center. Kerstetter was a left tackle at Reagan High School in San Antonio.
Walker Little, the top-ranked offensive lineman in the state, started at right tackle next to Kerstetter. Little also played some guard during the game. The recent Stanford pledge is a five-star prospect, and he showed why all week at practice and in the game. His athleticism is impressive for a prospect of that size. Chuck Filiaga, who committed to Michigan during the game, also played for the West. The Aledo prospect is a member of the American-Statesman’s Fab 55.
Shawn Robinson, who has committed to TCU, played quarterback with mixed results. His athleticism is unquestioned. He led DeSoto to its first state title last month, but he’s still inconsistent as a passer. He threw an interception in the fourth quarter when a pass slipped out of his hand and landed in the arms of an East defensive lineman.
Kennedale linebacker Baron Browning was recently named the top player in the Fab 55. The Ohio State pledge had a quiet outing. The all-star rules aren’t friendly for linebackers. Defenses must line up exclusively in a 4-3 with no blitzing or pre-snap movement. He recorded just one tackle in the first half before adding a few more in the final two quarters. Defensive back Jeffrey Okudah, the Fab 55’s No. 2 player, committed to Ohio State during the game and played well at cornerback before a second-quarter injury.
Northwestern commitment Earnest Brown, a Fab 55 member out of Denton, recorded a sack in the first half. Jayden Peevy, a Texas A&M pledge, also contributed along the West’s defensive line. Oklahoma-bound Robert Barnes was a member of the West secondary, which struggled against the speed of the East wide receivers.