The Texas Longhorns flag flies in the end zone prior to kickoff against West Virginia at Royal-Memorial Stadium, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2016. (Stephen Spillman / for American-Statesman)

BEVO BEAT Football

Class of 2017: Destination Texas — Lake Travis’ Cade Brewer

Posted April 22nd, 2017

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RECENT HISTORY: TIGHT ENDS

Texas’ top tight ends

The Longhorns’ top-performing tight ends and freshmen tight ends over the past four years:

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2013: The top tight end — Greg Daniels (3 catches, 28 yards, no TDs); top freshman — Geoff Swaim (3 catches, 14 yards, no TDs)

2014: The top tight end — M.J. McFarland (11 catches, 53 yards, 2 TDs); top freshman — None

2015: The top tight end — Caleb Bluiett (8 catches, 167 yards, 2 TDs); top freshman — None
2016: The top tight end — Andrew Beck (4 catches, 82 yards, 2 TDs); top freshman — None

Freshmen on the field

It hasn’t been a productive few years for Texas in terms of recruiting tight ends; the position was not valued highly in the Charlie Strong era. But that may be changing; the Longhorns signed two in 2017, both considered to be more pass catchers than blockers.

RECENT SIGNINGS: TIGHT ENDS

The last seven tight ends Texas has signed. It includes one that’s playing in the NFL, another that transferred out, another that never made it to Austin, and another who very well may not ever make it to Austin. (We’re not including Caleb Bluiett, who was signed as a defensive tackle before moving to offense, or Garrett Gray, who’s a converted wide receiver, or Andrew Beck, who arrived at Texas as a linebacker. Numbers in parenthesis reflect that player’s star rating from 247Sports’ composite ratings:

2017: Cade Brewer, Lake Travis (3). A late addition to Texas’ signing class, Brewer was a former SMU commitment until Tom Herman, newly hired at UT, came calling. Brewer was a highly productive pass catcher in high school.

2017: Reese Leitao, Tulsa (Okla.) Jenks (3). Might have paired nicely with Brewer from a skill set point of view. And he still might. But a lingering legal problem has his status as a Longhorn in doubt.

2016: Peyton Aucoin, New Orleans Brother Martin (3). Had two career catches in high school, but was regarded as an extremely physical blocker. He redshirted last fall.

2015: Devonaire Clarington, Miami Washington (4). At 6-5, 238, he was a very intriguing signee. But he never made it to campus because of an ACT issue. UT moved on.

2014: Blake Whiteley, Arizona Western College (3). Never became a factor at Texas. Arrived as an early enrollee in the spring of 2014, but ended up redshirting that fall. He missed 2015 with an injury, didn’t catch a pass in 2016 and is no longer on the roster.

2013: Geoff Swaim, Butte College (3). A pair of rarities — a Longhorn actually drafted by the Cowboys (7th round, 2015) and a Longhorn tight end who’s actually playing in the NFL. He was a blocker, not a catcher, at Texas — 22 career starts, only 13 catches.

2011: M.J. McFarland, El Paso El Dorado (3). A star-crossed, hot-and-cold career. Redshirted in 2011, then had 8 catches for 125 yard and a touchdown in 2012, then didn’t make a single catch in 2013, then started four games in 2014 and had 11 catches for 53 yards and two touchdowns. Then, having already graduated, McFarland transferred early in 2015 to UTEP, back in his hometown of El Paso. He would have had one year of eligibility with UTEP, but he never played. He and the Miners parted ways when he failed a drug test — McFarland’s Twitter explanation was that he’d unintentionally taken a banned substance while trying to recover from a concussion that he suffered during spring football.

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