BEVO BEAT

The Texas 22: Starting at right guard — Jake McMillon

Posted August 19th, 2017

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We’re breaking down who we think will be Texas’ starting lineup, a combined effort from Mike Craven, Brian Davis and Danny Davis. We’re doing two a day, one offensive and one defensive player.

JAKE MCMILLON

Junior right guard, 6-3, 305

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High school: Abilene

Signing class: 2014

Career games: 22

Career starts: 5

Memorable games:

1. McMillon’s first career start came last year against Oklahoma State, at right guard. He helped the offense put up a season-high 568 yards, including a season-high 329 rushing yards.

2. He’ll leave Texas as a guard, but he started out as a Longhorn as a defensive lineman. He’s got three career tackles. Two of them came in one game — in 2015 against TCU.

3. McMillon’s versatility has been a real key for the offensive line. Last year he played two games at center when Zach Shackelford went down with an injury. Against the Cyclones he helped the offense put up 505 yards and 24 points in the second half in a Texas victory.

WHO HE WAS — BEFORE TEXAS

McMillon wasn’t a star signing in the 2014 class, Charlie Strong’s first at Texas. Back then he was a 6-3, 240-pound three-star prospect with only four reported offers. He committed to Texas in the spring semester of his junior year — on April Fool’s Day.

He wasn’t a class headliner, but he did have an outstanding high school career. McMillon was a four-year starter at Abilene, the first freshman to start on varsity there since the 1990s. He was an all-district selection as a defensive end his senior year, recording 43 tackles, four tackles for loss and a sack. He had 14 sacks as a junior.

UT offensive lineman Jake McMillon, left, and offensive lineman Zach Shackelford celebrate a touchdown in the second quarter against Notre Dame at Royal-Memorial Stadium on Sunday September 4, 2016. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN

WHO MCMILLON HAS BEEN HERE — SO FAR

McMillon made the switch from defensive line to offensive line during his redshirt freshman season of 2014. He made it into every game as a redshirt freshman in 2015, but was used mostly on special teams. He finished the year with three tackles.

It takes time for offensive linemen to adjust to the strength and athleticism of college defenses. It understandably took McMillon extra time because of the position change and the amount of weight he needed to gain.

It all started coming together for him as a sophomore in 2016. McMillon started five of the 10 games he played in, including wins over Baylor and Texas Tech. The offense put up historic numbers in the season with Shane Buechele setting freshman passing marks and D’Onta Foreman rushing for more than 2,000 yards.

WHO TEXAS NEEDS HIM TO BE THIS SEASON

You can make the argument that McMillon is the most versatile player on the Texas roster. Think about it. He’s played 22 career games and has played center, guard and tackle in a pinch over the last two years.

“Well he’s not underrated by me; I really like being around him,” coach Tom Herman said. “He is versatile, very much so, in terms of his ability to play center and guard; really smart guy, powerful, so he’s able to hold his own inside there with the Poona Fords of the world, and I don’t know that underrated is the right word, but certainly very versatile.”

McMillon is likely to be the team’s starting right guard, but he’s almost interchangeable with Zach Shackelford at center. If those two had to change positions for whatever reason, they likely could. McMillon is just a dependable, every-day player.

The Texas 22 — so far:

Offense:

QB Shane Buechele,

WR Armanti Foreman

WR Reggie Hemphill-Mapps

TE Andrew Beck

RG Jake McMillon

Defense:

DT Poona Ford

OLB Malik Jefferson

OLB Naashon Hughes

CB Kris Boyd

CB Holton Hill

S DeShon Elliott

The post The Texas 22: Starting at right guard — Jake McMillon appeared first on HookEm.

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