La Grange's J.K. Dobbins(22) celebrates a touchdown against Liberty Hill during their Class 4A high school football game at Leopard Stadium in La Grange Friday, Aug. 28, 2015. (Stephen Spillman for AMERICAN-STATESMAN)

BEVO BEAT Football

10 Texas 2017 recruiting targets to watch

Posted February 8th, 2016

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Recruiting season never ends, and while Texas landed a strong recruiting class in 2016, many fans will be expecting an even better one in 2017 (especially if the on-field product is better than, say, 5-7).

So who are the 10 recruits to watch next season for the Longhorns? Here we go (note, all these recruits have Texas offers):

10. The four players already committed to Texas

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We’re grouping these together because even though most of these recruits have been solid commitments for several months and most fans can count these eggs, it’s still worth following them. Especially if one of them, Sam Ehlinger of Westlake High School, could improve upon his No. 9-ranked national quarterback status by 247 sports. Ehlinger is a top recruit who could and should be even better as a senior than he was as a junior.

Even more more noteworthy than Ehlinger, though, is the already committed Lagaryonn Carson. Not only does he have a first name that rolls off the tongue, but he is the No. 2-rated strong-side defensive end in nation. Which means that if he has a strong summer camp season and fall actual season, Texas may be welcoming the top defensive end in the nation to campus.

Damion Miller (4-star wide receiver) and Major Tennison (3-star tight end, 10-star name) are also committed.

9. Levi Jones, linebacker, Westlake High School (Austin)

Jones is a 4-star prospect whose brother Cayleb is a projected high NFL draft pick and father played for the Dallas Cowboys. Jones is 6-foot-3-inches tall and 215 pounds, and Texas could always need linebackers. His high school quarterback is coming to Texas, his high school head coach played at Texas, and Charlie Strong could take an Uber ride (wait, can he?) to go recruit him.

8. William Poole, cornerback, Hapeville Charter (Atlanta)

He’s rated as the No. 10 cornerback prospect in the nation, and he’s an out-of-state player not even from Charlie Strong’s recruiting sweet spot of Florida. If he commits, maybe that’s a sign that Texas can start grabbing more top out-of-state players.

7. J.K. Dobbins, running back, La Grange High School (La Grange)

Dobbins is the best running back in the Central Texas region and has been a standout for two seasons. As a sophomore, Dobbins rushed for 2,243 yards and 37 touchdowns. As a junior, he rushed for 2,740 yards and 35 touchdowns in 11 games. He was a second team MaxPreps Junior All-American Team member. Dobbins is listed as the No. 4-rated all-purpose running back in the nation. It helps that Dobbins plays close to Austin as well.

6. Toneil Carter, running back, Langham Creek High School (Houston)

Dobbins is the No. 4-rated all-purpose back in the nation, but Carter is the No. 4-rated running back in the nation, the No. 41-ranked recruit in the nation and the No. 6-rated player in Texas. Right now, LSU and Texas A&M are the favorites, but as was the case with Erick Fowler and Brandon Jones, that means little.

5. Walker Little, offensive tackle Episcopal High School (Bellaire)

Little is the No. 24-rated tackle in the nation and is 6-foot-7-inches tall and 301 pounds. He is also from the same high school as a 5-star recruit further down on this list.

4. Derrick Tucker, safety,  Manvel High School (Manvel)

Listed as one of the top targets for Texas by 247sports, Tucker is the No. 4-rated safety in the nation. He hails from Manvel, where Texas plucked receiver Reggie Hemphill-Mapps in 2016. Tucker is being chased by TCU and LSU, but Texas appears to be the current leader, according to 247 Sports.

3. Jeffrey Okudah, safety,  South Grand Prairie High School (Grand Prairie)

Texas landed a very good safety in 2016 and is still targeting good ones in 2017. Okudah is the No. 1 safety in the nation and an in-state player. He’s a 5-star recruit, and despite all of 2016’s recruiting success, Texas didn’t land a consensus 5-star player in 2016. Okudah would change that. Texas is chasing Ohio State, Baylor and Stanford for Okudah.

2. Dylan Moses,  linebacker, IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)

Moses is the No. 1-rated outside linebacker in the 2016 class and the No. 1-rated overall player in the nation. He played at University High school in Baton Rouge, La., but transferred to the famed IMG Academy in Florida last month. He has offers from every top program in the nation, and LSU is the leader right now, followed by defending national champion Alabama. Texas assistant coach Chris Rumph is reportedly the primary recruiter on Moses, and his interest is getting a little hotter for Texas.

1. Marvin Wilson,  defensive tackle, Episcopal High School (Bellaire)

Yes, he’s not Moses, but Texas just landed about every defensive tackle it wanted in 2016. The Longhorns loaded up in the middle, and teams simply cannot have enough good defensive tackles. So Wilson is the the top-rated tackle in the nation, and the No. 5-rated prospect in the nation. Unlike Moses, Wilson is from Texas, and 247 Sports predicts that Texas is the leader for him. If the Longhorns can land the 6-foot-4-inch, 316 pound No. 1 prospect in the state of Texas, it could be the biggest get so far for Charlie Strong.

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