It’s here. The wait is over. National signing day is Wednesday and there are plenty of stories to watch.
What’s in it for Texas?
The Big Three: Texas is anxiously awaiting the decisions of three players. Westlake offensive lineman Stephan Zabie, Galena Park North Shore defensive end K’Lavon Chaisson and Winter Park, Fla. wide receiver Jordan Pouncey are all set to announce on signing day. The other 16 members of the class will send in their letters of intent throughout the day.
Chaisson is the big fish. The four-star defensive end is the top remaining target in the state along with Bellaire Episcopal defensive tackle Marvin Wilson. Chaisson is a pass-rushing specialist known for big plays in big games. He’s an ideal fit for Texas defensive coordinator Todd Orlando’s 3-4 scheme.
Chaisson decides at 11 a.m. between Texas and LSU.
Pouncey will announce his commitment through a video on Twitter at 12:15 p.m. A Florida native, Pouncey declared Texas as one of his leaders after his official visit to Austin a few weeks ago. He grew up a Longhorns fan after watching Vince Young lead Texas to a national championship. The 6-2 wide receiver would be an important piece to the 2017 recruiting class. The three-star can play outside receiver or in the slot.
Zabie might be the least known to Texas fans outside of Austin, but he might have the most upside of any player in the state. The four-star tackle missed his sophomore and senior seasons but has picked up offers from schools like Texas, UCLA, Ole Miss and Oklahoma despite having played only 16 varsity games.
Zabie defines potential and will decide at 7:30 a.m. on ESPNU along with Westlake teammate Levi Jones.
The commitments: Texas enters signing day with 16 commitments. Three of those players — quarterback Sam Ehlinger, running back Toneil Carter and junior college kicker Joshua Rowland — are already on campus and won’t do a Wednesday ceremony. That leaves 13 commitments to sign their letters before officially becoming members of the football program.
Running back Daniel Young (Langham Creek), wide receiver Damion Miller (John Tyler), guard Derek Kerstetter (San Antonio Reagan), offensive tackle Samuel Cosmi (Atascocita), tight end Reese Leitao (Jenks, Okla.), tight end Cade Brewer (Lake Travis), defensive end Taquon Graham (Temple), defensive end Max Cummins (Fort Worth All Saints), inside linebacker Marqez Bimage (Brenham), cornerback Kobe Boyce (Lake Dallas), cornerback Josh Thompson (Nacogdoches), athlete Montrell Estell (Hooks) and inside linebacker Gary Johnson (Dodge City C.C.) will fax their letters of intent throughout the day.
We’ll have a breakdown of each incoming Longhorn as Texas receives the fax.
I will be signing wednesday Feb 1 at Lake Dallas high school in the auditorium at 9am everyone is invited 📝🐂
— Kobe Boyce (@KobeBoyce) January 29, 2017
Entering signing day, Texas’ class ranked No. 25 in the country and second in the Big 12. Some of that is based on size. Only two of the 24 teams ranked higher than Texas — No. 11 Stanford and No. 13 Clemson — have fewer commitments. The number of players currently on the UT roster meant Herman’s staff could sign only around 20 players. Expect Texas to climb toward the top 10 if the Longhorns get the signatures from Chaisson, Pouncey and Zabie.
The state of Texas: 247Sports’ composite rankings list Wilson as the top player in the country. A five-star defensive tackle, Wilson has been a household name in recruiting circles for years. At 6-4 and 329 pounds, he’s an impact player as a three- or one-technique. The American-Statesman’s Fabulous 55’s No. 3-ranked player decides at 3:30 p.m. He’s favored to pick LSU.
— HEAD HUNCHO💧 (@marvinwilson21) January 31, 2017
Chevin Calloway, once a high-priority target for Herman’s staff, also will announce on ESPNU. The four-star cornerback will announce at 10 a.m. with Arkansas being the heavy favorite. Damion Daniels, a defensive tackle from Dallas Bishop Dunne, will announce at the same time. A teammate of Calloway’s, Daniels is expected to pick Nebraska over Oklahoma State.