Keondre Coburn agonized over his decision for a month. The long-time Texas commit was one of two commitments who didn’t utilize the early signing period on Dec. 20. The 4-star defensive tackle from Spring Westfield waited and watched. He took visits. He listened to coaches. He prayed.
Then he signed his national letter of intent to Texas on Wednesday, officially making the No. 9 player on the Fabulous 55 a future Longhorn. The 6-foot-1, 330-pound defensive tackle will play nose guard at Texas and hopes to replace Poona Ford as the anchor of Texas’ defense for years to come.
— Texas Football (@TexasFootball) February 7, 2018
“Poona leaving gives me an opportunity to play early. To start early and really make an impact as a freshman,” Coburn said at his signing ceremony Wednesday morning. “It is a great opportunity to showcase my talents early.”
TCU and Miami made a real push for Coburn. In the end, he couldn’t divorce from a recruiting class he helped shape. A bulk of the top talent in Texas’ 2018 recruiting class hails from the Houston-area and Coburn was one of the leaders of the group, pushing prospects toward the Texas program and Tom Herman.
“I helped bring the recruiting class to Texas, so I couldn’t just leave those guys,” he said. “I’m about loyalty and I would’ve felt bad if I abandoned the mission. It wouldn’t have felt right to go anywhere else.”
That doesn’t mean the decision was easy.
“It is amazing to get the process over with because it was stressful. I wasn’t sleeping well at night and it was hard to process because so many people were coming at me from all different directions,” Coburn said. “I feel stress-free right now.”
The Longhorns didn’t sign a single defensive lineman in the early period. It was the only concern for an otherwise stacked class for Tom Herman and his staff. The only other commitment who didn’t sign – running back Keaontay Ingram – signed his letter of intent Wednesday morning. He would’ve signed early if Carthage wasn’t playing for a state title the same week as the December period.
Texas answered the questions at defensive line. The Longhorns held onto Coburn, added defensive tackle Moro Ojomo and a pair of out-of-state defensive ends in Daniel Carson and Mike Williams. All four of those players signed national letters of intent Wednesday, locking each into a future at Texas.
The last remaining piece is Conroe Oak Ridge defensive end, Joseph Ossai, who is due to announce his decision and sign by 11 a.m. on Wednesday.
2018 Texas Longhorns signing classHere's a look at the recruits who signed with Texas for the 2018 recruiting cycle. Star rankings from 247Sports composite.
|Byron Hobbs||LB||Ft. Worth Eastern Hills||3||Signed|
|Casey Thompson||QB||Southmoore (Okla.)||4||Signed|
|Cameron Rising||QB||Newbury Park (Calif.)||4||Signed|
|Cameron Dicker||K||Lake Travis||3||Signed|
|Caden Sterns||S||Cibolo Steele||4||Signed|
|Ayodele Adeoye||LB||IMG Academy (Fla.)||4||Signed|
|Al'Vonte Woodard||WR||Houston Lamar||4||Signed|
|Jalen Green||CB||Houston Heights||4||Signed|
|Brennan Eagles||WR||Alief Taylor||4||Signed|
|Anthony Cook||CB||Houston Lamar||4||Signed|
|D'Shawn Jamison||CB||Houston Lamar||4||Signed|
|Malcolm Epps||TE||Spring Dekaney||4||Signed|
|Junior Angilau||OT||Salt Lake East (Utah)||4||Signed|
|Mikey Grandy||OT||College of San Mateo (Calif.)||3||Signed|
|Ryan Bujcevski||P||ProKick Austrailia||N/A||Signed|
|Keondre Coburn||DT||Spring Westfield||4||Signed|
|Daniel Carson||DE||William Chrisman (Mo.)||3||Signed|
|Michael Williams||DE||Dunham School (La.)||3||Signed|
|Christian Jones||OT||Cy Woods||3||Signed|
|Joseph Ossai||DE||Conroe Oak Ridge||4||Signed|