The eyes of the nation were on Austin Saturday night when the Longhorns battled LSU in a high-scoring 45-38 loss. ESPN’s “College GameDay” was in town. Austin’s own mascot, Matthew McConaughey, nearly took off Lee Corso’s literal head while removing his figurative one, and the Undertaker made a classic appearance. The stars were out, including the best young players in high school football.
The demand for a game pass was so high that the Longhorns started turning down targets late in the week. The dozens who were awarded a seat to the game soaked in the atmosphere of Royal-Memorial Stadium and watched two of the premier programs in the country battle each other. Despite the loss, Texas won on the recruiting trail.
The most obvious example was four-star athlete Ja’Tavion Sanders pledging to Texas’ 2021 class on Saturday. The Denton Ryan product became the cycle’s eighth commitment in a class that ranks second in the nation. Sanders is a two-way star, playing tight end and defensive end for Ryan. He’ll likely play defense at Texas, giving assistant coach Oscar Giles another recruiting DFW victory.
The ringleader of the 2021 class is Katy Tompkins quarterback Jalen Milroe. The 6-1, 194-pound four-star is the third-ranked dual-threat quarterback in the country. He was among nearly two dozen UT commitments on campus for the game.
“It was a great experience,” Milroe said. “The atmosphere was electric. Texas wasn’t able to pull out the victory, but they showed a lot of fight.”
It was Milroe’s first game since committing in July. “I was able to talk to the players and coaches before the game,” he said. “The fans were excited for me, and treated me real well.”
Another 2021 commit in town was New Caney outside linebacker Derrick Harris Jr.
“It was a great experience and atmosphere. I can’t wait to get down there again, but I wish we would have won,” Harris said. “It was a good day. I had a lot of fun.”
One of Texas’ top targets in the 2021 class is Fort Worth All Saints Espicopal five-star offensive tackle Tommy Brockermeyer. The Texas legacy holds an offer from nearly every program in the country and is the No. 1-ranked offensive lineman in the cycle. He’s still recovering from offseason surgery, but he took in the game with his twin brother James, who is a center target for Texas in 2021.
“I had a great time,” Tommy Brockermeyer said. “Both teams fought extremely hard for the win, but LSU came out with the win.”
Recruiting no longer waits for players to develop into upperclassmen. The 2021 class is already gaining attention. A contender for the state’s top prospect in that cycle is Humble Atascocita offensive tackle Kam Dewberry. He attends the same high school that produced Samuel Cosmi, who starred for the Longhorns in the LSU loss.
“It was an experience I’ll never forget,” Dewberry said. “It was a great game and a great time.”