The Dotted Line

Stay updated on the latest Texas Longhorns recruiting news brought to you by Longhorns recruiting beat writer Mike Craven of Hookem.com. The Dotted Line will publish M-F at 10 a.m. each morning to provide Texas fans with an in-depth look at the latest for the Longhorns on the recruiting trail.

Humble Atascocita offensive tackle Kam Dewberry is a potential five-star prospect in the 2022 class. (Mike Craven)

Football

The Dotted Line: Texas’ offensive line recruiting must improve in 2022 after its 2021 failures

Posted October 28th, 2020

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Recruiting the offensive line in the 2021 cycle was an abject failure for the Longhorns and offensive line coach Herb Hand. Texas entered the cycle with high hopes because of a loaded crop of in-state prospects at tackle, guard and center, including a pair of twins with UT family ties in five-star tackle Tommy Brockermeyer and four-star center James Brockermeyer.

Texas commit Hayden Conner is a four-year varsity starter along the offensive line for Katy Taylor. (Mike Craven)

The cycle started with optimism when four-star tackle Hayden Conner picked Texas. His pledge was considered the first in what was sure to be many dominoes falling toward the Longhorns — at the time, Conner was in the mix, the Brockermeyers were supposed to eventually follow, leaving Hand and Tom Herman with the luxury of cherry-picking one or two more prospects to sign a banner unit.

Instead, Conner is the only four-star offensive lineman pledged to the Longhorns.

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Texas went out of state for three-star center Michael Myslinski and back to Houston for three-star tackle Max Merril. No Brockermeyers (Alabama). No Savion Byrd or Bryce Foster. No Reuben Fatheree (Texas A&M) or Donovan Jackson (Ohio State). Not even Jack Leyrer (Stanford) or Ryan Lengyel (Baylor). Each lineman had a Texas offer. Each has either pledged to another school or don’t have the Longhorns in their final mix.

Byrd and Foster remain uncommitted, but the Longhorns are not in the driver’s seat for either. It’s increasingly likely that Texas moves its priority to the 2022 cycle. That class already consists of a five-star quarterback in Quinn Ewers and four-star wide receiver Phaizon Wilson.

Hand and Herman hope a few of the in-state targets with offers join the group:

 

Kelvin Banks, OT, Humble Summer Creek

FYI: 6-5, 285; four stars; No. 6-ranked tackle 

Top offers: Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, Alabama, Texas (19 total)

Banks is the top-ranked tackle in Texas for 2022. He’s a tall, long offensive lineman with the athleticism to handle speed rushers on the edge. He’s added weight and strength as he’s matured physically and evolved into a dominant blocker. Banks is currently better at pass blocking than punishing defenders in the run game. He’s plenty big enough to carry more than 300 pounds after a year in a college weight room. 

Kam Dewberry, OT, Humble Atascocita 

FYI: 6-4, 313; four stars; No. 9-ranked tackle 

Top offers: Texas A&M, Texas, Oklahoma, LSU (30)

Dewberry emerged on the recruiting scene as a freshman when he earned the starting spot at left tackle for a playoff team. He was so impressive that Kenyon Green, a former Fabulous 55 member who currently starts at guard for Texas A&M, was playing right tackle. Dewberry was entrusted with his quarterback’s blindside in the playoffs at 14 years old. That’s impressive. 

PJ Williams, OT, Dickinson

FYI: 6-4, 245; four stars; No. 18-ranked tackle 

Top offers: LSU, Texas, Texas A&M, Michigan (19)

Williams is an athletic tackle with plenty of upside as he continues to grow into the position. His lack of weight jumps off of the recruiting page, but he’s been a star at the varsity level since earning first-team all-district honors in District 24-6A as a sophomore. The weight will come. Texas’ best two offensive linemen over the past 10 years, Samuel Cosmi and Connor Williams, were undersized as prep prospects.

Jaylen Early, OT, Duncanville 

FYI: 6-4, 260; four stars; No. 30-ranked tackle 

Top offers: Alabama, Oklahoma, Ohio State, LSU, Texas (30)

Duncanville is one of the epicenters of college talent inside the state of Texas. The Longhorns dipped into the south Dallas powerhouse in 2020 to sign quarterback Ja’Quinden Jackson. Texas is currently chasing offensive tackle Savion Byrd in the 2021 cycle. The next elite prospect out of Duncanville is offensive tackle Jaylen Early. He was a first-team all-district selection as a sophomore for a team that reached the Class 6A Division I state championship game. 

Devon Campbell, G, Arlington Bowie

FYI: 6-4, 265; five stars; No. 1-ranked guard 

Top offers: Texas, Oklahoma, LSU (27)

Campbell is a bully in the trenches, and that’s intended as the highest form of flattery. He plays with the mean streak that offensive line coaches crave more than any other trait. Luckily for Campbell, the five-star guard possesses the other traits coaches covet too, like size, athleticism and technique. He’s considered the best guard in the 2022 class by 247Sports’ composite rankings. He’s a two-sport star who also plays basketball. Campbell was the District 4-6A offensive sophomore of the year. 

Cole Hutson, G, Frisco

FYI: 6-4, 290; four stars; No. 8-ranked guard

Top offers: Oklahoma, Texas, Texas A&M (13)

Hutson is a big man with big talent, and not just on the football field. He also stars in baseball and as a thrower on the track and field team. His father, Scott, was a pitcher at Arizona State who played some professionally. Hutson is emerging as one of the state’s top interior offensive line prospects. He’s an athletic player with the frame to reach 300 pounds without losing his ability to move better than most young prospects of his stature. 

Neto Umeozulu, G, Allen

FYI: 6-4, 300; three stars; No. 13-ranked guard 

Top offers: Texas, Baylor, USC, Florida State

Allen is the biggest school in Texas. Umeozulu is the biggest prospect, literally, inside the massive program. Umeozulu is  a big-bodied interior lineman who can dominate prep opponents with his sheer strength and size. He’ll need to convert some bad weight into muscle, but that’s true for most teenagers who play offensive line. Umeozulu started at right tackle as a sophomore. He’s expected to slide inside once he reaches college.

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