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.

Texas commit De'Gabriel Floyd is one of the nation's top linebackers. (Mike Craven)

Football

The Dotted Line: Defensive grades for Texas’ 2019 recruiting class

Posted December 26th, 2018

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The first wave of commitments in the 2019 class signed with Texas during the three-day early signing period. Tom Herman inked 22 prospects with six set to enroll early, including four-star inside linebacker De’Gabriel Floyd.

We graded the offense on Monday. Here are the defensive grades as the class stands now:

Defensive line: B-

Texas commit T’Vondre Sweat at Huntsville spring practice. (Mike Craven)

Signings: Jacoby Jones, T’Vondre Sweat, Peter Mpagi, Myron Warren

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Remaining targets: Ishmael Sospher, Braedon Mowry

Texas cleaned up at end with four unique prospects all offering something different on the field. Jones is a JUCO product ready to compete right away at a position group that’s losing Charles Omenihu and Breckyn Hager. Sweat and Warren are big-bodied players who can help stop the run until they refine pass rushing skills, while Mpagi possesses a shot to help as a pass rushing specialist as a freshman.

Defensive tackle was the big miss. Texas doesn’t need as many of the typical three-technique tackles that other schools recruit because of its formation. Texas utilizes two ends, one big noseguard and speedy linebackers and edge players. Sweat and Warren are potential stars.

Sospher holds a UT offer, but the Louisiana product appears headed to Alabama or LSU. He isn’t signing until February, so there’s a slight chance Texas will get back in the mix. Remember, Moro Ojomo emerged as a top target at this time last year and a prospect appearing from the background is a possibility at any positions.

Mowry is a four-star end who didn’t sign with Texas A&M during the early period.

Linebackers: A

Signings: De’Gabriel Floyd, Marcus Tillman Jr., Caleb Johnson, David Gbenda

Remaining targets: None

The Longhorns did great at linebacker with four legit prospects. Johnson is a JUCO product ready to compete for starting spots at all three linebacker positions. Floyd and Tillman will enroll early. That’s great news for a position group that’s losing Gary Johnson and Anthony Wheeler after the Sugar Bowl. Gbenda is an in-state prospect with tons of upside.

It’s unlikely Texas chases another linebacker in this class unless it’s a JUCO product or grad transfer.

Cornerbacks: B

Signings: Kenyatta Watson II, Marques Caldwell

Remaining targets: None

Texas wanted a pair of long, athletic cornerbacks with the ability to play slot, safety or outside. Mission accomplished. Watson is the higher-touted of the two, but Caldwell is a sneaky athlete with a great frame and tons of upside. The three-star missed his senior season with a labrum injury. Watson is a product of football factory Grayson High School in Buford, Ga. He’ll immediately compete with guys like Anthony Cook and Jalen Green.

Safeties: B+

Signings: Tyler Owens, Chris Adimora

Remaining targets: Jalen Catalon

Texas will end up with an A+ if it lands Catalon in February. Owens is a freaky athlete with untapped potential. He impressed the coaching staff at a camp in the summer and immediately shot up recruiting ranks once his senior season began. Adimora is a blur who excelled at safety and wide receiver in California. Texas signed the top three safeties in the nation in 2018 and followed it up with a pair of strong prospects.

2019 Texas Longhorns recruiting class

PlayerPos. SchoolStarsCommitment date
Roschon Johnson QBPort Neches-Groves4July 21 (2017)
T'Vondre Sweat DEHuntsville3Feb. 28
Jordan Whittington WRCuero4March 10
De'Gabriel Floyd OLBWestlake Village (Calif.)4March 31
Kenyatta Watson IIDBGrayson (Ga.)4May 1
Brayden Liebrock TEChandler (Ariz.)3May 8
Tyler JohnsonOLConroe Oak Ridge4May 25
Jared WileyTETemple3May 26
Jake SmithWRNotre Dame Preparatory (Ariz.)4June 3
Peter MpagiDEGeorge Ranch3June 16
Chris AdimoraSMayfair (Calif.)4July 1
Marques CaldwellCBAlvin3July 7
Marcus Tillman Jr.OLBJones (Fla.)3July 28
Javonne ShepherdOTNorth Forest4July 29
Derrian BrownRBBuford (Ga.)4Sept. 16
Tyler OwensSPlano East4Sept. 24
David GbendaILBKaty Cinco Ranch4Sept. 30
Marcus WashingtonWRTrinity Catholic (Mo.)4Oct. 26
Myron WarrenDEMany (La.)3Nov. 19
Jacoby JonesDEButler C.C.3Nov. 21
Caleb JohnsonOLBFullerton College (Calif.)3Dec. 17
Kennedy LewisWRMelissa3Dec. 18
Isaiah HookfinOTFort Bend Dulles4Dec. 21

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