Texas’ 2021 recruiting class currently rests at 11 members, ranks 16th in the country and first in the Big 12, per 247Sports’ composite ratings. The class is headlined by five-star athlete Ja’Tavion Sanders and his Denton Ryan teammate, four-star athlete Billy Bowman Jr. The Houston area is well represented with commitments from quarterback Jalen Milroe, defensive end Jordon Thomas, outside linebacker Derrick Harris Jr. and offensive tackle Hayden Conner.
Tom Herman’s coaching experience at Houston allowed him immediate success on the recruiting trail in that area, specifically in the 2018 cycle when he landed nearly every major Houston prospect en route to the third-ranked class in the nation in his first full recruiting cycle at Texas.
Texas can’t win with just Houston or Dallas prospects. The Longhorns need to recruit well in both metroplexes to return to national prominence. Texas signed more prospects from the Dallas-Fort Worth area in 2020 than it had in the previous three previous classes combined. Herman wants that trend to continue in 2021, and the prospects trending toward Texas include a pair of defensive backs from north Texas:
Ishmael Ibraheem, cornerback, Dallas Kimball
FYI: 6-1, 175; four stars; No. 13-ranked cornerback
I’ll be committing June 15 🎬🍿…@simplyCoachO
— Ishmael Ibraheem (@ishCo2021) June 1, 2020
Ibraheem is a two-time first-team all-district selection despite opponents avoiding his side of the field. He’s recorded 59 tackles, broken up 11 passes and collected a pair of interceptions during his two years on varsity. He also runs track at Kimball, excelling in the 200-meters and long jump.
Ibraheem looks like he was created in a lab, or on an old edition of the NCAA video game. He’s tall. He’s long. He’s aggressive. He’s plenty fast enough to stick with elite receivers. There isn’t much not to like about him. He’s raw and doesn’t face the daily competition at practice or in games that some elite prospects get to as prep athletes. He’s usually the best and most athletic player on the football field, so the move up in competition will take some adjusting.
Top offers: Texas, Georgia, LSU, Oklahoma
JD Coffey, safety, Kennedale
FYI: 6-0, 180; four stars; No. 7-ranked safety
Top offers: Texas, LSU, Oregon, Washington
I will be commiting June 15th💰…
— JD Coffey III (@JD_Coffey1) June 1, 2020
Coffey became a prep star as a freshman, earning Class 4A first-team all-state honors in 2017 after recording 88 tackles, including 11 tackles for loss, and six interceptions. He was a first-team all-district selection as a sophomore and the District 6-4A Division I defensive MVP as a junior. He’s a ballhawk with 14 interceptions in his three-year career.
He excels as a roaming free safety who can read the quarterback and trust his instincts to wind up in the right spot. Like most prep stars, he’ll need to learn how to play within a defense and continue to add bulk to his frame. Coffey is unafraid to help in the run game and could be used at nickel early in his career. He also can help in the return game where he scored three times as a junior.
Jaden Alexis, wide receiver, Pompano Beach (Fla.) Monarch Prep
FYI: 5-11, 175; three stars; No. 63-ranked wide receiver
Top offers: Texas, Florida State, Miami
Alexis is a speedster. He was credited with a 4.41 laser-timed 40-yard dash. He also competes in the 100- and 200-meters. He’s the student class president at Monarch. He played both ways as a junior, but his collegiate upside is at wide receiver where he caught 49 passes for 894 yards and eight touchdowns. Alexis held 36 offers. He comes from a proven football bloodline as the son of Rich Alexis, who starred at Washington University before playing for multiple teams in the NFL.
A player doesn’t amass 36 offers without talent and upside. Jaden is considered a national top-400 player and the 63rd-ranked wide receiver in the country. He’s also ranked as the 63rd-ranked prospect in Florida by 247Sports’ composite. That’s a higher national ranking than 2020 signee Dajon Harrison of Hutto, who is considered by many in-state as a potential sleeper in Texas’ 2020 class.