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Five-star quarterback Maalik Murphy pledges to Texas

Texas lost a five-star quarterback in the fall when Quinn Ewers decommitted from the Longhorns in favor of Ohio State. New head coach Steve Sarkisian landed a five-star quarterback for himself on Saturday afternoon when Maalik Murphy picked the Longhorns over 30 other offers. The 6-4, 225-pound Murphy is the 30th-ranked player in the 2022 cycle and the second-ranked pro-style quarterback in the country, trailing only Ewers. 

Murphy, who hails from Gardena, Calif., did not play as a junior because of the state’s COVID-19 protocol. Murphy held an offer from Texas when Sarkisian arrived, and Sarkisian was recruiting him heavily while still the offensive coordinator at Alabama. Sarkisian is also a Calfornian, so the two possessed a deep connection when Texas hired its new coach. That existing relationship resulted in a commitment despite Murphy’s inability to visit Texas in an official capacity.

Murphy is a strong-armed quarterback with the maturity and leadership skills coveted by coaches. He's a well-liked player in recruiting circles, which should help the Longhorns land more offensive weapons in the 2022 cycle, specifically from California. Wide receiver CJ Williams is among 12 other prospects from California who are in possession of a Texas offer. 

The Longhorns now hold commitments from players ranked inside the national top-80 at quarterback, running back and wide receiver. Jaydon Blue, a four-star running back from Klein Cai, pledged to Texas on Feb. 2. He's the top-ranked running back in the state and the 60th-ranked player in the country. Armani Winfield, a four-star wide receiver from Lewisville, was Sarkisian's first commitment as a Texas coach. He's ranked 79th nationally on 247Sport's composite rankings. 

Murphy was one of five quarterbacks in the 2022 cycle holding an offer from the Longhorns. Ewers is pledged to Ohio State. Texas A&M found its quarterback in Cypress Bridgeland's Conner Weigman. That leaves out-of-state prospect Ty Simpson and Westlake signal-caller Cade Klubnik as the only uncommitted quarterback prosects in the 2022 cycle holding an offer from Texas.

And with the current climate of transfers, Texas will likely try and sign two quarterbacks in the 2022 cycle because there are only three quarterbacks at Texas who are currently on scholarship. One of those is 2021 signee Charles Wright. Casey Thompson and Hudson Card are expected to battle it out for the starting spot vacated by Sam Ehlinger.

Murphy hopes to join that conversation in 2022. His commitment pushed Texas' class to seventh in the nation and second in the Big 12.