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The Dotted Line: Jonathon Brooks named Mr. Texas Football; Byron Murphy II ties record

Hallettsville running back Jonathon Brooks, who signed with Texas earlier this month, is this year's Mr. Texas Football High School Player of the Year, an honor previously won by UT signees Garrett Gilbert and Johnathan Gray.

The high school season ended in heartbreak for Hallettsville star Jonathon Brooks. The future Longhorn and his teammates fell in overtime to Tuscola Jim Ned in the Class 3A Division I state championship game on Dec. 17.

Almost two weeks later, Brooks received a boost when the three-star running back was named Mr. Texas Football High School Player of the Year by Dave Campbell’s Texas Football Magazine. 

Brooks will enroll at Texas in the summer. He's the third Longhorn to earn the distinction, joining Lake Travis' Garrett Gilbert in 2008 and Aledo's Johnathan Gray in 2011. Brooks was due to receive his award at the Texas Bowl on Thursday, but the game between TCU and Arkansas was canceled due to COVID-19. 

Brooks rushed for 3,530 yards, which is seventh most all-time in Texas history, and 62 touchdowns. He totaled 70 touchdowns and 3,842 yards overall, adding to his yards and touchdowns as a receiver. He even scored on an interception. It was the first state title appearance for Hallettsville in its 107-year history. 

The 6-0, 185-pound Brooks was the only running back to sign with Texas during the early period. He was among 18 prospects who signed with Tom Herman’s program. The class ranks 17th in the nation and second in the Big 12. Brooks is the 420th-ranked overall recruit in the class and the 23rd-best running back prospect, according to 247Sports' composite rankings. 

Brooks isn’t the only member of UT's 2021 class trying to rewrite school history.

DeSoto defensive tackle Byron Murphy II tied a school record in a recent win over Spring by reaching 14 sacks on the season. He and his teammates could potentially play three more games in the Class 6A Division I playoffs. DeSoto faces Duncanville on Saturday in Arlington for the Region II crown. 

“Everyone wants to leave a legacy behind," Murphy said after the win over Spring. "DeSoto is a great program with a lot of history. To put my name in there as the sack leader for a season would be unbelievable.

"But I’ll trade that sack record for a state title. That’s a bigger legacy, and it is more rewarding because we all share in that one.” 

Murphy was a one-time Baylor commit who flipped his pledge to Texas leading up to the early signing period. The 6-1, 290-pound three-star is the 402nd-ranked overall prospect in the class and its 25th-ranked defensive tackle. 

Murphy was the only defensive tackle to sign early with the Longhorns. Texas did sign three defensive ends — Barryn Sorrell, Jordon Thomas and Derrick Harris Jr. Five-star Ja’Tavion Sanders, who is listed as an athlete, also could wind up at defensive end.