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Texas recruiting notebook: Role for Bijan Robinson shifts from running back to recruiter

Texas head coach Steve Sarkisian has been able to deploy an important weapon in his recruiting arsenal: star running back Bijan Robinson, left, an all-Big 12 player who said he intends to get active in recruiting future Longhorns.

Texas running back Bijan Robinson has become an in-demand spokesperson this year.

Thanks to NIL, Robinson has earned endorsement deals with Raising Cane's, Pinkerton's Barbecue and the Athletic Brewing Company. He's modeled the new men's collection produced by Kendra Scott. It was recently announced that he'll be a brand ambassador for DAZN, a boxing streaming service.

But in addition to all that, Robinson is also a spokesperson for the UT football team.

Robinson recently made an appearance on an Instagram Live broadcast that was hosted by UT football recruit Derrick Brown. Malik Agbo, a four-star offensive lineman with a Texas offer, also was on the call at the time.

Robinson's season ended last month when he suffered a dislocated elbow in the Kansas game. Two weeks later, he did an exit interview with local reporters. Robinson confirmed that he would return for the 2022 season. He also said that he was determined to help the Longhorns get better.

"I'm really active in recruiting," Robinson said. "I recruit a lot of guys. I used to be not that active, but now that I see what (head coach Steve Sarkisian's) trying to do and who he wants, I'm trying to be that guy to come in from behind and say my little two words to them and encourage them to come here as well."

Robinson, who was a five-star recruit when he was coming out of high school, scored 15 touchdowns over the 10 games he played this season. His 1,127 rushing yards were the 14th-most in school history. On Thursday, he earned a first-team nod on the all-conference team. 

Coming and going: Texas fans couldn't just focus on turkey and stuffing on Thanksgiving. Last week, UT's 2022 recruiting class underwent a makeover. 

On Thanksgiving, the Longhorns gained a commitment from four-star cornerback Jaylon Guilbeau but also lost a commitment from four-star running back Jamarion Miller. Guilbeau, who was once linked to Texas when Tom Herman was coaching the Longhorns, flipped from TCU. Miller is now an Alabama pledge.

The following day, four-star receiver Armani Winfield announced his decommitment while Texas was playing Kansas State. Three-star linebacker Eoghan Kerry then decommitted this past Saturday, though 247Sports later reported the breakup was a mutual decision by both Kerry and UT's coaching staff.

Texas has 20 players committed. On the 247Sports composite rankings, UT is No. 7 nationally and leading the Big 12. The early signing day period begins Dec. 15.

Lincoln Riley fallout: Since news broke that Lincoln Riley would leave Oklahoma for USC, eight recruits have backed off their pledges to the Sooners. Four of those players are Class of 2022 prospects. Kobie McKinzie, a four-star linebacker from Lubbock, was offered a scholarship by Texas two days after his decommitment.

Brown picks Ohio State: Texas missed out on a chance to sign another quarterback this recruiting cycle when Devin Brown announced Wednesday that he'd attend Ohio State. A four-star quarterback from Utah, Brown reported an offer from Texas in October.

Texas is still holding onto a commitment from California quarterback Maalik Murphy. Like Brown, Murphy is a four-star prospect.

Around the Big 12: The first two players to commit to Sonny Dykes' staff at TCU were 2022 receiver Jordan Hudson and 2023 receiver Cordale Russell. Hudson and Russell are both four-star talents who previously pledged to Dykes while he was coaching at SMU. ... East Mississippi Community College linebacker Lee Kpogba committed to West Virginia on Thursday. ... Tevita Noa, a three-star tight end out of Utah's Snow College, said on Tuesday that he'd transfer to Kansas. Noa was once a committed to TCU.