Texas recruiting: Longhorns' buzz after Alabama win could lead to flips

On3 imageby:Hunter Shelton09/11/23


How Aggressive will the Texas Longhorns be on the Recruiting Trail After Their Win Over Alabama | How Much Will They Lean on the Portal?

Texas delivered a signature win that rocked the college football world on Saturday night, as the Longhorns downed Alabama in Tuscaloosa, 34-24.

The victory means many things for Steve Sarkisian‘s team right now, as they look to achieve their lofty goals this season. It also means good things could be coming down the pike on the recruiting trail, as the Longhorns now carry an immense amount of momentum.

Texas’ 2024 recruiting class is currently No. 16 in the nation, according to the On3 Industry Team Recruiting Ranking. Last cycle, it turned in the No. 3 class, setting the current bar high for Sarkisian and Co. It may look like they’re behind schedule, but the Longhorns have multiple huge targets still on the board as summer transitions into autumn.

That win over the Crimson Tide could go a long way in adding pieces such as Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei five-star offensive tackle Brandon Baker, Saint Louis University five-star wide receiver Ryan Wingo and Waco (Texas) Connally five-star cornerback Kobe Black. But what if the Longhorns want even more?

On the latest edition of The Inside Scoop, InsideTexas recruiting insider Gerry Hamilton talked the possibility of Texas busting out the spatula and flipping a couple of blue-chippers to join the fold in Austin. Adding some pledges in the secondary could be on the mind of the Longhorns’ staff.

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Texas “recruiting through the whistle”

Texas’ class is highlighted by a pair of top-100 prospects: Duncanville (Texas) Five-Star Plus+ EDGE Colin Simmons and Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy four-star running back Jerrick Gibson. In-state recruiting has remained a priority, as 11 of Texas’ 17 commits hail from the Lone Star State.

Adding more talent from the area could be in play. Hamilton is pointing to a pair of committed cornerbacks — one from Texas and one from Louisiana: Clemson commit Corian Gipson and Florida commit Wardell Mack.

“Look at defensive back, for me,” Hamilton said. “There’s one thing about Steve Sarkisian and this staff, since they’ve arrived in Austin, they don’t back off their Plan As in recruiting, they recruit these guys through the whistle,” Hamilton said.

Gipson and Mack both considered Texas

Before pledging to the Tigers, Gipson, a Lancaster (Texas) native, took five trips to Austin, including an official visit at the end of June. The Longhorns were once considered the leader for the No. 73 player in the 2024 cycle, per the On3 Industry Ranking.

As for Mack, he also visited Texas on an official on June 23. Ultimately, it was the Gators that landed the pledge from the Marrero (La.) John Ehret product, who ranks as the No. 72 player in the country, though the Longhorns were again in the thick of things.

Texas isn’t giving up on either, according to Hamilton. It’s not in the nature of Sarkisian to end his pursuit just because a verbal commitment has been announced. Everyone remains on the board until pen gets put to paper, including Gipson and Mack.

“Texas remains in contact with those guys, i’ll be surprised if you don’t see one or both of those guys on campus at some point during the season,” Hamilton said. “Clemson’s season holds a little bit of the cards there as well, as does Florida’s. Texas isn’t gonna back off these guys.”