Gather around children and I will tell you the tale of a once mighty king who ruled and fell by an overinflated sense of self-worth. It is a story as old as the Bible. But this chapter goes way back to year 2009 A.D., the last year the Texas Longhorns did anything of significance and were broken by a man named Saban.
After a 13–0 regular season, Texas loss the BCS National Championship Game to Alabama. Although they did not know it, their program was in deep trouble. Yet, they built a golden idol to themselves despite the gathering storm clouds.
Mack Brown lost 21 games over the next four season (he had 27 losses in his first 12 seasons in Austin) and was fired. This was followed by Charlie Strong getting in over his head for three losing seasons. Despite the failure on the field, recruiting stayed respectable. That is until 2017.
TEXAS TEAM RANKINGS:
The biggest symptom of the Longhorns' recruiting ills begins at home. As of late, they have been raising the flag outside the stadium and expecting in-state recruits to just bum-rush their ways to Austin. It is hard to pinpoint when it started. LSU and Oklahoma had always had success in the Lone Star State but Texas always lassoed the majority of the top in-state prospects. Soon after, schools like Stanford, Michigan and Ohio State started creeping in.
It was 2013, when things really started to turn sour. The top Texas recruit Keith Ford was heading to Oklahoma and #2 Ricky Seals-Jones was headed to hated rival Texas A&M. "Well, at least we have the #3 in-state prospect," they must have felt. They were right until Nick Saban flipped A'Shawn Robinson on NSD.
2014 was better overall but the Longhorns missed out on the top 8 recruits including Myles Garrett (TAMU), Tony Brown (Bama), and Jamal Adams (LSU).
The trend of losing games and losing in-state recruits continues today. Some may try blaming it on a regime change but this past Wednesday was an unmitigated disaster for Texas. Of the top 25 in-state recruits, new head coach Tom Herman - who had been at Houston and is no stranger to the territory - signed exactly ONE player.
2017 TOP TEXAS FOOTBALL RECRUITS:
|1||Marvin Wilson||DT||5||Houston, TX||Florida State|
|2||Jeffrey Okudah||DB||5||Grand Prairie, TX||Ohio State|
|3||Walker Little||OL||5||Houston, TX||Stanford|
|4||Baron Browning||LB||5||Kennedale, TX||Ohio State|
|5||Austin Deculus||OL||4||Cypress, TX||LSU|
|6||Brock Wright||TE||4||Cypress, TX||Notre Dame|
|7||J.K. Dobbins||RB||4||La Grange, TX||Ohio State|
|8||K'Lavon Chaisson||DE||4||Houston, TX||LSU|
|9||Anthony Hines||LB||4||Plano, TX||Texas A&M|
|10||Jack Anderson||OG||4||Frisco, TX||Texas Tech|
|11||Tyrell Shavers||WR||4||Lewisville, TX||Alabama|
|12||Levi Jones||LB||4||Austin, TX||Southern Cal|
|13||Tyrese Robinson||OL||4||McKinney, TX||Oklahoma|
|14||Robert Barnes||DB||4||Southlake, TX||Oklahoma|
|15||Sam Ehlinger||QB||4||Austin, TX||Texas|
|16||Chevin Calloway||DB||4||Dallas, TX||Arkansas|
|17||Omar Manning||WR||4||Lancaster, TX||TCU|
|18||Cedarian Lamb||WR||4||Richmond, TX||Oklahoma|
|19||Eno Benjamin||RB||4||Wylie, TX||Arizona State|
|20||Charleston Rambo||WR||4||Cedar Hill, TX||Oklahoma|
|21||Hezekiah Jones||WR||4||Stafford, TX||Texas A&M|
|22||Chris Robison||QB||4||Mesquite, TX||Oklahoma|
|23||Derrick Tucker||DB||4||Manvel, TX||Texas A&M|
|24||Edward Ingram||OL||4||DeSoto, TX||LSU|
|25||Major Tennison||TE||4||Bullard, TX||Alabama|
This is verging on embarrassing. In addition to Texas's woes, the entire Big XII had a pretty dreadful showing on Wednesday, outside of Oklahoma. The third highest rated Big XII class belongs to embattled Baylor at #34.
The recruiting future does not look too bright in the state's capital either. At this point, most teams have a handful of commits for the next year or two. Texas has none.
You have to think at this point, Texas is eyeing an escape route - most likely to the PAC-12 - further pushing the Big XII towards the eventual of the dissolution.
BONUS RECRUITING SCHADENFREUDE FLASHBACK:
Remember when Rashaan Evans signed with Alabama and Auburn posted him as one of their signees? Shortly after that faux pas went viral, the site was taken down. However, now either Auburn is hoping that Evans will transfer or there is a bit of interwebz leftovers still buzzing around in their cloud: