|The Frogs must replace one player at the cornerback position, but they are led by rising senior Kevin White.|
|Returning Statistical Leaders|
|Interceptions: White: 3|
|Pass Breakups: White: 8|
|Passes Defensed: White: 11|
UNIT RANKING: B
The strengths of this cornerback group are depth and speed. Gary Patterson said in his signing day press conference that speed, not size, is the most important skill that he recruits in a cornerback. With teams like Baylor, Oklahoma State and Oklahoma, defenses must be able to defend several vertical routes at the same time. The Frogs added five cornerbacks in the 2014 class to go along with Travosky Garrett, Ranthony Texada and Cydney Calvin. The weakness of this group, aside from Kevin White, is experience. The starter at the second cornerback position will likely be making his first start when the Frogs kickoff against Samford in August. The wild card is Deante Gray. Will Gray play offense or defense? How Gray fares in Spring practice will likely decide where Gray ends up, but he started a game last season at cornerback on short notice after playing wide receiver for much of the year. If Patterson has enough confidence in Gray to start with one week of practice, how good could Gray be if he played there for an entire season?
What to watch: Which newcomer has the best chance to play early?
Corry O'Meally comes to the Frogs from Ellsworth Junior College. He intercepted three passes and had a team-best nine pass breakups to go along with 44 tackles. Nick Orr and Nick Foster are the two most physical cornerbacks in the class. Foster is slightly bigger than Orr, but both have the speed that Patterson craves in a cornerback. Torrance Mosley was the 6th ranked cornerback in Louisiana. He played some offense as well in high school, and he may have a longer adjustment period. Lastly, Ridwan Issahaku is a classic Gary Patterson find. Underrated from Georgia, Issahaku led his team to the 6A state title as he picked off two passes and broke up four more.
Gary Patterson has played young players at the cornerback position before, and if Garrett, Texada, Calvin or Gray do not step up, he could opt to do so again.
Breakout player: Ranthony Texada
I'm not convinced Texada is, for sure, going to start, opposite Kevin White, and Gray is my sleeper selection to join White in the starting lineup. However, I see Texada's playing time increasing significantly in 2014. The redshirt freshman can also return punts and kicks, and his speed and quickness is electrifying. Several times last season, Patterson praised Texada in his post-practice press conferences. He is just a year removed from being Defensive MVP at the Offense-Defense All-American game at Reliant Stadium. Texada may only be 5'8, but he has more than enough speed to run with any receiver in the conference.
Keep an eye on: Deante Gray and Corry O'Meally
If they switch Gray from offense to defense, then the coaching staff likely has hopes that Gray will emerge as their starter at cornerback. Meanwhile, O'Meally should have a quicker adjustment period than the other newcomers because he is a junior college transfer. Verrett was a junior college transfer when he emerged as a starter in 2011, so O'Meally could follow the same path as his predecessor.
-Gray moves full time to defense
-Texada and Calvin continue to draw praise from Patterson
-O'Meally and Issahaku are the two newcomers with the best chance to play early