Last December, Texas signed two in one class in offensive tackle Donald Hawkins and Brandon Moore. So does this mean that Texas is throwing open the doors for junior college recruits, once a largely untapped market on the 40 Acres? What does it say about Texas's recruiting process? Texas coach Mack Brown stopped short of saying that the Longhorns would be raiding the JUCO circuit anytime soon.
"I think I can say that I'm glad they're here," Brown said. "They both can improve a lot. I think that their conditioning will be much better this summer now, and they'll be able to learn. They were in a little bit of shock coming in. But I'm glad we took both of them. I think they'll both be factors in the fall."
But Texas didn't stop there. The Longhorns have been evaluating junior college players for the 2013 class, accepting a commitment from Butte Community College tight end Geoff Swaim, and continuing to evaluate other players, like defensive end Kewan Alfred of Trinity Valley Community College. Alfred is expected to visit Texas later this month, and could be next in-line for an offer.
"What we've decided to do is take a junior college player, if we feel like he can fit an immediate need, not be a junior college recruiting group," Brown said. "But if we see somebody that we think fits an immediate need, we'll take him, and if he fits our program."
With both of those players — and with a Texas staff more used to hitting the junior college route — it makes sense. Swaim plays a blocking tight end role that fits exactly what Texas wants from the position. And Alfred was a full qualifier out of high school who could give Texas a more experienced body at a position that could lose both starters after this year, providing immediate depth, if not an immediate starter.
But that's in the future. For now, Brown said he's happy that Texas decided to take a look at the two most recent junior college prospects on the Longhorn roster.
"The two young men have done great," Brown said. "They've handled their academics well. So I'm excited that [defensive tackles coach] Bo [Davis] and [offensive line coach] Stacy [Searels] found those two and brought them in."