To hear Texas offensive coordinator Bryan Harsin talk about the position, if you're a Longhorn ball-carrier, you may get a shot. He named off every running back on roster, and even pointed to true freshmen like quarterback Jalen Overstreet and running back Johnathan Gray.
"[With the freshmen] it comes back to as well, how many snaps can these guys give us, too," Harsin said. "If it's just three plays a game in that, and a guy's not on special teams … those start to factor as you start to look at it. What's this guy going to do and can he get significant playing time to do these things for us."
Overstreet is one of the most intriguing options, not only because of his size and ability to run the ball, but also because he can throw it better than most Wildcat types as well.
"Jalen, now he's a quarterback," Harsin said. "He's a quarterback. He's a very good-size quarterback and he can move and he's thrown the ball very well in practice. [I've] been very impressed with him and his coachability and his understanding the offense and all that. He's a threat now, like David was for us last year early on, to come in there and run the ball and be able to throw the ball and things like that. Jalen's obviously got those abilities as well."
But the search for the position is still open, something Harsin indicated when he was asked whether any of the freshman players were looking like redshirt candidates.
"We wouldn't say anybody's redshirting right now. We just don't know," Harsin said. "I don't think you tell a guy that when he's coming in. You want a guy that is going to compete and expects to play and then, as it starts to get closer to game time, you've got to sit down and look at it as a staff and go OK, this guy's going to get four reps per game. Is that worth it? Well, can he play on special teams? Yeah. So he's going to get 17 reps a game.
"So you've got to sit down and decide — we're not going to waste anybody out there — is he going to get significant playing time," Harsin said. "But every one of those young guys, or guys that have the ability to redshirt, we expect to play right now. And then we've got to decide if it's going to be worth it or not."