The Heard

Welcome to The Heard, LonghornDigest's weekly in-depth look inside the never-ending world of Longhorns recruiting with news, notes and interesting tidbits on the latest happenings around the program. We'll release this every Friday.

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Read The Heard after the jump:

Practicing what he preaches

White hoping to make Texas camp

Stock Rising for 2016 DB

Washington likes Texas, pushes for No. 1

Practicing what he preaches

When Jordan Stevenson's days in football are up he could have a career as a preacher.

The four-star Texas running back commitment from Dallas South Oak Cliff begins nearly every sentence by thanking the big fella upstairs for the position he's in, and also sing his praises for helping him stay true to his verbal commitment to UT amidst all of the coaching change.

"I left it in God's hands," he said. "I knew everything was going to work out for a reason. There's a reason why the coaching staff left. You can never expect it. But I weighed my options and knew that whatever happened was going to happen.

"Now we've got Coach Robinson in from USC. He is really good friends with [former Texas RB coach] Larry Porter so Porter said he left me in good hands. Robinson has built a great relationship with me since I have remained strong with UT."

Stevenson, the No. 14 RB in 2015, and Robinson talk about twice a week.

"He is basically saying that I bring a lot of great impact to the game," Stevenson said. "He says I have a lot of ability on and off the field, that he expects that I'll play early, and wants me to finish off a strong senior season. I can't wait to get to work."

There are other reasons for Stevenson wanting to go to Texas aside from Robinson, namely the feel he gets when he's in Austin and what UT can help him do academically.

"When I went down there it felt like home," he said. "Basically just feeling the Longhorn vibe and the Longhorn way. Just being in Austin and showing me all the game-changing plays I could make. And also my major of political science and graphic arts and designs, I could see myself down there."

While Stevenson is one of the highest-rated commitments for the Longhorns, and also one of its first pledges in 2015, he isn't relentlessly recruiting on UTs behalf.

"I won't recruit guys but I will voice my opinion," he said. "I will tell guys that Texas is a great place and it's a great look on your resume at the same time after college, because there is a life after football also."

Stevenson had a terrific junior season in rushing 217 times for 2,019 yards and 18 touchdowns. He also caught 16 passes for 307 yards and two scores.

It's that type of versatility that Stevenson believes will help set him apart in Austin.

"First off I feel like my main thing is speed, athleticism and being a big-time game changer," he said. "I can do things that are uncoachable. I feel like I am going to bring a new aspect to the game at UT, a little juice, a little flavor."

He'll surely try to practice what he preaches. (Wilkerson)

White hoping to make Texas camp

Ask college coaches for an intriguing 2016 quarterback, and it probably wouldn't take long to mention Marietta (Ga.) Walton QB Josh White.

At 6-foot-5 and 220 pounds, White projects as the kind of pocket passer, with athleticism, that Texas is looking for.

He showed off his footwork and arm in a stellar performance at the recent Golden Arm Challenge, and he said his training has prepared him well to throw at camps this summer.

"I can tell a little difference with my footwork," White said. "I can still make all the throws without my footwork being perfect … my arm is strong enough. But the thing about footwork is that it all correlates to the game. You're getting your feet down so that you can align your timing with your receivers.

"Everything matters," White said. "I want to be the best pro-style quarterback, so I have to key in on small things. One of the things that footwork helps you with is consistency. I feel like everybody has good throws and bad throws, but you want the ratio to be more in your favor. Not every throw is going to be good, but can you get to 8-of-10, 9-of-10 or 10-of-10, especially on short routes? I want to focus on my consistency."

That's something that Texas quality control assistant Riley Dodge can relate to. As one of the most prolific quarterbacks in Texas high school history, the quality control quarterbacks coach can offer some advice on using the little things to improve consistency.

"I'm actually building a really good relationship with Coach Dodge," White said. "I haven't talked a lot with (Shawn Watson). Coach Rumph, he's my area recruiter, and we had a past relationship from when he was at Alabama. He's like an uncle to me and always gives the best advice.

"I've been in contact with Coach Rumph, but the biggest strides have been made with Coach Dodge," White said. "We're building a great relationship."

White visited Texas for the Longhorns' Junior Day, and he said he plans to get back to the 40 Acres. Texas's quarterback camp this summer falls on a mandatory camp day for his high school, but he said he plans to come out to another camp so the staff can see him throw in person.

"I really want to get back and see the city … I'd really like that," White said. "My mom didn't get to come before, so she would like to visit them, too.

"I love Austin, and I can't wait to get back down there," White said.

White currently has one offer, from Mississippi State, with the Bulldogs offering before his sophomore year. He's also been talking to North Carolina and Auburn on a regular basis.

But expect White to end the summer, and especially his junior season, with more offers on the table. After all, all that work on footwork and timing has prepared him well for a camp setting where he could be throwing for a scholarship.

"I feel like I've been preparing myself exactly for that situation," White said. "Being a big pro-style guy, I want to make sure that I check every box each coach wants to see, with consistency and footwork being big boxes to check. I feel like I check accuracy and throwing power, so I'll just continue to work and add on to the things that I'm good at. I'm going to go in prepared." (Flaherty)

Stock rising for 2016 DB

It's amazing how quickly word can spread after a performance like four-star 2016 safety Deontay Anderson (Manvel, Texas) had at the Houston Nike Football Training Camp on Sunday.

Anderson won defensive back MVP honors at the camp and picked up his first two offers on Monday from Houston and Mississippi State.

"It means a lot," he said. "It means that once you do what you have to do God will bless you with great stuff."

In talking with Anderson and the Texas Relays a couple of weeks ago he said that he needed to improve his one-on-one coverage skills because, as a safety, he isn't asked to do that very much playing 12 yards off the ball.

But he knew he'd have to at the NFTC and made up his mind that he was going to go for that The Opening invitation.

"I just made my mind up to go and get it. I have to give all the glory to God," he said. "I felt really good. That was the best of Houston. I just made my mind up that I was going to get it, be patient and go get the ball."

The two receivers that really stood out to Anderson were 2015 Texas offer Kemah Siverand (Houston/Cy Ridge) and three-star Gary Haynes (Manvel, Texas).

Anderson said that Haynes was the best receiver he faced.

"He is just quick. Going against him all the time, it makes us better," he said. "It makes us smarter in what we have to do. Gary is a bulldog. He will do anything to get the ball. He won MVP. Yeah he is undersized but whatever you want him to do he will go do it. He is that guy that you don't want him to hit you, he'll play corner, safety, just an athlete. That makes him hard to cover him."

Anderson picked up another offer on Thursday from North Carolina, and is expecting plenty others to come in due time.

One of those he is hoping for is Texas and Anderson got a chance to talk with the Longhorns staff while at the Texas Relays.

"I went to practice. It was pretty good," he said. "You can tell they are still improving but it was pretty good. I spoke with Vance Bedford. I introduced myself. He just said that he liked my size."

The Longhorns will be frequent visitors at Manvel over the next few seasons with an offer already out to fellow 2016 prospect Reggie Hemphill. (Wilkerson)

Washington likes Texas, pushes for No. 1

A lot of players talk about trying to become the No. 1 player at their position in the country. But few, like Isaiah Washington of New Orleans's Edna Karr, have seen what it takes to get to that point. But Washington, who played alongside 2014 five-star Gerald Willis and with Scout.com's No. 1 wide receiver in 2014 in Devante Noil, has had an up-close look at what it takes. He took that attitude to last weekend's Houston NFTC.

"I'm trying to prove that I'm the No. 1 defensive end in the nation and get to The Opening," Washington said. "I feel like there was more stuff that I accomplished in one year than people have accomplished in four years they've been starting."

Washington played opposite Willis a year ago, giving Edna Karr one of the top end duos in the country. Washington called Willis "one of the greatest teachers."

"We're total opposites," Washington said. "He's the boom, I'm the lightning, and that's how we roll. We had that chemistry together."

But while Willis picked Florida for his college football home, Washington was quick to commit to the home-state Tigers. But that hasn't stopped him from continuing to evaluate his options, including the Texas Longhorns.

"Texas is on the radar big with me," Washington said. "They feel like I feel, that I'm one of the top d-ends in the nation.

"They like the way I come off the edge and that I'm an every-down guy," Washington said. "I can play the run and the pass. I'm not just a pass-rush guy."

Texas defensive backs coach Chris Vaughn has been on the case as he continues to canvass Louisiana for top talent.

"He's crazy," Washington said, laughing. "That's a good coach. He and I have a great relationship."

Washington said "a lot of colleges" are after him right now, and while he plans to visit Texas at least once more, including a likely visit at some point this spring, he said it's going to be tough to beat LSU. He favors the Tigers because of their coaching staff and the atmosphere at Tiger Stadium.

"You're going to have to triple-time that," Washington said. "You've got to show that you care and you really want me. Because if I don't have a relationship with you, how am I supposed to trust that you're going to help make me one of the best players in the nation and ready for the NFL? Right now, what I care about is getting my education and moving on to the NFL." (Flaherty)


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