Top 22 Countdown: No. 22

Twice a week over the next 11 weeks Chip Brown and William Wilkerson will countdown their most important 22 players to Texas' success in 2014.

Chip's pick:

DT Hassan Ridgeway


6-4, 309

Everyone agrees Ridgeway may have the most upside of all the defensive tackles on campus. But the time is now to start converting that potential considering Texas lacks depth at DT behind starters Malcom Brown and Desmond Jackson.

Ridgeway went through the spring with a foot injury that he fought through, earning points with the coaching staff. But Ridgeway still has a lot of improvement to make technique-wise, especially with his hands.

Ridgeway is being pushed by Brown and Jackson, both of whom know that Ridgeway has the physical tools to be a force. Ridgeway needs a big summer, because he should see a lot of action in a rotation at DT.

William's pick:

OL Darius James

Redshirt Freshman

6-5, 311

James is going to factor into the two-deep and has to be ready at a moment's notice to step into a number of different positions should injury or lackluster play by a starter occur.

Will he start? No. Doubtful. But he's going to press Desmond Harrison at left tackle even though he's probably best suited for an interior line position (was primarily a center in high school).

If Harrison can't ramp up his play and give Texas what it thought it would get from the massive JUCO transfer, then you can expect for James' name to be on the short list to replace him.

This is a player with massive potential, even greater than his massive frame. He's worked hard to get his weight down since high school, where he once told me he got heavier than 340 pounds, and has an extremely high ceiling.

James is a future multi-year starter for Texas. He needs to get his feet wet this season, and will as perhaps the team's top backup.

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