Texas football kicked off Monday, holding its first practice of the spring season. Media members were allowed to watch the entirety of practice to get a glimpse of what the immediate future looks like for the Longhorns. Here is a good, bad and an unexpected takeaway from Day 1.
THE GOOD - CHRIS WARREN
Many people were shocked at the weight listed next to RB Chris Warren on the official spring football roster. Warren has gained more than 20 pounds since the 2015 season and is currently listed as 255 pounds.
Strong discussed Warren's weight gain at his Monday press conference, labeling him as a guy who has "no fat."
I didn't know what to expect when I would first see Warren Monday, probably because when I think of a 255 pound running back, I think of a blubbery man who may have indulged himself a wee bit too much during the holidays.
That image is nowhere near an accurate description of Warren.
I'm starting to believe the "no fat" comment is in fact true. The 6-2, now 255-pound back is a clydesdale of a man. If Warren can continue to run as hard as he did during his freshman season with the added 20 pounds of muscle, opposing defenses will shutter at the sound of his name.
THE BAD - A WARNING ABOUT THE TEXAS OFFENSE
I am going to preface this comment by saying I did not expect to see a good offense on its first day of implementing an entirely new scheme and practice style. In fact, I did not expect to see anything close to a mediocre offense due to the number of changes on that side of the ball.
What I did expect to witness was a lot of confused and struggling athletes during practice.
Those expectations played out Monday evening.
The offensive unit at times resembled chicken's running around with their heads cut off. But that should have been expected.
I am not saying the offense is "bad" or is going to struggle during the 2016 season, but it has a long way to go. It is going to take a decent amount of time to get the unit to build stamina and overall gel as one.
So this is my warning to Texas fans: If you hear anything about the offense looking bad (and I can almost promise you that you will hear those comments), try to take a few breaths and realize this offense is not going to be magically implemented overnight. It will take time and patience. (Two things I know Texas fans love to hear. )
THE UNEXPECTED - COLLIN JOHNSON
I was sold on Collin Johnson's skills the first time I watched his film. Some people questioned if the skills he showed would translate to college because he attended a small, private high school in California.
I am even more sold on Johnson after seeing him Monday evening.
CJ is a man in every sense of the word. The wide receiver is a legitimate 6-6 and has skills similar his football role model, Calvin Johnson.
It's impossible to miss him on the field, not only because of his towering height, but also because the kid can ball. I don't recall seeing him walk at any moment during Monday's practice. Johnson is going to fight for playing time and I expect he will perform very well once his time has come. And I think the time will come very, very soon.
My early prediction is as long as he stays healthy, Collin Johnson will start against Notre Dame.