Sam Ehlinger (Taylor Estes - HornsDigest.com)

National Signing Day Recap: Complete Texas Longhorns 2017 Signing Class Analysis

First-year Texas head coach Tom Herman signed 18 recruits to the Longhorns' 2017 signing class. Here's a breakdown of what Texas is getting in 2017.

TE CADE BREWER

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 3-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot-3, 220-pounds

High School: Lake Travis 

Position Rank: No. 43

Texas TE Rank: No. 5

Scout.com Analysis

Cade Brewer is a modern spread tight end prospect who can play the H/Y roles in today's more wide-open offense. He's a sound blocker for his size, but does not possess traditional inline tight end frame potential. That said, he's solidly built and physical in the run game. As a receiver, Brewer can line up in a variety of spots, including out wide. He's great at high-pointing the ball and making plays in traffic. He's always dangerous in run-after-catch opportunities. Overall, Brewer is a quality spread tight end prospect with the ability to play at the Power Five conference level. - Gabe Brooks, Scout.com Midlands Recruiting Analyst.

Strengths

High-pointing

Route-running ability

Catching in traffic

Run-after-catch ability

Areas to Improve

Separation

Size

HIGH SCHOOL CAREER

Brewer finished his three-year varsity career at Austin-area powerhouse Lake Travis High School with 118 catches for 1,781 yards and 29 touchdowns on 14.7 yards per reception. He also ran for 110 yards and three TD's on 13.8 yards per carry during his junior and senior seasons.2016: As a senior, Brewer caught 64 passes for 898 yards and 14 touchdowns, while rushing six times for 98 yards and two scores as he helped Lake Travis to a 15-1 record and the Texas Class 6A Division I state championship.2015: Brewer enjoyed a breakout junior season with 51 catches for 813 yards and 14 TD's as Lake Travis reached the Texas Class 6A Division II state title game. Brewer also ran for one touchdown and threw a TD pass.2014: Brewer saw his first varsity action with three receptions for 70 yards and one touchdown.

http://www.scout.com/player/204345-cade-brewer

DE MAX CUMMINS

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 3-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot-6, 245-pounds

High School: All Saints Episcopal (Fort Worth, Texas)

Position Rank: No. 94

Texas DE Rank: No. 10

Scout.com Analysis 

Max Cummins is a late-cycle riser who garnered Power Five attention following a solid senior season. Cummins possesses an excellent frame and a lot of potential for bulk addition as he fills out in a college weight program. He's tall and long has ample space on his frame. Cummins is a high-energy player who has experience playing multiple positions on the defensive line. He projects best as a strong-side end in a four-man front, but has the room to add weight that could allow him to slide inside in certain situations. Cummins can improve his leverage and pad-level consistency. He will need to adjust to the jump from private school football to high-major college football. Cummins may not be a first-year contributor, but because of his potential for growth and his high motor, is a good developmental prospect with a fairly high ceiling down the road. - Gabe Brooks, Scout.com Midlands Recruiting Analyst.

Strengths

Frame

Backside pursuit

Intensity/motor

Areas to Improve

Body control/balance

Leverage

2016 Stats: Cummins finished his senior season with 72 tackles, 12 tackles for loss, 5 1/2 sacks, and one forced fumble.

http://www.scout.com/player/213042-max-cummins

TE REESE LEITAO

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 3-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot-4, 234-pounds

High School: Jenks (Okla.)

Position Rank: No. 22

Oklahoma TE Rank: No. 1

http://www.scout.com/player/194685-reese-leitao

CB KOBE BOYCE

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 3-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot, 163-pounds

High School: Lake Dallas

Position Rank: No. 52

Texas CB Rank: No. 6

Scout.com Analysis 

Kobe Boyce is a cornerback who has good size at the position and will only look more impressive as he adds some weight, but has the height to match-up with the opposing team's No. 1 outside receiver. He is a strong talent against the run and will come up and secure the edge. Again, that will be an even bigger strength as he adds natural size and power with natural development. He played a huge role in his team's on the field success in 2015, as he locked down one half of the field and team's rarely want to pass or run on the side he lines up on. - Greg Powers, Scout.com National Recruiting Analyst.

Strengths

Burst out of breaks
Frame
Recovery ability

Areas to Improve

Coverage awareness

2016 Stats: Boyce finished his senior season with 36 tackles, three tackles for loss, one interception, one forced fumble, two pass breakups, and one field-goal block. He also gained 154 yards on offense, including four passes for 136 yards and a touchdown.

2015: As a junior, Boyce assembled a strong season with 40 tackles, three tackles for loss, two interceptions, and eight pass breakups for a Lake Dallas team that went 12-3 and reached the state semifinals in Texas' Class 5A Division II. - Gabe Brooks, Scout.com Midlands Recruiting Analyst.

http://www.scout.com/player/204366-kobe-boyce

OLB MARQEZ BIMAGE

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 3-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot-3, 230-pounds

High School: Brenham (Texas)

Position Rank: No. 31

Texas OLB Rank: No. 5

Scout.com Analysis 

Marqez Bimage is one of those guys who will wreck shop as a hybrid DE/OLB. He already has experience playing with his hand in the dirt and standing up. One of the first things that jumps out on his tape is his explosion. He is quick with the first step and that presses the actions. He is a solid tackler due to the fact that he delivers hits with a lot of force and violence. - Greg Powers, Scout.com National Recruiting Analyst

Strengths

Aggressiveness
Blitzing ability
Hitting ability

Areas to Improve

Shedding/disengaging

HIGH SCHOOL STATS

2016: Bimage played both sides of the ball for Brenham in Texas Class 5A. Defensively, he registered 57 tackles, 19 1/2 tackles for loss, nine sacks, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, and two blocked field goals. He also gained 251 yards from scrimmage and scored seven offensive touchdowns. Bimage ran 30 times for 118 yards and five TD's, while catching five passes for 133 yards and two score. - Gabe Brooks, Scout.com Midlands Recruiting Analyst.

http://www.scout.com/player/204384-marqez-bimage

DT JAMARI CHISHOLM

Inside The Numbers

Star Rating: 3-Star

Height/Weight: 6-foot-5, 290 pounds

http://www.scout.com/player/205618-jamari-chisholm

OT SAMUEL COSMI

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 3-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot-5, 260-pounds

High School: Atascocita (Texas)

Position Rank: No. 101

Texas OT Rank: No. 13

http://www.scout.com/player/209854-samuel-cosmi

CB JOSH THOMPSON

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 4-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot, 182-pounds

High School: Nacogdoches

Scout.com National Rank: No. 222

Position Rank: No. 23

Texas CB Rank: No. 4

Scout.com Analysis 

Josh Thompson is the type of defensive back who could potentially play cornerback or safety at the high-major level. Good size with the space to add more bulk once he's in college. Well-built prospect with good combination of size and athleticism. Laser-timed at 4.48 in the 40, as well as a 4.22 shuttle. He's shown excellent straight-line speed as well as good lateral quickness and hip turn. Physical player who can fight through receivers' perimeter blocks vs. the run. Type of player who could become a dangerous blitzer if used that way. Always around the ball and possesses the ability to chase down receivers in coverage if beaten off the line. Thompson can provide the big hit, but occasionally sacrifices tackling technique to do so. He's been recruited as a cornerback and a safety and could fit either position as needed, as well as the nickel. - Gabe Brooks Scout.com Midlands Recruiting Analyst.

Strengths

Closing speed
Coverage awareness
Recovery ability

Areas to Improve

Jamming ability

2016: As a senior, Thompson played both sides of the ball for Nacogdoches High School in Texas Class 5A. He recorded 71 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, two INT's, two forced fumbles, four fumble recoveries, and five pass breakups. He caught 15 passes for 210 yards and four touchdowns on offense.

http://www.scout.com/player/204269-josh-thompson

OG DEREK KERSTETTER

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 3-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot-5, 280-pounds

High School: San Antonio Reagan 

Position Rank: No. 37

Texas OG Rank: No. 7

Scout.com Analysis 

Derek Kerstetter is a big, physical high school offensive tackle who may project best in college to a guard position. His frame and playing experience could allow him to be position-versatile at the next level. Kerstetter thrives in the run game thanks to his ability to lock on defenders and finish blocks through the whistle. - Gabe Brooks, Scout.com Midland Recruiting Analyst.

Army Bowl Evaluation Notes

Derek Kerstetter came into the game fresh off of his commitment to Texas and showed the reasons as to why the staff there targeted him. He is a bit bigger than his listed height and weight in his Scout profile. He is a versatile prospect up front. He plays tackle in high school, but will likely end up at center or guard in college and has had success playing both in Army Bowl practices versus some great competition. He added a star already this week. - Greg Powers, Scout.com National Recruiting Analyst.

Strengths

Drive-blocking ability

Frame

Power/strength

Tenacity

Areas to Improve

Body control/balance

Feet

Pad level

http://www.scout.com/player/206158-derek-kerstetter

RB DANIEL YOUNG

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 3-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot, 210-pounds

High School: Houston Westfield

Position Rank: No. 41

Texas RB Rank: No. 7

Scout.com Analysis 

Daniel Young is a powerback who projects to the FBS level. He possesses good size at 6-foot, 210 pounds. He hits the hole hard with a decent amount of burst and finishes his runs with his physical nature.Young flashes the strength to not only slip through tackles, but run over defenders at the second level. He shows a good spin move that he goes to frequently to make defenders miss in the hole. He's not a top-end burner, so he will need to improve his long speed and overall athleticism.That said, Young is a good between-the-tackles grinder who can also occasionally catch the ball out of the backfield. He doesn’t get a lot of targets in the passing game, but he makes the most of them when he does.Young's size and strength aid him in blitz pickup as well. He’s a wear-you-down back who should be a good second-half ball-carrying option as the opposing defense tires. -- Gabe Brooks, Midlands Recruiting Analyst

Strengths

Power
Instincts
Tackle-breaking ability

Areas to Improve

Breakaway speed
Quick-twitch athleticism

http://www.scout.com/player/204983-daniel-young

DE TAQUON GRAHAM

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 4-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot-3, 251-pounds

High School: Temple (Texas)

Scout.com Rank: No. 147

Position Rank: No. 12

Texas DE Rank: No. 3

Scout.com Analysis 

Taquon Graham gets after the quarterback and puts a ton of pressure on the offensive backfield. He is a new-age weapon at the positon that is able to slide around and confuse offensive coordinators and offensive linemen from where he will be bringing pressure. Look for him to be a guy who can put his hand on the ground as a true defensive end, but can also stand up as a linebacker as well. He runs extremely well in the open field. - Greg Powers, Scout.com National Recruiting Analyst.

Strengths

Athleticism

Pass-rushing skills

Suddenness

Areas to Improve

Leverage

High School Stats - Gabe Brooks, Scout.com Midlands Recruiting Analyst

2016: Graham helped Temple to the Texas Class 5A Division I state title game and a 12-4 record. He recorded 50 tackles, 15 tackles for loss, and 11 sacks.2015: As a junior, Graham posted big numbers with 62 tackles, 23 tackles for loss, 11 1/2 sacks, and three forced fumbles.2014: Graham got his first extended action as a sophomore, when he registered 37 tackles, seven tackles for loss, four sacks, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery. He helped Temple to a 13-2 record and a Texas Class 5A Division state runner-up finish.

http://www.scout.com/player/195794-taquon-graham

WR DAMION MILLER

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 4-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot-1, 193-pounds

High School: John Tyler (Texas)

Scout.com National Rank: No. 154

Position Rank: No. 22

Texas WR Rank: No. 6

Scout.com Analysis 

Damion Miller is a big-time receiver prospect who projects to the high-major level in college. Above average size and good speed make for tough matchup, especially in man coverage. Accelerates well in short areas, impressively so for long-striding WR. Adjusts well to ball in flight. Threat in red zone w/verified 36-inch vertical. A bit raw. Will need to add strength, but possesses frame to do so. Plenty of time for young WR to develop further. - Gabe Brooks, Scout.com Midlands Recruiting Analyst.

Strengths

Downfield threat
Running ability
Body control

Areas to Improve

Strength

HIGH SCHOOL CAREER:

In a three-year varsity career for storied East Texas program John Tyler, Miller caught 108 passes for 2,448 yards and 25 touchdowns on an outstanding 22.7 yards per reception. In his final two seasons, he played safety as well, registering 70 tackles, two interceptions, one forced fumble, nine pass breakups, and a field-goal block.2016: John Tyler made the jump to Texas Class 6A, but Miller helped JT go 11-2 and reach the third round of the playoffs. He caught 41 passes for 922 yards and eight touchdowns on 22.5 yards per reception. He also ran once for 14 yards. Defensively, Miller recorded 47 tackles, two interceptions, six pass breakups, and a field-goal block.2015: As a junior, Miller caught 41 passes for a team-leading 912 yards and nine touchdowns on an impressive 22.2 yards per catch, while rushing three times for 25 yards. Miller also played some defense, recording 23 tackles, one forced fumble, and three pass breakups.2014: Miller enjoyed a breakout sophomore season with 26 catches for 614 yards and eight touchdowns, averaging 23.6 yards per catch as he helped John Tyler High School to a state semifinal appearance in Texas' Class 5A Division I.

http://www.scout.com/player/195350-damion-miller

ILB GARY JOHNSON

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 4-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot-1, 225-pounds

JUCO: Dodge City (Kan.)

Scout.com JUCO Rank: No. 3

http://www.scout.com/player/202993-gary-johnson/

ATH MONTRELL ESTELL

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 4-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot-2, 180-pounds

High School: Hooks (Texas)

Position Rank: No. 30

Texas ATH Rank: No. 4

Scout.com Analysis 

A multi-talented prospect who can impact a game in all three phases, Montrell Estell is one of the top "athlete" prospects in the state of Texas for the 2017 class. Estell possesses great frame potential thanks to his 6-foot-2, 180-pound size as he has plenty of space to bulk up at the next level. Estell is a threat to score as a ball-carrier, receiver, defensive back, and return man. His wingspan, leaping ability, and overall athleticism allow him to cover a ton of territory from the safety position. He has great ball skills and his ability to run after the catch/interception make him a big play waiting to happen. He can also deliver the big hit when needed and packs a punch once he's rolling downhill. Estell has good short-area athleticism for a taller, longer player. He's a long-striding galloper with good long speed. If he plays defense in college, he'll need to tweak the technical aspects of his game, such as turn-and-run ability and backpedal, though as a safety he won't need to be cornerback-caliber in those areas. Estell will also make a significant jump in competition from Texas' Class 3A to the P5 level, but he's the type of raw talent with a ton of upside who can thrive once he's made the adjustment. - Gabe Brooks, Scout.com Midlands Recruiting Analyst.

Strengths

Instincts
Frame
Coverage awareness (defense)
Downfield threat (offense)

Areas to Improve

Backpedal quickness
Hip flexibility/fluidity

High School Stats 

2016: Estell once again starred on both sides of the ball at the Texas Class 3A level. He gained 1,503 yards from scrimmage and scored 21 total touchdowns. He ran for 875 yards and 15 touchdowns on 11.8 yards per carry, and caught 29 passes for 628 yards and six TD's. Defensively, Estell recorded 107 tackles, two interceptions, three forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, one defensive TD, and two pass breakups.2015: As a junior, Estell earned first-team all-state recognition on the defensive side of the ball with 69 tackles, six interceptions, and three defensive touchdowns. Offensively, Estell accounted for 902 yards from scrimmage. He caught 28 passes for 490 yards and five touchdowns, while rushing for 412 yards and four scores on 12.4 yards per carry.

http://www.scout.com/player/199833-montrell-estell

QB SAM EHLINGER

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 4-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot-1.5, 215-pounds

High School: Westlake (Texas)

Scout.com National Rank: No. 130

Position Rank: No. 8

Texas QB Rank: No. 2

Scout.com Analysis 

Sam Ehlinger is a consistent and productive quarterback in Texas HS football's largest class who projects to the high-major level. Best trait = accuracy. Consistently hits receivers in right spots, especially on short/intermediate routes. Great touch/accuracy on downfield patterns outside numbers. Quick release. Good velocity. Commands his offense as obvious alpha. Lacks ideal size. Athletic enough to be dangerous runner when play breaks down. - Gabe Brooks, Scout.com Midlands Recruiting Analyst.

Strengths

Accuracy
Consistency
Field vision
Poise and leadership

Areas to Improve

Injury history
Size

HIGH SCHOOL CAREER

Despite a senior campaign that saw him suffer multiple injuries that cost him several games, Ehlinger finished his career at Texas Class 6A-leve Austin Westlake with 9,233 total yards of offense and 113 total touchdowns. He threw for 6,973 yards, 81 TD's, and only 13 interceptions, while rushing for 2,260 yards and 32 TD's on 5.1 yards per carry.2016: An injury-riddled senior season for Ehlinger ended with him accounting for 1,018 yards in limited action. He threw for 840 yards, seven touchdowns, and two INT's, while rushing for 178 yards and three scores.2015: Ehlinger led Austin Westlake to a 14-2 record and the Texas Class 6A Division I state championship game, where Westlake fell in overtime to Galena Park North Shore. Ehlinger finished the season with 3,833 passing yards, 50 touchdown throws, and only five interceptions. He also ran for 1,360 yards and 20 touchdowns to give him 5,193 total yards of offense and 70 total touchdowns.2014: As a sophomore, Ehlinger threw for 2,300 yards, 24 touchdowns, and six interceptions, while rushing for 722 yards and nine touchdowns on 5.3 yards per carry.

http://www.scout.com/player/193884-sam-ehlinger

RB TONEIL CARTER

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 4-Star

Height, Weight: 5-foot-11, 197-pounds

High School: Langham Creek (Texas)

Scout.com National Rank: No. 120

Position Rank: No. 12

Texas RB Rank: No. 3

Scout.com Analysis 

Toneil Carter Jr. is a special runner who has shown an ability from a young age to be a difference maker. Carter has a nice blend of skills. He has the size to be able to run through arm tackles and shows good burst to make defenders miss. He has good top-end speed and solid track speed (10.87 100-meter) and it shows on tape as he is able to take runs the distance once he gets a crease. Carter is a middle of the field runner and when he gets a seam he hits the gas pedal and gets up the field quickly, wasting little time to get positive yards and break big plays. He is better running north and south, but does show the ability to stop and go to extend plays and dodge defenders. - Greg Powers, Scout.com National Recruiting Analyst.

Strengths

Breakaway speed
Instincts
Vision

Areas to Improve

Elusiveness

HIGH SCHOOL CAREER

With three full varsity seasons and part of another for Texas Class 6A-level Langham Creek in Houston, Carter finished his high school career with 3,857 rushing yards and 57 touchdowns. - Gabe Brooks, Scout.com Midlands Recruiting Analyst.2016: Carter ran for 1,114 yards and 18 touchdowns on 7.2 yards per rush during his senior season.2015: As a junior, Carter ran for 1,216 yards and 18 touchdowns on 8.9 yards to earn 17-6A first team all-district honors.2014: Carter ran for 1,373 yards and 19 touchdowns on 7.3 yards per carry during a breakout sophomore season.2013: Carter's varsity debut came during his freshman year, when he ran for 154 yards and two touchdowns on 4.5 yards per carry.

http://www.scout.com/player/188089-toneil-carter

K JOSHUA ROWLAND

Inside the Numbers 

Star Rating: 2-Star

Height, Weight: 5-foot-10, 180-pounds

JUCO: Mississippi Gulf Coast C.C.

http://www.scout.com/player/205540-joshua-rowland

WR JORDAN POUNCEY

Inside the Numbers

Star Rating: 3-Star

Height, Weight: 6-foot-3, 186-pounds

High School: Winter Park (Fla.)

Position Rank: No. 68

Florida WR Rank No. 10 

Scout.com Analysis 

Jordan Pouncey's length and physical makeup for the wide receiver position are obvious, but he also displays nice acceleration and burst once reeling in the catch and getting his pads north and south. Pouncey is also a mismatch problem with his ability to stretch and get behind defenses, but running crisper routes is something he can continue to season up moving forward. You also have to take notice of Pouncey's ability to track the football through the air while maintaining body control, so it's easy to understand why schools are itching to get their hands on the pass catcher. Great frame and running ability for a 6-foot-3 receiver.

http://www.scout.com/player/187828-jordan-pouncey


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