Instant analysis: What if. What if. What if Major Applewhite can't coach running backs? What if the running of Alabama is an appeal to Cibolo Steele RB Malcolm Brown? What if Texas will never land another top tailback prospect in the history of ever? What if Brandon Williams is AD v. 2.0 and the love affair is again from afar? What if there are no native Texan roots to keep Brown in Texas?
Not if, now. Texas. Malcolm Brown to Texas. Gimme. Got.
Quiet the insecurities. Pacify the fanbase. Set aside the Chris Whaley fiasco, failed evaluation. If not five years of failure in recruiting at the running back position, something either closely approximating it or as yet unresolved, undecided.
A savior? No. An answer among many. Quarterback. Scheme. Westerman Flowers Greenlea Cochran Hutchins Doyle Espinosa Hopkins. Matthews and Bergeron. McFarland.
The ability to impose upon the opponent the will of the offensive line, the running back, the ticking clock and fatigue. Mack Brown football. Will Muschamp football, too.
So maybe not a savior, but what looks like the final piece of the puzzle in the narrative. An end to calls about Applewhite not being able to recruit the position. Of failures in scheme trickling down to the recruiting landscape. Of what happens in 2012 with Johnathan Gray supposing a failure with Brown.
There is no failure, no need for Plan B. Mack Brown and the staff were all in with Brown and it worked.
Instant scouting report: Let's get this out of the way at the start -- this scouting report does not read like the unrequited love affair so many voices in this Longhorn bandbox have sounded for Brandon Williams (Mr. Physical Upside). Me included.
Instead, the toughest question is Brown's physical upside. And here the cynicism of the Texas S&C program rears it's head. A physical dominance that will exist to a much lesser degree in college. No surprise, but still a concern.
Worst case: Is Brown Bulldozer the Second? Vondrell McGee again? In the broken arm tackles perhaps, not in the overall expectations or the talent level but most particularly a fit in the offense moving forward. A fit in the offense never described McGee.
Now to the hype. National top-10 rankings in all the services. Consensus top running back in the country. All the accolades. Production.The ideal back moving forward for Texas moving more downhill. Like I said, I'm not going to mention that other back.
If Brown's not ready to run over a member of the opponents' second level, there is stil enough explosiveness and good enough feet to solve the other problems in high school. I was about to mention that name again -- reminder, this is about Malcolm Brown. And all this discussion almost presupposes the worst case because otherwise Brown will be a star.
As Scipio Tex mentions, he's not a superstar at running behind his pads, but he's no Chris Whaley either. Sorry, Mack. It's mostly mass (210 pounds or more) times acceleration (top speed at the third step or so) and a strong core just behind the shoulders.
Balance -- related to that core strength. Like, elite balance.
Toughness, an aggressive mentality with the football.
Quick through the hole, no nonsense. No jukes, just downhill. Still, underrated feet.
A snug fit for the new scheme.
The question that Scipio Tex is posing is one of whether Brown has physically maximized his talent. The answer seems like no. It's hard to believe that there isn't a little bit more burst waiting for a college S&C program to realize itself. A stiff arm and more runs behind the pads.
In this case, the national rankings speak so strongly about Brown's value that the only criticisms are left for whether he will be able to outrun Iowa State's secondary verus being able to outrun Texas A&M's secondary. Not a big difference, but an important distinction.
Will it be the disinction between good and great? Good and average? Given the whole array of talent, that seems unlikely.
Welcome aboard, Macolm.