Torrodney Prevot commits to USC. After some confusion during the month of July about whether or not the Longhorns were in the top group of schools for 2013 Alief Taylor defensive end Torrodney Prevot, it was no surprise to see the 6-4, 200-pounder commit to a different school.
The mild surprise was that the Trojans ended up winning out, putting them at 18 commitments in the class and maxing them out as they pursue Penn State running back Silas Redd -- if they do take Redd, they would have to drop another commitment, which could be bad news for a guy like Eldridge Massington, the West Mesquite product who was on the Texas radar but never received an offer, as he injured his ACL working out at a Tennessee camp, something that the Trojan staff did not likely look favorably upon.
But, back to Prevot -- Texas A&M seemed like the probable leader due to proximity, multiple visits taken there, and recruiting efforts by friends Hardreck Walker and Reggie Chevis, both current commits, as well as LSU, a school he had spoken favorably about recently because he could see himself as another Barkevious Mingo.
As it regards Texas, it isn't clear that the Longhorns were actively pursuing him recently, and despite some talk of making visits to Austin throughout the spring and summer, they never materialized, even though Prevot grew up a Longhorn fan. Something was going on there that never really become public, though what exactly that was isn't known.
Following the decommitment of Daeshon Hall, the loss of Prevot leaves Texas without a committed defensive end in the 2013 class, though Jake Raulerson will begin his career there as a jumbo power end (he'll likely report north of 270 pounds).
So where the 'Horns go from here? Possible target Dajaun Drennon wasn't able to visit after the World Championship completed and then committed to North Carolina roughly a week ago, joining a high school teammate who switched his pledge from Penn State. With that connection, Texas may not have been a serious factor even with an offer, but what would have been the harm in trying?
It's probably too late to get in on any blue-chip national players at this point, which would leave Texas continuing to evaluate in-state players in the hopes that someone blows up during the fall. Either that or poaching someone like Dimarya Mixon from West Mesquite (who is a strongside defensive end) or Alief Taylor's Ogbonnia Okoronkwo from Alief Taylor, an Oklahoma State commit who probably has a better frame than his teammate Prevot.
Anthony Fera visits Texas. According to multiple reports, Penn State kicker Anthony Fera did indeed make a trip to Austin on Sunday, presumably meeting with the Texas coaching staff. Hookem.com reported on Sunday evening ($) that Fera has an offer from the Longhorns, confirming interest from the Texas side -- all that was really required, as the fact that the kicker and his family made the journey from Houston was a strong indication of their interest.
All that's left now is for Fera to take some time and come to a decision. The open nature of the competition for all three kicking jobs, the family connections after Fera's older sisters went to Texas, and the fact that Texas was never going to pursue a scholarship kicker in his class (which means that the Longhorns didn't exactly pass on him) all are in favor of Texas.
It's understandable if he decides that his loyalty lies at Penn State despite the fact that he won't be able to play in a bowl game there again. Add in the trajectory that Texas is likely on, with a chance to compete for a national championship in 2013 if things fall in place, and things start to look pretty rosy for the Longhorns to add what could be a crucial piece to that potential Rose Bowl run.
Open practices likely to be closed this fall. A subscriber on the Hookem.com board was in attendance at the San Antonio Longhorn Club Kickoff luncheon ($). There wasn't a lot of breaking news, except for the fact that Mack Brown indicated he is leaning towards closing fall practices for a second consecutive fall after opening two in the spring.
Brown cited the recent blow-up over the David Ash hamstring injury and instant social media hurting what the team can do in those practices. For everyone wanting to cover such practices, get a look at the team, and simply have some access to the program, it represents further frustration and will only fuel a reasonably substantial segment of the media irritated by the tactics of Mack Brown and the Texas SID compared to programs that allow more access.
Instead of the rant that I had originally written here, I'm simply going to express my disappointment about not being able to see the team in action prior to the start of the season and note that it's understandable that Brown doesn't want to let people see his team practice, but I don't necessarily agree with his reasoning.
All that assuming that Brown does indeed close practices.
Longhorns in the Olympics. Sunday was a good day for Longhorns in London, as swimmer Brendan Hansen took home a bronze medal in the 100m breaststroke, while Kevin Durant helped Team USA to a resounding victory over France with 22 points and nine rebounds in his official Olympic debut. Durant and his teammates will take the court again on Tuesday for pool play against Tunisia.
On Monday, former 'Horn Destinee Hooker and the women's volleyball team will be in action, with a few more Texas athletes in action on Tuesday as swimmers Kathleen Hershey and Ricky Berens compete. For those wondering, the men's long jump will start on Friday.