Senior Texas Longhorns wide receiver DeSean Hales has decided to give up football in an effort to better focus on graduating. The fifth-year senior will stay involved as a student coach for the team.
The Klein Oak product entered the program as part of the 2008 class rated as a four-star prospect and as the top all-purpose back in the country, according to Rivals. He held a handful of offers from Big 12 powers, as well as Georgia.
On paper, his combination of speed and explosiveness, despite his small stature, were always a tantalizing combination, even as far back as 2009, when this author wrote in this space that he could be a home-run threat for Texas in a role similar to that previously occupied by Ramonce Taylor in Austin.
Even last fall, there was some thought, again in this space, that Hales could supplement or usurp DJ Monroe's role on the jet sweep after Hales practiced there during fall camp. Still, nothing. Hales finished his career with no carries and only two catches for 10 yards as a fourth-year junior, despite numerous injuries to the wide receiving corps.
Hales finished his career with 13 receptions for 87 yards, but numerous touchdowns and big plays in spring games over the years that teased as much as his famous run in high school:
DESEAN HALES : THE RUN (via jclancy32)
Sadly, Hales never even came close to replicating that type of play at Texas.
Here's what he had to say about his decision:
Coming to this decision wasn't easy, but I've talked to my family and have decided that it would be best for me to focus on my degree and my career for the future. Football doesn't last forever, and I feel like I could be a help to the team in other ways outside of playing. I always knew that eventually I would like to work with young people, whether it's coaching or training or in some other way, and this will give me the experience of doing that. I've been in the system.
Best of luck to Hales helping to the team this season and in his future endeavors.