Most junior college recruiting doesn't start in earnest until the summer or the fall, but the Texas Longhorns extended a Wednesday offer to Iowa Western CC wide receiver Taj Williams, joining a host of other programs.
The official Reivers account also lists Arizona State, Auburn, Illinois, and Toledo as other suitors, so Texas is getting in early on what could eventually be a substantial offer list for the 6'3, 180-pounder.
Other than joining his recruitment early, the Horns could have another advantage with Williams -- he played in high school with 2015 Texas signee John Burt at Tallahassee (Fla.) Lincoln, where he was a consensus four-star prospect with a number of major offers, though he eventually signed with Indiana before failing to qualify.
It didn't take Williams long to adjust to the junior college level, however -- he hauled in 77 catches for 945 yards and 11 touchdowns during his freshman season.
What makes him so appealing so early in the junior college recruiting process? Williams is a pure vertical threat with impressive top-end speed that allows him to separate from slower defensive backs. Perhaps more impressive is the fact that he operates with short, choppy strides that belie his overall height and allow him to change direction with alacrity. As a result, he can get in an out and breaks quickly and can make opponents miss in the opponent to create big plays out of short or intermediate gains.
In the red zone, his combination of quickness on slants and big body on fade routes makes him difficult to stop and provides further value -- he can play bigger than his 180 pounds in the red zone, but is also a major threat in the open field.
His offer represents an interesting development because it signals that the Longhorns are willing to take at least three wide receivers in the 2015 class.
San Jose (Calif.) Valley Christian's Collin Johnson and Manvel's Reggie Hemphill are the two current wide receiver commits and make up two-thirds of the 2016 Texas class at this time, joining Gilmer linebacker Demarco Boyd.