With two adorable tiger cubs around the Texas Longhorns football facilities on Tuesday, it was quite the day for Aldine Macarthur defensive end Isaiah Chambers to take an unofficial visit to Austin:
@Esta_Guapo & Good Friend Look Like Two Proud #Longhorns at #UT #HookEm #LetsRide into #NewEra Guys #HornsUp pic.twitter.com/JH92Hrq6P6— Jawaun Lee (@Audi23Jl) June 3, 2015
The 6'4, 252-pounder had a chance to interact with Bonnie and Clyde, the two tiger cubs, but eventually removed the picture from his Instagram page. There were also plenty of current players and 2015 signees around Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium on Tuesday.
The more significant element of his visit is that he took the opportunity to trip to Texas only four days after receiving a pretty late offer from the Longhorns, an indication of interest despite the long wait -- definitely a positive sign for the Longhorns staff.
Chambers was one of only three top-20 Texas prospects without a Horns offer entering last week, even though he's ranked as the No. 88 recruit overall, the No. 7 strongside defensive end, and the No. 12 player in Texas. As expected for a top-100 recruit, Chambers holds 26 offers, including Arizona State, Arkansas, Baylor, Florida State, Georgia, Houston, Miami, Michigan, Michigan State, Missouri, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Oregon, TCU, Texas A&M, and Washington.
Throw in the fact that he produced 32 tackles for loss and 21 sacks as a junior and everything matches up with Chambers in considering him a near-elite prospects -- the rankings, the offers, and the production.
Chambers visited Baylor and TCU during the spring after taking in a Junior Day in College Station. Two trips for games last fall help provide further optimism about Texas A&M eventually landing the state's No. 2 strongside defensive end.
Texas should have plenty of time to make a further impression on the Houston-area product, as he plans on making his decision close to National Signing Day. Playing time will factor into his decision and Texas will lose likely strong end Shiro Davis after this season, leaving junior college transfer Quincy Vasser and junior Bryce Cottrell as the main contenders for that role -- so there could be some appeal there. However, the staff will have to make up for lost time in building a relationship with Chambers, who didn't even know who his area recruiter was back in March.
Since the Horns currently have six offers out to strongside defensive end, there's not a shortage of options, but Chambers is probably one of about three key targets there, along with McKinney North's Justin Madubuike and Denham Springs (La.) rising prospect Caleb Roddy, who recently said that Arkansas is no longer his leader. Madubuike and Chambers are similar prospects in terms of rankings, so if head coach Charlie Strong and company can land one of the two, it would make for a successful cycle at that position.