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Texas twins Armanti and D'Onta Foreman ready to break out

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Now bigger and faster, the Texas City products could be tough to handle for Horns opponents this season.

Brendan Maloney-USA TODAY Sports

With the Texas Longhorns searching for playmakers on offense, sophomores Armanti and D'Onta Foreman look poised to emerge as major contributors.

The twins both played sparingly last season -- 6'0, 241-pound D'Onta carried the ball 16 times and caught one pass before a wrist injury kept him out of the last two games, while 5'11, 204-pound Armanti flashed a bit more with 10 catches for 188 yards and two touchdowns, as well as two carries for 41 yards.

The two came as a package deal in recruiting, with the Longhorns winning out over a number of other high-profile programs for Armanti because D'Onta held far fewer offers -- Houston, Illinois, Kansas State, Missouri, Utah, and Washington State were the only other schools interested in his services.

Considered a consensus low three-star prospect out of high school and the No. 67 running back, according to the 247Sports Composite, D'Onta is could quickly prove himself to be a major steal in recruiting this season if he can fulfill his potential. As a senior, he ran for 1,891 yards and 28 touchdowns, with a number of impressive plays that fully showcased his skill set.

Regardless of the competition level, his explosiveness in the open field is only slightly less impressive than his balance and toughness to break all those tackles.

Now the back up to senior Johnathan Gray, D'Onta could provide a valuable change of pace because of his combination of size and speed. When the Horns staff decided to have the players run 40-yard dashes, the bigger Foreman reportedly posted a sub-4.4 time.

Assistant head coach for offense/quarterbacks coach Shawn Watson really likes what D'Onta and freshman Chris Warren III bring to the table for Texas, so he has a great deal of confidence in them now.

"It's sky high," he said. "I love those two guys. I've always been a fan of the big back. I had Chris Brown there at Colorado. I had Brandon Jackson there at Nebraska. We had our kids we had there at Louisville. I love wearing people out with big backs. These guys both carry their pads really well. They're explosive. They make you hurt when they tackle. They'll wear you out. They're just really great young talents, both of them, and they've both had really good camps."

D'Onta's breakout fall camp pushed his twin brother to continue to emerge, according to head coach Charlie Strong.

"I think that what has really helped him is D'Onta, where his brother has come on, and he's playing well," Strong said. "So now you can see with both of those guys, and you look at two twins, they're both seeing that they are contributing, and they're having a lot of fun."

Emerging late in the regular season to catch touchdown passes of 45 yards against Oklahoma State and 73 yards against TCU on a simple screen pass was probably a little bit of fun for Armanti.

Listed at 189 pounds as a freshman, he's gained 15 pounds of muscle and it's made a big difference in his ability to play outside -- he's now the starting flanker on the depth chart, with senior Marcus Johnson moving inside to the slot.

"Armanti, even through the summer conditioning came in and got a lot bigger and a lot stronger, and the only thing he does when he gets bigger and stronger, his speed, the thing, he's got a lot faster," said Strong.

So not only is Armanti now more capable of beating press coverage on the outside because he's bigger than most cornerbacks, he could be even more explosive. And he was plenty explosive last season -- all it took was one mistake from a TCU defensive back to spring him into the open field and the end zone on that 73-yard catch and run.

"But a guy that can make plays, and a guy that can stretch the defense," Strong said. "He has so much speed. I don't know if he really realizes how fast he is because sometimes Tyrone will lay a ball out, and you don't think he'll go get it, and all of a sudden he runs underneath it."

Even if Armanti doesn't know how fast is, as long as junior quarterback Tyrone Swoopes does and can put enough air under the ball, the Horns could find a deep threat on the outside to replace John Harris.

Strong doesn't want the quarterbacks to fill like they have to win games on their own and the Foreman twins emerging to consistently make plays could provide a major boost to the Texas offense.