After less than two years in Austin, Texas Longhorns cornerback Jermaine Roberts will transfer from the program. Orangebloods first reported the news and Texas officials confirmed it a brief time later.
The 5'9, 168-pounder redshirted after signing with the Longhorns as a member of the 2014 recruiting class for Texas, but then suffered a knee injury last spring that cost him his entire redshirt freshman season and eventually buried him on the depth chart behind a number of talented members of the 2015 class like Holton Hill, Davante Davis, and Kris Boyd.
With 2016 Under Armour All-American Eric Cuffee pledged in the 2016 cycle, the path to playing time was not going to get any easier for Roberts, who is quite undersized compared to the taller, longer cornerbacks that head coach Charlie Strong prefers to employ in his defensive schemes.
When Roberts came to Texas out of New Orleans (La.) St. Augustine High School, he was also an Under Armour All-American and a consensus three-star player ranked as the No. 405 player nationally, the No. 35 cornerback, and the No. 19 player in the state of Louisiana, according to the 247Sports Composite rankings. He held 15 offers, including scholarships to Alabama, Florida State, Kentucky, Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Texas A&M, and UCLA.
Despite his lack of size, there were some high hopes for Roberts as a playmaker upon his arrival at Texas, as he recorded 15 interceptions over his last two seasons at St. Augustine, including two touchdown returns. He also returned a fumble for a touchdown and three kickoffs for touchdowns over that span.
His expected destination is Sam Houston State, according to Orangebloods.
As always, expect some further attrition during the spring and summer, especially at defensive back, as several other older players like safety Adrian Colbert and cornerback Bryson Echols were also passed on the depth chart by youngsters.