With consensus No. 1 defensive tackle Marvin Wilson and a handful of other recruits on campus to watch the Texas Longhorns practice on Tuesday in the lead up to Saturday's Orange-White game, several players turned in standout performances.
Sophomore wide receiver DeAndre McNeal has been one of the positive storylines this spring and continued those efforts, shaking senior safety Kevin Vaccaro badly on one play with an inside-outside move to set up a long gain down the middle of the field. It's the type of play that McNeal made in high school before losing some of that agility that season due to weight gain. On another play, he beat sophomore nickel back PJ Locke in the red zone for a touchdown on an inside-breaking route from senior quarterback Tyrone Swoopes.
The other sophomore with a big day was safety DeShon Elliott, who has been receiving more repetitions recently due to an injury to senior starter Dylan Haines. On one play, Elliott was able to turn and run with junior wide receiver Jake Oliver and come up with an interception. It looks like the pass was thrown by redshirt freshman Kai Locksley, but it didn't quite lead Oliver enough to keep Elliott from making a play on the ball. The hard-hitting Rockwall-Heath product intercepted a tipped pass on a wonderful play by Davante Davis and made a nice stop on junior running back Roderick Bernard for a minimal gain.
Here's a look at how high Davis got with his leap and extension to make that play:
Oliver was later able to beat junior cornerback Antwaun Davis for another touchdown from Swoopes on what was a nicely-thrown ball.
Junior defensive end Charles Omenihu has been attracting some attention for his work at strongside defensive end and while defensive coordinator Vance Bedford hasn't been happy with the pass rush overall, Omenihu did come up with a sack of early enrollee quarterback Shane Buechele on Tuesday.
In other good news, senior defensive tackle Paul Boyette was back at practice after missing some time at spring and made a nice tackle for loss on sophomore running back Chris Warren. There may have been a mix up in the blocking scheme because the center helped on a double team with the left guard and the right guard was occupied with another player at the moment Boyette made the play.
Redshirt freshman Tristian Houston was also in uniform Tuesday, but he spent too much time dancing in the back field on one play and allowed sophomore linebacker Anthony Wheeler to get him in the backfield.
Sophomore cornerback Kris Boyd also beat junior wide receiver Dorian Leonard on a slant route for an interception in one-on-one drills. Boyd doesn't have the height or length of fellow cornerbacks Holton Hill and Davante Davis, but he does have good size and strength, not to mention that characteristic East Texas toughness.
It wasn't all positive for Boyd though, as he was in good coverage against early enrollee wide receiver Collin Johnson down the sideline on one play, but an on-target delivery from Buechele was enough to complete the pass.