After a disappointing sophomore season that featured only 11 catches, Texas Longhorns junior wide receiver Armanti Foreman needed a strong spring to create some separation from a deep wide receiver corps that will add speedy Davion Curtis to the mix this summer. On Saturday, Foreman did exactly that, recording six catches for 81 yards and a touchdown in Orange and White game, showing off more reliable hands and route-running skills than he has in the past.
In fact, Foreman's 27-yard touchdown catch from early enrollee quarterback Shane Beuchele was one of the highlights of the scrimmage, which ended after the first half:
And it didn't come easily either, as the touchdown was one of several catches that the 5'11, 209-pounder made against sophomore cornerback Holton Hill, an emerging star who could end up making a case as an All-Conference player this season. In the process, Foreman solidified himself as the team's No. 3 receiver behind sophomore John Burt and early enrollee Collin Johnson.
When Foreman came out of Texas City in the 2014 class he was supposed to make a quick and profound impact as a consensus four-star prospect and near top-100 prospect in the 247Sports Composite rankings. However, things never quite clicked for him over his first two seasons, though he likely didn't benefit from the overall offensive incompetency during that stretch.
Meanwhile, his twin brother D'Onta, who was a two-star recruit by Rivals despite a monster senior season, found his role in the offense and emerged as a breakout star in 2015 with his game-sealing run against Oklahoma
Make no mistake, Armanti is happy for his brother, but he told redshirt freshman quarterback Kai Locksley on Twitter this spring that "people don't know how much that bother me that he had a better season." He vowed not to let it happen again.
Head coach Charlie Strong sometimes worries a bit that Armanti does let his twin brother's success impact him, and not in a positive way.
"Don't let his success affect you," Strong has told him in the past. "You just continue to get better."
Avoiding any impact from D'Onta's success may be difficult for Armanti given that his twin brother looks poised to build on his 681 rushing yards and five touchdowns in a offense that will better feature his skills. However, it is a significant development that Armanti appears to be on the right track for the first time in a while.
"Armanti is working hard, and he's doing a really good job," head coach Charlie Strong said after the Orange and White game.
The problem is that he still gets down on himself sometimes, according to Strong, especially when he has a practice without many passes thrown in his direction.
"Get your head up," Strong tells him in those situations. "The ball is not always going to come out to you."
If the pass-catching half of the Foreman duo can maintain his mental toughness in those situations, he should have a chance to fulfill all that potential that made him so much more highly recruited than his brother out of high school. The Orange and White game was certainly a positive -- and needed -- step in that direction.