The recruitment of former LSU Tigers quarterback Brandon Harris by Texas Longhorns head coach Tom Herman when he was the offensive coordinator for the Ohio State Buckeyes will apparently pay off for the ‘Horns.
According to the a report from the Baton Rouge Advocate, Harris said Saturday evening that Texas is one of four schools that he will visit, including Arizona and North Carolina. He declined to name the other school.
Texas currently has only three scholarship quarterbacks on campus with 2017 signee Sam Ehlinger enrolled early, so Harris would provide ideal depth and keep Herman and his staff from having to consider installing a package of 8-10 plays for current wide receiver Jerrod Heard.
The previous relationship with Herman should continue to help the Longhorns if Harris makes the visit as planned, but the competition at Texas could dissuade the planned graduate transfer.
Sophomore Shane Buechele started every game last season as a true freshman and both he and Ehlinger will have the full spring and summer to learn the offense. Harris, however, would plans on graduating during the summer, so he might not get on the campus of his choice until preseason camp begins.
As a result of his late graduation and only having one year of eligibility remaining, he may prefer a program that has less competition for the starting job.
North Carolina would certainly represent that opportunity — starter Mitch Trubisky is off the NFL and last season’s back up, Celina product Nathan Elliott, attempted only nine passes in 2016 as a redshirt freshman. The Tar Heels also failed to sign a quarterback in the 2017 class.
The situation in Arizona is perhaps more appealing than Texas, but less appealing than North Carolina, as the Wildcats started junior Brandon Dawkins in nine of 12 games last season. However, Dawkins didn’t perform particularly well in throwing for eight touchdowns and six interceptions. Sophomore Khalil Tate wasn’t much better in limited appearances.
Harris started 15 games for the Tigers during his career and at times flashed the potential that made him the consensus No. 3 dual-threat quarterback in the 2014 class.