According to report from Rivals recruiting analyst Woody Wommack, the Texas Longhorns are one of several teams in contact with Clemson Tigers graduate transfer running back Tavien Feaster, who announced his intentions to leave the program in late April.
Alabama, East Carolina, Mississippi State, Oklahoma, and Virginia Tech have also reached out to the 5’11, 220-pounder from South Carolina.
Feaster is an ideal graduate transfer target — he was once ranked as the No. 29 prospect in the 2016 class and was productive at Clemson with 1,330 rushing yards and 15 touchdowns on 222 carries and 23 receptions for 183 yards and one touchdown. He’s explosive, too, scoring on an 89-yard touchdown run in 2017.
Now he’s simply looking for an opportunity to gain more playing time.
The news comes after a productive spring for the Texas running game, as head coach Tom Herman said that the rushing attack had more explosive plays in the first 14 practices than the entire team had last season.
Sophomore Keaontay Ingram put on weight and demonstrated growth as a runner, while early enrollee Jordan Whittington transitioned to the position from wide receiver more quickly than even the coaches anticipated. Even oft-injured senior Kirk Johnson managed to avoid the leg injuries that have kept him from receiving a carry in a game since 2015.
So the position looks like it’s in better shape than it was on National Signing Day, when Herman expressed confidence in the situation.
“We’ll look, you know,” Herman said. “Obviously the success that Tre had last season, I hope makes us attractive spot for those kind of guys. It’s going to have to be the right guy to take a grad transfer, because we feel good about the experience level of that room.”
However, the future of 2019 signee Derrian Brown is in question after suffering a stroke several months ago and two players, Kyle Porter and Tristian Houston, transferred out after last season — there isn’t quite ideal depth there.
One big question is whether Feaster sees the situation as appealing enough to take an official visit to Austin and seriously consider the Longhorns, as the rise of Whittington is a significant development there. Still, as Herman mentioned, Watson’s success integrating into the offense is a selling point for Texas, in addition to the staff’s preference to share carries among at least two backs to keep players from getting worn down throughout the season.
Whittington doesn’t exactly seem like a question mark after his big spring, but he hasn’t done it in a game yet and Feaster is an extremely appealing option, so keep an eye on this situation, as the Longhorns could become a player for him. It is notable, however, that no members of the staff follow him currently — this is still in the early stages.