Before the weekend, there weren’t any significant signs that Draper (Utah) Corner Canyon defensive end Van Fillinger was on the Texas Longhorns recruiting radar. Following an unexpected unofficial visit to Austin, however, the 6’3.5, 250-pounder is now officially a target after picking up an offer:
Fillinger put on more than 15 pounds this spring and vaulted nearly 550 spots in the 247Sports Composite rankings in late February, making the Utah product the type of prospect the Longhorns like to target at this point in the recruiting cycle — rising recruits whose offer lists may be more impressive than their rankings.
With 17 schools officially in pursuit, Fillinger is now more than just a regional recruit, as he holds offers from LSU, Michigan, Oregon, UCLA, USC, and Utah, which make up his top group. He’s recently taken unofficial visits to Eugene and Columbus — Ohio State has also offered — and took an official visit to LSU in late April.
According to Jason Suchomel of Orangebloods, Fillinger plans on using an official visit to Austin, too, perhaps in the near future. A consensus three-star prospect, Fillinger is ranked as the No. 489 player nationally, the No. 23 strong-side defensive end, and the No. 4 player in Utah, according to the 247Sports Composite rankings.
During Fillinger’s junior season, he recorded 71 tackles and five sacks, but with his increase in size, expect more production during his senior season. In testing at a regional for The Opening in May, Fillinger measured in at his currently listed height and weight while posting a 4.25 shuttle that showcased his high-level agility. His vertical leap also tested at a solid 31.7 inches at 250 pounds.
Texas is solidly positioned to finish with several key defensive line targets, but adding Fillinger to the radar and impressing him enough to land a planned official visit soon gives position coach Oscar Giles a little bit more margin for error as he attempts to piece the 2020 recruiting class together.