The Texas Longhorns are not entirely out of the mix with top-ranked running back Zachary Evans.
In late May, the five-star Houston North Shore star left the Longhorns outside of his top five list, but nevertheless, he’s returning to the Forty Acres on Thursday for an unofficial visit, as first reported by Orangebloods’ and later confirmed by Mike Craven of the Austin American-Statesman.
BREAKING NEWS: According to OB's @OB_JasonS , Northshore running back Zach Evans is making an unofficial visit to Texas on Thursday— Orangebloods.com (@OBWire) June 20, 2019
Prior to Evans excluding Texas from his top five, which featured Ohio State, Alabama, LSU, Oklahoma, and Georgia, the Longhorns were arguably the team to beat, and understandably so, as Evans had been a mainstay in Austin throughout his recruitment.
Nevertheless, despite his apparent interest in the program, the issue as far as Evan was concerned is that he simply didn’t see the Longhorns as championship contenders at the moment.
“It’s just … you don’t know how to put it,” Evans told 247Sports’ Chris Hummer of his decision to leave the Longhorns from his top list. “I don’t want to be disrespectful. I ain’t saying (Texas) can’t win a natty. It’s just at the moment [Texas is] not quite there. You beat Georgia but you barely beat Georgia. What about when it comes to a Bama or go to a Clemson?
”Texas is a good school, they coming up,” Evans added. “It’s just ... I don’t know.”
In the aftermath of Evans initially trimming Texas from his recruitment, five-star Tucson (Az.) Salpointe Catholic running back Bijan Robinson, who’s set to officially visit Austin this weekend, emerged as the priority at the position, and the interest is mutual, as Robinson reportedly named the Longhorns his leader in an Instagram live feed.
However, in the world of college football recruiting, it isn’t over until pen meets paper, and Texas appears to be benefitting from that reality with one of the nation’s top overall talents returning to Austin on Thursday.
That said, this time around, if Texas is set to re-emerge as a legitimate factor in Evans’ recruitment, there’s now the added chore of recruiting around Evans’ teammate, three-star offensive tackle Damieon George’s recent commitment to Alabama, as the two have remained adamant about becoming a package deal.
In any case, that’s a chore that the Texas staff considers to be worth the work put forth, and for good reason, as Evans is not only an elite prospect at a priority position this cycle, but the sixth-best talent in the entire class, per the 247Sports Composite.