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4-star CG DJ Steward names Texas in Final 8

One of Shaka Smart’s priority targets has named the Longhorns in his top group.

247Sports: Jody Demling

Shaka Smart and his staff remain in pursuit of their first pledge of the 2020 cycle, and they’re now one small step closer to that goal, as Chicago (Ill.) Whitney Young combo guard DJ Steward named the Texas Longhorns in his final eight on Thursday.

DePaul, Duke, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa State, Louisville, and North Carolina were named as finalists, as well.

The four-star talent has held a Texas offer since early January, and interest between the two sides has, of course, been mutual. In mid-April, Smart conducted an in-home visit with the top talent Illinois has to offer, per the 247Sports Composite. Several weeks later, Steward returned the favor in the form of an official visit to Austin on June 7.

Nevertheless, the Longhorns appear to have plenty of work to do in hopes of potentially landing the top 30 national prospect.

Beyond Steward’s remaining recruiting featuring a few college basketball blue bloods, Duke is currently considered the heavy favorite for his services, owning each of Steward’s six Crystal Ball picks, despite him holding an offer from the Blue Devils for only a few weeks.

Can Texas overcome the current odds and land the nation’s No. 6 combo guard?