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Longhorns land pledge from 4-star 2021 OLB Derrick Harris Jr.

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Texas’ 2021 class continues to gain momentum with the addition of talented in-state linebacker Derrick Harris Jr.

247Sports: Brian Perroni

The Texas Longhorns have added yet another piece to what’s rapidly blossoming into a monster 2021 recruiting haul, as New Caney outside linebacker Derrick Harris Jr. announced his commitment to Tom Herman’s program on Saturday.

The four-star talent has held a Texas offer for only a handful of weeks, earning his scholarship invitation after camping with the Longhorns in mid-June. Harris has since returned to the Forty Acres just days ago on July 26 for Texas major recruiting weekend, and in the aftermath of that trip, numerous Crystal Ball picks flooded in projecting Harris to pick the Horns.

Texas A&M was also a major factor in Harris’ recruitment.

247Sports Gabe Brooks detailed what kind of talent the Longhorns landed in Harris:

“Lean, long-framed athlete with ample space to add bulk. Displays impressive functional explosiveness. Gets off the ball in a hurry and closes fast in pursuit. Has played on the edge and as an off-line linebacker. Could fit either role in college, depending on physical development. Natural bender who gets low as a speed rusher. Dangerous blitzer. Wingspan crowds passing lanes as he closes on QB. Competent into coverage. Disruptive at the catch point thanks to length. Must get bigger to maximize frame and strength at the next level. That will also aid arriving power as a tackler. Occasionally shows initial hesitation in pursuit before chasing with impressive speed. Athletic, toolsy linebacker who could fit multiple schemes.”

Brooks also noted Harris’ comparison to current Longhorns linebacker Jeffrey McCulloch, who appears set to start in 2019.

During a breakout sophomore showing, Harris utilized such a skill set to amass 83 total tackles, 21.5 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks, six pass breakups, two interceptions, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery.

A 6’2.5, 215-pound talent, Harris is ranked as the nation’s No. 179 player overall and as the No. 14 outside linebacker, per the 247Sports Composite.

With Harris now committed to the Horns, Texas’ 2021 class is up to seven members featuring solely in-state prospects. The class currently ranks No. 2 nationally and headlines the Big 12. Harris serves as the first defensive addition to this loaded unit.

  • Jalen Milroe — 4-star QB — Katy Tomkins
  • Quaydarius Davis — 4-star WR — Dallas Skyline
  • Billy Bowman — 4-star WR — Denton Ryan
  • Derrick Harris Jr. — 4-star OLB — New Caney
  • Hayden Conner — 4-star OT — Katy Taylor
  • Lake McRee — 3-star TE — Austin Lake Travis
  • Juan Davis — 3-star ATH — Fort Worth Everman

This story will be updated.