Following a weekend visit to the Forty Acres, Humble Atascosita punter Ian Ratliff committed to the Texas Longhorns on Wednesday as a preferred walk on in the 2023 recruiting class.
The 5’11, 170-pounder is ranked as the No. 24 punter nationally by Kohl’s Kicking and reported offers from a handful of small schools before deciding on the Longhorns.
Ratliff recently competed at a 2022 December Showcase Camp. He graded out at the 5.0 star level as a punter! He scored 107.9 points on punts and did well in the drill work phase of camp. Ratliff also attended the Kohl’s National Scholarship Camp in July of 2022. He hit an impressive 46-yard 4.86 second hang time punt and averaged a 102.71 over the three charting phases of camp. Ratliff competed at the Kohl’s Texas Showcase camp in May of 2022. He punted with great command and hit multiple 45+ yard hits. He scored a 107.88 during the charting phase and hit some very impressive punts during the drill work portion of camp.
The addition of Ratliff comes after the previous staffs invested in ProKick Australia prospects — former Aussie Rules football players — and hit big with Michael Dickson but experienced significantly diminished returns with the next two scholarship punters due to injuries and ineffectiveness.
Concern about the capability of 2021 signee Isaac Pearson led Texas special teams coordinator Jeff Banks to add Texas Wesleyan transfer Daniel Trejo during preseason camp. After one nearly-disastrous punt by Pearson in the season opener, Trejo gained the starting job and was entirely adequate, punting 45 times for an average of 42.0 yards with a long of 61 yards.
During the NCAA transfer portal window, the Longhorns landed Cardinal graduate transfer punter Ryan Sanborn, who has one remaining year of eligibility, so Ratliff will serve as an insurance policy in 2023 with the potential to earn the starting job in 2024.