After losing its top three wide receivers from the 2023 campaign, the Texas Longhorns needed to add proven talent at wide receiver and did just that with the addition of Isaiah Bond on Sunday, who committed while visiting the Forty Acres.
BREAKING: Former Alabama WR Isaiah Bond has Committed to Texas, he tells @on3sports— Hayes Fawcett (@Hayesfawcett3) January 14, 2024
He totaled 48 Receptions (led Alabama) for 668 Yards & 4 TDs in 2023
One of the Top Players in the Portal #HookEmhttps://t.co/yDXsgmW9sf pic.twitter.com/tBxx1BBSjH
Later on Sunday, Bond signed with Texas and was officially announced as a member of the program.
Bond, who left the Alabama Crimson Tide thanks to the 30-day window created by the unexpected retirement of Nick Saban on Wednesday, immediately rose to the top of the transfer ratings. The No. 2 transfer player immediately locked in a visit to Austin with the Longhorns and committed shortly thereafter. As as sophomore, Bond finished the season second on the Crimson Tide’s receiving list with 688 yards and four touchdowns in just his first season as a full-time starter while leading the team with 48 catches.
Coming out of Buford (Ga.) in the 2022 recruiting class, Bond was the No. 43 player overall and the No. 2 Athlete in the country as a part of the Crimson Tide’s No. 2 overall recruiting class. A legitimate speedster, Bond won the Georgia 6A 100-meter and 200-meter races as a junior, the same season he turned in a 10.48 100-meter event.
During his recruitment, Texas was somewhat in the mix and scheduled to receive an official visit that never come to fruition, with the Crimson Tide, the Florida Gators, and the Miami Hurricanes receiving visits during the process.
Bond is the second transfer addition at wide receiver for the Longhorns this offseason, joining Matthew Golden to bolster the wide receiver room as Texas reloads. He likely steps in at the slot, with Johntay Cook slotting in as the probable third starter in the room. Bond gives Texas a proven threat at receiver to match with Cook who has a high ceilings but undetermined floors, and Golden, who still has some untapped potential entering his junior season.
Analysis (by Daniel Seahorn):
Mr. 4th and 31 is coming to Austin. Isaiah Bond was the Crimson Tide’s leader in receptions and second to Jermaine Burton and receiving yards and touchdowns in 2023. Bond is listed at 5’11, 182 pounds by Alabama, which is just slightly above what he was listed at as a recruit. Bond isn’t a mutant from a measurables standpoint, but he has the one thing in spades that offensive coaches covet and that is SPEED. Bond possesses legit sprinter speed that translates from his days on the track where he won state at the 6A classification in both the 100M (10.51) and 200M (21.19). Bond uses that speed and ability to get clean releases from the LOS to stretch the field vertically. If you are not able to jam him up at the line or knock him off his route there is a strong chance you are going to be in the trail position as a defensive back. Shows good acceleration in the open field as well as in his routes. Has the tendency to catch with his body more so than his hands if I had to find something to quibble about based on the cut-ups I found from this year. Alabama moved him around pre-snap a good bit trying to hunt matchups and even had him line up offset from Jalen Milroe in the SEC championship game. Bond is likely at worst your WR2 heading into 2024 along side guys like Matthew Golden and Johntay Cook. Steve Sarkisian recruited him to Alabama and now he has recruited him to Texas. I’d imagine he is going to get a similar usage to how Xavier Worthy was used the past few years.