Though it sounded like there wasn't any chance for any of the four suspended Texas Longhorns players to return this weekend against the UCLA Bruins when head coach Charlie Strong held his Monday press conference, there have been rumblings that senior safety Josh Turner could play this weekend.
Defensive coordinator Vance Bedford didn't rule out the possibility on Wednesday, saying that it is "up in the air" and that Strong will make the decision about Turner's status.
An Instagram post from Turner several days ago at one point included a comment that he was returning this weekend on a picture of the senior in a Texas uniform but the comment has since been deleted. However, multiple comments on the post do include users congratulating Turner on being back.
Turner has missed each of the first two games as a result of his suspension for an unspecified violation of team rules. When senior running back Joe Bergeron, sophomore running back Jalen Overstreet, and redshirt freshman safety Chevoski Collins were dismissed back in July, Turner was also initially included as a player who was no longer with the program.
But Turner met with Strong several days later and was able to avoid being kicked off the team.
The Oklahoma native has played in 37 games at Texas, with five career starts. A starter for three games in 2013, Turner had a career-high eight tackles against Ole Miss, but his best season was his sophomore campaign, when he racked up 49 tackles, made six stops on special teams, and recorded three interceptions.
If Turner is back from suspension this weekend, he may have to earn a role on special teams to find his way back into the rotation, as the strong safety position he was expected to occupy has been capably manned, for the most part, by sophomores Adrian Colbert and Dylan Haines.
The path to playing time may be at the free safety position, then, where senior Mykkele Thompson has handled the vast majority of snaps for the Horns.