Destrehan (La.) defensive tackle Gerald Wilbon signed his National Letter of Intent today, officially making him a member of the 2016 Texas Longhorns recruiting class.
Wilbon, a three-star nose guard, ranks as 2016's No. 34 player in Louisiana, the No. 47 defensive tackle, and No. 671 overall prospect, according to 247Sports composite rankings. Although he held 12 offers, which included Tech Tech, Arizona, and Arizona State, Wilbon has essentially been all in on Texas right from the jump. Following an unofficial visit June 10, Wilbon pledged to the Longhorns June 17. He has since taken another unofficial to the 40 Acres, as well as joining the small army of recruits that were recently on campus for an official visit January 15. Wilbon never took any other visits throughout his recruitment.
Even as a true freshman, Wilbon will enter the 2016 season with a real chance to earn significant playing time. After Hassan Ridgeway elected to forgo his senior season and enter the NFL Draft, junior tackle Poona Ford, and senior nose tackle Paul Boyette Jr., stand as the only notable returning interior linemen. Alex Norman, Jake McMillon, and Chris Nelson, collectively racked up only five solo tackles and one sack in 2015. This points towards a wide-open race for reps in the trenches that Wilbon will find himself in the thick of.
At 6'3, 311 pounds, Wilbon is a massive presence inside, and has the instincts to become a true interior force. While he was a walking mismatch in high school, and could quite simply overpower opponents at the line, and even double teams, Wilbon seems to understand when to attack. Often times, most notably in the running game, Wilbon would stay at home and wait for the play to develop, preventing a lane from opening up due to being overaggressive. But this isn't to take away from how effective he can be as a pure pass rusher, and WIlbon's use of swim moves and being able to quickly get off blocks could become a difference maker inside for a defensive line unit searching for answers.
It won't be long before this guy is eating plays up in the backfield in Austin.