Every fall, the Texas Longhorns host a handful of visitors for practices, but scrimmages provide an ideal showcase for recruits, which was the case on Sunday night when Texas hosted Houston Lamar safety John Bonney and 2015 prospect Damarkus Lodge, a wide receiver from Cedar HIll, and James Lockhart, a defensive end from Ennis.
All three are top targets in their respective classes, with Bonney currently looking like the most likely true defensive back to join the class, as Arlington Bowie's Edwin Freeman will eventually have to move to a hybrid safety/outside linebacker position unless he somehow manages not to gain any weight. Once set to make a decision before his senior season, Freeman will now take his official visits.
There hasn't been much come out about Bonney's visit, as he's reached the point of the process where there isn't much to say, though there has been some surprise around the Longhorn interwebs that he hasn't pulled the trigger yet on a decision after taking visits to Ohio State and Northwestern in late July. He has longtime ties to the Baylor staff from their time at Houston, so the Bears are a strong contender for his services and he loves the family atmosphere created by head coach Art Briles, but the Horns have also been thought to be the leader for some time.
After sitting dead split back in July between Baylor and Texas, the 247Sports Crystal Ball predictions are now trending towards Texas.
Before taking in the Sunday scirmmage, the consensus four-star prospect visited Waco on Saturday.
The big news of the weekend was the visit from Lockhart.
#Longhorns DE offer James Lockhart on unofficial today RT @KingJeezy_9: #hookem pic.twitter.com/8qvwoh6CXW— William Wilkerson (@ESPNwilkerson) August 18, 2013
No, scratch that, the big news was what the 6'3, 245-pound defensive end said about his visit -- according to Blake Munroe of Horns247, Lockhart now has the Longhorns as his leader after taking in Sunday's scrimmage.
The only defensive end currently offered by Texas in the 2015 class, the Ennis defender is an extremely important target because the drop-off after him is significant. The next defensive end in the state in the 247Sports ranking is Round Rock's Breylin Mitchell, and he's already committed to TCU, though an offer from the Horns could perhaps have a similar effect as the offer to Johnny Shaw that convinced the Center safety to switch his pledge.
Lockhart also holds offers from Baylor, TCU, and Oklahoma.
The other important Sunday visitor was Lodge, another early four-star prospect who has so many offers at this point that he lists them alphabetically to help him remember them all. Texas has long been thought to lead for Lodge, though the Cedar Hill product is savvy enough that he hasn't ever officially named them the favorite, though it hasn't slowed down that speculation at all.
Oklahoma may now be a contender for the 6'1, 190-pound prospect after a visit last week that reportedly went well, but until something changes, Texas is in excellent shape with the current No. 4 wide receiver in the state of Texas by 247Sports.
Want to know more about why the Texas defense fell apart last season and how Manny Diaz can fix it? What about insight into Major Applewhite's influences and how they will impact the new Texas offense? Or why you should believe in David Ash making the jump this season? Get all the answers in 2013 In the Huddle: Texas.