Monday was a busy recruiting day for the Texas Longhorns, as the coaching staff extended three offers to top out-of-state prospects, with the final offer going out to Jacksonville (Fla.) Trinity Christian linebacker Jeffery Holland, per his Twitter page.
The 6'2, 230-pounder is a consensus five-star prospect rated as the No. 9 player in Florida, the No. 4 outside linebacker nationally, and the No. 33 payer in the country by the 247Sports Composite rankings.
Since Holland is one of the best players in the nation, it's no surprise that his offer list totals nearly 50 schools, including Alabama, Arizona, Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, LSU, Michigan, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Penn State, UCLA, USC, and many others.
Is there any interest on the part of Holland for the Longhorns? He noted on his Twitter account that he was a fan of the team was he was younger and that the program is under consideration, the type of comments that prompted 247Sports to list the Horns as "warmer" on his profile page, along with six other schools that supposedly make up his top group at this time (Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, Ohio State, and UCLA).
According to Horns247 ($), Holland is friends with star Virginia prospects Tim Settle, the incredibly explosive defensive tackle who was also offered Monday, and Matthew Burrell, the road-grading offensive tackle prospect who received his offer from the Horns last week.
Additionally, Holland said that he plans on taking an official visit to Texas in the fall.
Unfortunately, getting only one visit from Holland probably won't be enough to secure a commitment, especially since he's a Florida kid who is thought to be high on the Gators -- Will Muschamp's program is currently dominating the Crystal Ball projections for the rush linebacker at 86% of the predictions made.
Further struggles by Florida could open the door for other programs currently among his top group of schools, which could allow some room for Texas to seriously contend for his signature, but that seems less likely than with other top prospects like Settle and Burrell.
What type of prospect is Holland on film?
The knock on him according to 247Sports, which rates him as a four-star recruit, is that he doesn't have an ideal frame. And while he may not have the pure shoulder width that evaluators like, there's plenty of room for continued growth, suggesting that he'll eventually play at over 240 pounds in college, a size that makes him a pure edge threat and more of a defensive end than a linebacker.
In fact, coming off the edge is the role that Holland plays in college. Variously listed between 6'2 and 6'3, he's on the small side for a defensive end, though Sam Acho had a great deal of success at Texas despite measuring a similar height at the Combine.
The best fit for Holland would probably be as an outside linebacker in a 3-4 scheme, though he could see early playing time in college as a stand-up pass-rushing specialist on third downs. Eventually, he's probably going to have to learn to play with his hand on the ground and hold up at the point of attack against the run.
His quickness and closing speed off the edge are impressive, representing some of the best parts of his skill set. At times, he can get off the ball so quickly that offensive linemen fail to get their hands on him. When Holland arrives in the backfield, he has knack for forcing fumbles by attacking the football, often doing so without compromising his ability to make tackles.
When offensive tackle get deep in their pass set, he has an inside move as a counter that can be equally as hard for tackles to deal with as his speed rush.
Overall, think Shiro Davis or Sergio Kindle as Texas comparisons for Holland, who isn't asked to drop into coverage in high school and won't be asked to do that often in college, either, as he's a pure downhill player.