With Malcolm Brown Committed, Can Anyone Catch Texas in 2011 Recruiting?
Malcolm Brown, the No. 1 running back of the 2011 class and a top five overall prospect, committed to Texas on Wednesday night to become the most-high profile prospect on it's already mammoth recruiting class.
The Longhorns now have more 5-star recruits committed than Ohio State, Alabama, and Oklahoma combined.
That makes Texas' 2011 class the far and away No. 1 recruiting class in the country, but we're still a long way from the end of this marathon and a ton of top-end talent is still out there for the taking.
So can anyone catch up with Texas or are they simply too far ahead in this one?
Here's the breakdown of the situation.
The Latest Addition: No. 1 Running Back Malcolm Brown
As a junior, Brown rushed for over 2,000 yards with 33 touchdowns. He's a powerful rusher that will put his shoulder down and punish defenders, wearing them down as the game goes on.
He won't wow you with his speed, but as a downhill rusher he's about as impressive as they come. Brown explodes into defenders and keeps his legs moving relentlessly, winning battles more times than not.
At 6' and 210 lbs, he's big enough to get on the field and make an impact right from day one and will instantly become the most talented back on the Longhorns roster.
WIth Cot McCoy off to the NFL and Garrett Gilbert still untested, the offense is expected to be geared more toward the running back, with Mack Brown and his staff trying to bring back the power running game to Texas.
Malcolm Brown might be the next Ricky Williams down in Austin.
Reviewing Texas' 2011 Recruiting Class
5-Star Commitments: 7
4-Star Commitments: 9
3-Star Commitments: 7
Just look at these names: Malcolm Brown (RB), Christian Westerman (OT), Desmond Jackson (DT), Sheroid Evans (S), Garrett Greenlea (OT), Leroy Scott (CB), Steve Edmond (LB), Josh Turner (CB), Sedrick Flowers (OG), Quincy Russell (DT), Quandre Diggs (CB), and Cedric Reed (DE).
What do all these players have in common? They're all ranked in the top eight at their respective positions.
That's just a scary amount of talent and it makes it easy to see why many experts believe this might be Mack Brown's best recruiting class yet.
Now all the Longhorns have to do is is fill out the two remaining openings with their top remaining targets and there really isn't anything this team could want for.
The Options Still Out There For The Longhorns
With Texas looking for another defensive end as well as a tight end after losing out on Austin Seferian-Jenkins, two names stand out above all the others still out there.
Jermauria Rasco and Chris Barnett.
Rasco has improved tremendously every year and that's something to take note of when looking at a prospect. He's an elite defensive end with a very high ceiling and he's only getting better as he ages.
He's got great instincts and discipline, but his technique and movements are still on the raw side. If he can learn to add some weapons to his arsenal and get off the ball quicker, he could end up being the best defensive end in the class.
Rasco is being heavily recruited by Texas, LSU, Alabama, Florida State, Georgia, and UCLA.
Barnett is one of the top tight ends in the country, ranked No. 7 at his position by Scout and No. 15 by Rivals.
He's one of the most versatile athletes in the class and literally can do it all on the high school level. He played both sides of the ball as a running back, receiver, tight end, quarterback, offensive lineman, defensive lineman, linebacker, and even safety.
As a tight end, he's the all-around package and one of the best pass-catchers in the nation.
The Contenders For The Crown: Alabama, LSU, Oklahoma, and Ohio State
When looking at all the other recruiting classes out there it comes down to a short list of contenders who pose a legitimate shot at surpassing Texas as the top recruiting class.
Alabama, LSU, Ohio State, and Oklahoma.
Ohio State currently has the No. 2 recruiting class, Oklahoma is at No. 3, Alabama is at No. 4, and LSU is at No. 6.
The Tigers might be the furthest behind, with only two 5-star prospects on the books, but they have three 4-star recruits with serious 5-star skills that should earn that grade by the end of their senior year.
LSU is also in the mix for as many uncommitted 5-star prospects as anyone in the country and if all was to go well, they could potentially finish the year with seven or more 5-star recruits to match Texas' top-end talent.
Ohio State is at the other end of the list at No. 2, but the Buckeyes have pretty much filled out their class as far as top-end talent and aren't serious contenders for any blue-chip prospects beyond Doran Grant.
Alabama and Oklahoma are somewhere in the middle, with some underrated recruits and potential to land a few more big names.
Can Anyone Catch Texas?
The reality is that Alabama and LSU are pursuing many of the same players and neither will land all of their top targets, essentially canceling each other out.
Ohio State shot up the rankings fast and while they're a lock to finish the year with a top five recruiting class, they don't have the potential to leapfrog Texas based on their remaining targets.
Now that the Longhorns have locked up Malcolm Brown, even if Ohio State was to land all of their top five remaining targets, it wouldn't be enough to get to No. 1.
Alabama is favored to land the best running back still available in Isaiah Crowell, but even if they do it would leave them four 5-star prospects behind Texas, with a relative tie beyond that.
Are the Crimson Tide going to land four more blue-chips? Probably not and you can throw Oklahoma in that same boat as well.
Texas just has too much talent at practically every position and with Brown added to the mix, the Longhorns appear to be a more invincible giant than ever.