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5-Star Safety Derek Williams Commits to Texas Over Alabama, Oklahoma, Texas A&M, More

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVJune 28, 2022

Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Texas Longhorns added another 5-star recruit to their 2023 recruiting class Monday.

Blake Baumgartner of ESPN reported safety Derek Williams committed to the Big 12 program over Alabama, Miami, Texas A&M, LSU, Clemson and Oklahoma.

"I feel like I'm a great player, and I think the defense will kind of fit me," Williams said. "They're going to use me in a nickel, safety spot. Play corner, too. Blitz off the edge, blitz coming from the safety spot."

Williams is a 5-star prospect and the No. 37 overall player, No. 3 safety and No. 3 player from the state of Louisiana in the 2023 recruiting class, per 247Sports' composite rankings.

Longhorns head coach Steve Sarkisian is putting together an impressive class that includes 5-star quarterback Arch Manning and eight 4-star prospects. It is the No. 3 overall class behind only Ohio State and Notre Dame, per 247Sports' composite rankings.

Baumgartner noted seven players have joined the fold since Manning committed.

"That kind of shocked me," Williams said. "I knew [Manning] was [likely] going there, but I was just making sure. That impacted my decision going [to Texas]."

Texas is among the biggest powerhouses in college football, but it has taken a step back of late.

It was 5-7 last season and has just one double-digit win campaign since 2009. That stands in stark contrast to its run of nine straight double-digit win seasons from 2001-09 that included a national championship.

The Longhorns are eventually headed to the SEC, where the competition will only get more daunting. If they are going to return to form, they will need to consistently recruit at a high level.

Adding Williams to the 2023 class is an example of just that.

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