Texas suffered a significant blow to its 2015 recruiting class Wednesday when in-state running back Jordan Stevenson decommitted, per EJ Holland of The Dallas Morning News. The 4-star South Oak Cliff standout elected to reopen his recruitment more than a year after initially pledging to the Longhorns.
It didn't take long for another top suitor to emerge for Stevenson, who rates 18th nationally among rushers in 247Sports' composite rankings. He spent an official visit at Wisconsin, and his decision quickly followed an announcement on The Dan Patrick Show that Badgers Heisman Trophy candidate Melvin Gordon plans to enter the 2015 NFL draft.
Stevenson, a 5'8", 185-pound speedster who started his career at Dallas Skyline High School, initially pledged to Texas last fall. He chose the Longhorns in October 2013, but offers soon followed from the likes of Ohio State, Alabama, UCLA and Wisconsin.
After rushing for more than 1,900 yards and 18 scores as a junior, Stevenson established career bests this season. He carried the ball 258 times, churning out 2,511 yards and 31 touchdowns en route to state quarterfinal action.
The focus now shifts to Wisconsin, where sophomore Corey Clement is the heir apparent to Gordon. The New Jersey native accounted for more than 800 yards and nine scores during the regular season after seeing significant reps as a freshman.
Stevenson could follow a path similar to Clement's in Madison, taking on a change-of-pace role in the backfield before earning his turn as a feature back. He is also expected to line up a visit to UCLA before national signing day, per Holland.
Meanwhile, Texas is left with a positional vacancy in its 2015 recruiting class. Stevenson, who pledged to former Longhorns coach Mack Brown, creates a need at running back two months shy of national signing day.
Chris Warren, a 4-star rusher from Rockwall, Texas, is expected to arrive on campus in Austin this weekend. The 6'2", 232-pound playmaker views the Longhorns as one of four finalists, along with Washington, Texas Tech and Oklahoma State.
"I know the Texas staff very well," he told Bleacher Report earlier this week. "My goal during the visit is to see what coach [Charlie] Strong is doing differently than coach Brown did to set the team up for more success on and off the field."
Warren, one of six finalists for U.S. Army All-American Player of the Year, rushed for 2,329 yards and 34 scores as a senior. He is rated ninth nationally among running backs in 247Sports' composite rankings.
"I kept a close eye on Texas this season," Warren said. "It wasn’t the best they could possibly be, but there were some great moments. In another year, with the right players, the team could jump up to a new level."
The Longhorns hope he's part of the solution. Texas already holds a commitment from 3-star in-state running back Tristian Houston, who rushed for 976 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2014.
Texas' 2015 class currently includes 18 commits. It rates 17th nationally in 247Sports' composite rankings.
Quotes obtained firsthand by Bleacher Report national recruiting analyst Tyler Donohue unless otherwise noted.
Recruit ratings courtesy of 247Sports.