Longhorns trending with key goals for 2024

After two consecutive top-five recruiting classes in 2022 and 2023, Texas’ start to the 2024 class was, well, slower. The Longhorns only have three signings in June, but that’s not exactly unusual. At this point a year ago, UT also only had three signings and then experienced a massive rebound in June and July that nearly brought them into the top 10 league.

Steve Sarkisian’s staff prides itself on making summer or early fall commitments, and the Longhorns have had great success in that regard during his tenure. While the casual observer might look up and see Texas at number 48 in the statewide On3 Industry Team Recruiting Rankings, there’s more to it than meets the eye.

According to the On3 Recruiting Prediction Machine (RPM), the Longhorns are a number of important targets for June.

“Recruitment in Texas appears primed to pick up again in June as the official visiting season heats up,” said Sam Spiegelman, national recruiting analyst at On3. “People like Kobe Black And Corian Gipson will be on campus, with the latter expected to make a decision on his acceptance in late June, if not early July. I like Texas’ position with both on the On3 RPM.”

5 Star CB Kobe Black

School: Waco (Texas) Connally
On3 industry ranking: No. 18
At 3 rpm: Texas 89.1%, Oklahoma State 2.9%, Texas A&M 2.0%

the thin one: The secondary, and especially the cornerback, is a key position for Texas this cycle. And there’s none more important in the state of Texas than five-star star Kobe Black. The Longhorns are fighting some state programs, including Oklahoma State and Ohio State. He already has official visits with the Longhorns and Buckeyes this summer.

“There’s a family atmosphere in Texas,” he told On3’s Sam Spiegelman earlier this month. “You’re building something. There’s a lot of talent that’s developing well and that’s important to me. They want to move me around and play me at the STAR, on the corner and move me around – that really catches my eye.”

4 Star CB Selman Bridges

School: Temple (Texas) Lake Belton
On3 industry ranking: No. 44
At 3 rpm: Texas 87.0%, TCU 4.5%, Arkansas 2.9%

the thin one: Similar to the aforementioned Black, Selman Bridges is about as big a cornerback target as there is on the Texas board this cycle. As a junior, he recorded 46 tackles, had six pass breakups and returned one of his two interceptions for a touchdown for Temple Lake Belton.

Earlier this month he named his top nine schools, but it seems it largely comes down to TCU, Arkansas, Texas and possibly USC. He has arranged OVs with the first three for this summer.

“We’re locked in, me and Sark are locked in,” he recently told Spiegelman. “So are Coach Joseph and I. Coach Joseph was out here too, talking to me and training me. We also sat down on my last visit and watched a film and broke it down and that was good.”

4-star RB Jerrick Gibson

School: Bradenton (Florida) IMG Academy
On3 industry ranking: No. 45
At 3 rpm: Texas 93.5%, Florida 2.0%, Georgia 1.3%

the thin one: After Texas RBs coach Tashard Choice brought in five-star Cedric Baxter Jr. from Florida last year, he wants to do the same Jerrick Gibson. The two have a long-standing relationship dating back to Choice’s time at Georgia Tech, and Texas’ signing of Baxter isn’t hurting their chances either.

Miami, Florida and a handful of others remain in contention, but it will take an extraordinary turn of events for the Longhorns to miss Gibson at this point.

4 Star WR Gekyle Baker

School: Brownsboro (Texas)
On3 industry ranking: No. 92
At 3 rpm: Texas 64.2%, Oklahoma State 19.9%, Baylor 1.9%

the thin one: The Longhorns adjusted to receiver in the 2023 cycle but plan to do so again in 2024, and Gekyle Baker is one of her top goals on the board. The six-foot-tall, 170-pound man has steadily climbed the recruiting ladder over the past six months and is now in the top 100 candidates.

He’s been largely quiet on recruiting this spring, but told InsideTexas in January that Texas made a strong statement on its recruiting.

“The coaches and staff at Texas really do care that you’re doing well and that your body is where it needs to be,” Baker said. “Coaches don’t care about your skills, I mean they care about your skills, but they want to help you improve your skills. It’s a beautiful place and I can see great success there. It was wonderful. 10/10.”

4 Star Security Jordon Johnson Rubel

School: Bradenton (Florida) IMG Academy
On3 industry ranking: No. 148
At 3 rpm: Texas 90.8%, TCU 1.5%, Ohio State 1.3%

the thin one: Jordon Johnson-Rubel recently named its top 5, a list that includes Michigan, Ohio State, TCU, Texas and USC. Official visits are scheduled for June for all but TCU, as he is from Fort Worth and estimates he has been on campus more than a dozen times. As summer begins, however, the Longhorns are in the lead.

“I’ve seen Texas four times, but I’ve seen Coach (Blake) Gideon at least 30 times, so he’s always one of the coaches in my ear,” Johnson-Rubell recently told On3’s Chad Simmons. “They run the same system as we do at IMG, so I love their system. They’re a successful program that has produced some of the best receivers in recent years. If I protect these guys while training, it would make me better. Going to the SEC is another big thing for me. They play better competition in the SEC.”

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