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Key DT target Du'Vonta Lampkin commits to the Texas Longhorns
The Horns have their first 2015 defensive tackle.
For the second time in two days, the Texas Longhorns picked up a key commitment at a position of need, as Houston Cy Falls defensive tackle Du'Vonta Lampkin pledged to the Horns in a ceremony on Monday afternoon.
Verbally Committed to the University Of Texas. #HOOKEM #40ACRES
— Du'vonta Lampkin (@DeeChilllin) July 28, 2014
Texas for Lampkin. pic.twitter.com/aE9jOGOLgO
— Dustin McComas (@DMcComasOB) July 28, 2014
The consensus three-star prospect chose Texas over finalists LSU and Oklahoma. A previous commitment to the Sooners lasted from late November of 2013 to late April of this year.
A decision had been planned for the fall and Lampkin even set up an official visit to Texas for early September, but he changed his plans following a recent trip to Austin for the Under The Lights at which he declared the Horns to be his leader.
At the time of Lampkin's commitment, the Horns had a sizable lead in his 247Sports Crystal Ball projections over the Sooners at 85% to 15%.
Lampkin also held offers from Arizona State, Baylor, Houston, Michigan, Mississippi State, MIssouri, North Texas, Notre Dame, and Oklahoma State.
Landing Lampkin was an important addition for Texas because the Horns have only signed two defensive tackles combined in the last two classes and missed on in-state targets Daylon Mack and Kingsley Keke, both of whom have committed to Texas A&M.
Unfortunately, the Cy Falls product doesn't profile as a difference-maker in college because of his average athleticism for his size, but he could become a rotation player if he can maximize his potential.
At 6'3 and 291 pounds, Lampkin has ideal size for the position and isn't far from a weight where he could contribute as a nose tackle if the coaches feel he doesn't have enough gap-penetrating ability to play there. Additionally, he also has the strength to hold up at the point of attack to make such a move feasible.
Heading into his senior season, his athleticism may be a bit underrated by 247Sports, which rates him four out of 10 in that category. While his quickness off the ball is hardly equal to that possessed by Mack, he does show decent get-off, lateral quickness, and can make plays against the wide receiver screen game.
Since Lampkin spent a lot of time last season playing defensive end for Cy Falls, so he may have a bit of an adjustment in college as he moves inside full time and will also need to work on a signature pass-rushing move if he is going to be a disruptive player, as well as work on his punch to hit and separate.
When he does bring his hands and gets extension, he can be difficult for opponents to deal with him.
Along with becoming the first defensive tackle pledged in the class for Texas, Lampkin is also the 14th overall in the 2015 class. In the 247Sports Composite team rankings, Texas remains at No. 16, but narrowed the gap with Ohio State.
Texas Longhorns APB signee Kevin Shorter put on medical scholarship
The Hrns will likely be short on running backs in 2014.
The news hardly comes as a surprise, but former Newton all-purpose back Kevin Shorter will be put on medical scholarship for the Texas Longhorns this season, Shorter told ESPN on Monday morning.
After taking a hit to the neck in a football game last fall for Netwon, Shorter was diagnosed with a narrowing of the spinal column that resulted in bruising and swelling following the hit and put him at risk for paralysis if he played again.
The 6'0, 185-pound consensus three-star prospect held out hope for some time that he would be able to play football again, but it appears as if that's not the case.
He was rated as the No. 56 athlete and the No. 106 player in the state of Texas and signed with the 2014 class after both former head coach Mack Brown and current head coach Charlie Strong opted to honor Shorter's scholarship.
So while the loss of Shorter was expected for some time, the news comes as it appears that senior running back Joe Bergeron and sophomore running back Jalen Overstreet have been dismissed from the team. Combined with the fact that 2014 signee D'Onta Foreman is also battling potential eligibility issues, the losses leave the Horns without ideal running back depth for another season.
Had Shorter made it through his senior season without an injury, he would have had a chance to play early in the current conditions.
As it stands, Texas will have to hope for season-long health for senior Malcolm Brown and junior Johnathan Gray.