Texas Football Mid-Camp Report: DT/DE/LB

Orakpwned.

Let's talk defense, where we're all secretly Georgia Bulldog and LSU Tiger fans.

DT

Kheeston Randall is the man. The coaches expect an All Big 12 year. The second or third most important player on our football team. Let's all say it together: PLEASESTAYHEALTHYKHEESTON.

Calvin Howell is solid, but he has stamina problems. Not an effort or conditioning issue, just how he's wired. He has been limited in some practices and the coaches want to see him grab the position, wrestle it to the ground, and hogtie it.

Tyrell Higgins is serviceable. You're now starting to get into the calculus of whether Acho gives you more, even with a size deficit.

Greg Daniels is at DT to stay and he's going to be good. He's just underweight. We think we stole one here. Give him time.

All of the other freshmen DTs lack consistency and can't hold up for a long grind. Dorsey is the most ready to play currently and would be our #3 DT. Bible could play himself into some semblance of shape and benefit from cooler weather in October/November. Just in time for Florida Atlantic! It's unclear to me how a player who reports in June 35 pounds overweight at a position of clear need has made minimal progress from a S&C perspective by mid-August. You could accomplish a hell of a lot in 8 weeks with strict individual attention.

Taylor Bible has that first step, it's just buried in blubber and bad cardio. Lose weight and he's Russell Maryland. Continue on the same path and he's Sonny Davis.

Expect Sam Acho to log 30-40% of his snaps inside.

DE

The best position on the team.

Okafor, Acho, and Jones are all high quality starters. Wilson and Jeffcoat have exceeded high expectations. Right now Muschamp is diagramming a defense on a napkin to get five DEs on the field at the same time. Then you have Dravannti Johnson, who has shown a knack for pass rushing in situational packages and would, in any other year, be a camp darling. Our third team DEs start at 9-10 other Big 12 schools.

We will have a team that you don't want to fall behind on. Good secondary + endless waves of fresh pass rushers = tough times for predictable passing situations.

Amusingly, our 2011 DE rotation will be even stronger than this one.

LB

Acho and Robinson are 240 pound missiles. We haven't seen guys like this at Texas in a while. Obviously, Derrick Johnson + carbon based life forms is a good unit, but this is our best LB group in the Brown era.

I'll call for Keenan Robinson to lead the team in tackles, E Acho to lead the team in TFL.

If Robinson has a weakness, it's a tendency to overrun plays. He's learning not to run even to the RB. Emmanuel Acho's strength increase is making him better at the point of attack and not just a run blitz mongoose.

The move of Roberson to FB is reflective of our confidence in the freshmen, specifically Jordan Hicks. Like Jeffcoat and Wilson, Hicks is a freshman that is as good as advertised.

Tevin Jackson isn't catching on to the mental aspects of the game yet, but Aaron Benson has. Benson also came in at a solid 235. Not the 210 pound high senior they were expecting. We like him and expect him to play.

Dravannti Johnson is cross training at SLB. We're not asking him to play off of the ball much - mostly pass rushing and heads up on the TE on rushing downs.

Jared Norton and Dustin Earnest are splitting time inside when we play 3 LBs, with Earnest currently having the nod for his mobility. Tariq Allen is running 3rd team. Norton is a big-time thumper between the tackles, expect heavy use when teams try to smash mouth us.

Patrick Nkwopara held off a wolf spider using a knitting needle as a makeshift spear and paper clips fired from a rubber band. Then he bathed in a teacup.

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