The 2012 Texas Longhorns Football Roster Is Out: Defense

You're 5-10 in our hearts, Quandre.

Time to tackle the Texas defense. We're knee deep in ballers.

This group could be as special as the 2009 unit if less experienced guys come through as expected and our known quantities continue at, or raise, their level of play.

Typical height, weight caveats apply.

Let's go by position grouping. I bolded starters.

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DEFENSE

Defensive End

1 Shiro Davis 6-3 236 Fr.-HS DE Shreveport, La. (Woodlawn)
44 Jackson Jeffcoat 6-5 245 Jr.-2L DE Plano, Texas (Plano West)
80 Alex Okafor 6-4.5 265 Sr.-3L DE Pflugerville, Texas (Pflugerville)
88 Cedric Reed 6-6 250 So.-SQ DE Cleveland, Texas (Cleveland)
81 Hassan Ridgeway 6-4 280 Fr.-HS DE Mansfield, Texas (Mansfield)
92 Reggie Wilson 6-3 259 Jr.-2L DE Haltom City, Texas (Haltom)

Jeffcoat at 245 is mildly concerning, even though power isn't his game. I'm a little worried that he hasn't had a chance to add good weight and strength after offseason surgery. Hassan Ridgeway at 280 effectively ends the "Will he ever be a interior DL?" debates. Probably. Unless he never gains another pound. He's a monster. Wilson is up to 259 and Reed is back down to 250. Cedric is still trying to figure out his optimal frame. Shiro already at 236 is good news.

Defensive Tackle

50 Paul Boyette, Jr. 6-4 295 Fr.-HS DT Humble, Texas (Humble)
90 Malcom Brown 6-4 315 Fr.-HS DT Brenham, Texas (Brenham)
85 Ashton Dorsey 6-2 295 Jr.-2L DT Tyler, Texas (John Tyler)
99 Desmond Jackson 6-1 303 So.-1L DT Houston, Texas (Westfield)
69 Kyle Kriegel 6-5 280 Jr.-SQ DT Elysian Fields, Texas (Elysian Fields)
97 Brandon Moore 6-5 320 Jr.-TR DT Montgomery, Ala. (East Mississippi CC)
94 Alex Norman 6-4 275 Fr.-HS DT Dallas, Texas (Bishop Dunne)
96 Chris Whaley 6-3 292 Jr.-2L DT Madisonville, Texas (Madisonville)

Why bold five at a two starter position? Because we're going to crowd source this thing. Malcom Brown is 6-4? Hmmm, whatever you say, big fella. You just keep that weight down. Don't go Bible on us. Mack Brown tailback of the future Chris Whaley is a now a QB pursuit terror at 292 pounds. Good to see big Brandon Moore shed some pounds. He was 20+ north of that. Good to see Dorsey and Jackson right around 300. I don't want them blowing up.

Linebacker

8 Aaron Benson 6-2 233 So.-SQ LB Cedar Hill, Texas (Cedar Hill)
7 Demarco Cobbs 6-2 218 Jr.-2L LB Tulsa, Okla. (Tulsa Central)
24 Timothy Cole 6-2 225 Fr.-HS LB Brenham, Texas (Brenham)
33 Steve Edmond 6-3 255 So.-1L LB Daingerfield, Texas (Daingerfield)
3 Jordan Hicks 6-2 235 Jr.-2L LB West Chester, Ohio (Lakota West)
11 Tevin Jackson 6-2 233 So.-1L LB Garland, Texas (Garland)
19 Peter Jinkens 6-1 213 Fr.-HS LB Dallas, Texas (Skyline)
55 Dalton Santos 6-3 250 Fr.-HS LB Van, Texas (Van)
35 Kendall Thompson 6-3 239 So.-1L LB Carthage, Texas (Carthage)

I'd be lying if I said Edmond wasn't the first weight I checked. 255. Phew. Santos at 250 evokes a similar response. Jinkens has already added 20 pounds since we saw him last in high school. I like this group, but the sophomores need to show me something.

Defensive Back

23 Carrington Byndom 6-0 180 Jr.-2L CB Lufkin, Texas (Lufkin)
6 Quandre Diggs 5-10 200 So.-1L CB Angleton, Texas (Angleton)
17 Adrian Phillips 5-11 201 Jr.-2L CB Garland, Texas (Garland)
31 Leroy Scott 5-10 193 So.-1L CB Pasadena, Texas (South Houston)
25 Josh Turner 6-0 177 So.-1L CB Oklahoma City, Okla. (Millwood)
26 Adrian Colbert 6-2 191 Fr.-HS DB Mineral Wells, Texas (Mineral Wells)
16 Bryson Echols 5-10 165 Fr.-HS DB DeSoto, Texas (DeSoto)
21 Duke Thomas 5-11 175 Fr.-HS DB Killeen, Texas (Copperas Cove)
2 Mykkele Thompson 6-2 183 So.-1L DB San Antonio, Texas (Stevens)
13 Kevin Vaccaro 5-10 180 Fr.-HS DB Brownwood, Texas (Brownwood)
29 Sheroid Evans 6-0 185 So.-1L S Sugar Land, Texas (Fort Bend Dulles)
4 Kenny Vaccaro 6-1 218 Sr.-3L S Brownwood, Texas (Early)

Lord Byndom is still a greyhound's 180, Quandre continues to list himself at an amusing and hopeful 5-10, it remains to be seen how Phillips has recovered from his injuries, and Kenny Vaccaro is a massive 218. I promise you: the NFL GMs and scouts are going to shit when they realize that a 220 pound athlete is manning up on and erasing slot receivers, turning his hips like a 185 pounder, while also punishing in run support. Duke Thomas - future stud - is filling out nicely and Bryson Echols needs a little college S&C. Colbert, Evans, and Thompson all have ideal frames and the requisite athletic ability - just give them some time to grow up. Josh Turner seems a bit of a hard-gainer, cut from the Curtis Brown cloth.

The battle for 5th and 6th DB between four or five legit candidates should be a pleasure to watch unfold.

Final Word

The weights I wanted down were and the weights needed up have started their journey. My impressions post-Spring are unchanged. We're a tad thin at DE, but it's being overdone; LB should be just fine, particularly over the second half of the season; DT is much better than the layperson believes and is a major depth strength. The secondary is probably going to be special.

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