• Texas defense forces three turnovers, Ash tosses two touchdown passes in Spring game

    Jay-Z may have invented swag, but this spring David Ash has apparently picked up where the Brooklyn rapper left off and is cultivating his own swag-filled persona on and off the football field.

    “He has loosened up a lot,” receiver Mike Davis said after the annual Orange-White game held Saturday night. “He’s got some swag now. And he’s been dancing more, too.”

    Ash led the first team offense to a field goal on its opening drive before connecting with Davis on a 38-yard touchdown pass on the second drive of the first quarter. The junior quarterback finished the game 17-of-24 passing for 162 yards and two touchdowns. Ash did throw two interceptions in the second quarter, one on a failed shovel pass that was snatched up by linebacker Jordan Hicks. The second pick came just before the half when receiver Bryant Jackson was unable to haul in a pass over the middle of the field from Ash and freshman defensive back Adrian Colbert snagged the tipped ball.

    “I just have to be more aware in those types of situations and eat the ball,” Ash said. “When you give the ball away you can’t score.”

    Ash had a new receiver to throw to during the scrimmage as sophomore defensive back turned kick returner turned wide receiver Orlando “Duke” Thomas lined up with the offense and caught three passes for 27 yards. Thomas also returned two kickoffs for a total of 65 yards, all while playing cornerback on the defensive side of the ball.

    “Duke is a great competitor and a guy we all want to utilize in the best possible way,” offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Major Applewhite said. “He’s a gym rat and he reminds us a lot of Quandre Diggs. He does a lot of things right and picks up things quickly, too.”

    There were more new faces for Texas on offense as freshman quarterbacks Tyrone Swoopes and Jalen Overstreet were unveiled in the second half. Swoopes, who is expected to redshirt, is still third in line behind Case McCoy in backing up Ash but is quickly moving up in the ranks. Swoopes ran four times for 26 yards and also completed both of his attempted passes while being flushed out of the pocket. Both Overstreet and Swoopes had runs of over 20 yards.

    Defensively, Texas ran only four different looks and rotated a lot of new players while players like Jackson Jeffcoat and Demarco Cobbs continue to rehabilitate from injuries. Freshman Caleb Blueitt was able to get into the backfield on more than one occasion to disrupt the offense, but had to pull up short on his would-be sacks ofthe Texas quarterbacks.

    The Texas defense forced three total turnovers with McCoy also throwing an interception on a deep ball intended for receiver John Harris. The pass was intercepted by Sheroid Evans who ran the ball back 60 yards to the two-yard line.

    Johnathan Gray would punch the ball from the two for his only touchdown on the night. Gray finished with six carries for a game-high 45 yards. Harris led all receivers with 73 receiving yards, but Davis was the most productive, nabbing four catches for 66 yards and a touchdown.

    “I think the offense managed really well,” head coach Mack Brown said. “It will get faster and more efficient.”

  • DB Jalen Campbell becomes Texas' Class of 2015 commit

    Flour Bluff Corpus Christi defensive back Jalen Campbell became the Longhorn’s third commitin the last two days. The 5-foot-11, 175-pound prospect first received an offer from Texas last weekend during the team’s first-ever Sophomore Day. He committed Saturday evening just before the spring game.

    Campbell is a bit of a sleeper who blew up on recruiters’ radar after winning the defensive skill MVP at a recent Rivals camp. Texas was the only offer the 2015 recruit had so far, but LSU, Oregon and Georgia showed early interest. He is the eighth best 2015 prospect in the state of Texas, according to rivals.com.

    Campbell is capable of playing various skill positions but is most valuable to Texas as a corner. Both starting corners, Quandre Diggs and Carrington Byndom will be out of the program by the time Campbell’s class comes in, so it’s a position of need.

    He is the third 2015 recruit to commit to Texas, joining offensive lineman Aaron Garza of Sherman, Texas, who committed last weekend, and defensive tackle Bryce English from DeSotos, who committed on Friday.

  • Guard Kendal Yancy-Harris becomes Rick Barnes' third Class of 2013 commit

    Richardson Berkner point guard Kendal Yancy-Harris, a four-star prospect, according to rivals.com and ESPN, committed to Texas on Saturday. 

    Yancy-Harris, who averaged 12.2 points, 6.5 rebounds and 8.1 assists per game last season, announced his pledge to play for the Longhorns via Twitter.

    "It's official Just Committed 2 Be a UT LONGHORN !!!," he tweeted Saturday afternoon.

    Yancy-Harris joins Orlando product Demarcus Croaker, who committed to Texas earlier this month, and Houston native Isaiah Taylor as the three players to pledge for head coach Rick Barnes and the Longhorns next season. All three are guards.
    After being released from his letter of intent with USC, who fired head coach Tim Floyd midway through the season, Yancy-Harris opened up his recruitment. He visited Texas this week and committed Saturday.

    Yancy-Harris visited Texas on Thursday, the day after sophomore guard Sheldon McClellan filed paperwork to transfer from the Longhorns. The transfer became official Thursday. Sophomore forward Jaylen Bond also transferred from Texas earlier this month and sophomore point guard Myck Kabongo could declare for the NBA Draft soon.

  • Men’s track ends 86th running of Texas Relays with short day.

    The Texas Relays wrapped up with a light day of action for the Texas men’s team. Only two events featured Longhorn athletes — the discus throw and the 110-meter hurdles.

    Keiron Stewart ran well in the hurdles, but wasn’t at his best in a strong field of athletes. His time of 13.51 seconds paled in comparison to speedster Johnathan Cabral’s 13.33-second mark, which should raise him as far up as second in the NCAA performance list.

    Texas had a number of athletes in the discus throw, including Ryan Crouser, Will Spence, Clint Harris, Hayden Baillio and Blake Jakobsson, but all missed out on a podium finish. Crouser, winner of yesterday’s shot put competition, failed to continue his winning form in the discus, but managed a 5th-place finish with a 195-11(59.28m) throw. UCLA’s Julian Wruck broke all sorts of records with his 216-foot, 7-inch (66.01m) toss. The mark not only broke a Texas Relays record, but also set a new UCLA-best distance in the event.

    The Longhorns resume action in Tucson, Ariz. on April 6. They will travel to compete in the Jim Click Shootout that will be hosted by the Arizona Wildcats.

  • Song remains the same as distance runners steal show on Day 3 of Texas Relays

    The date on the calendar might have changed, but the story remained the same for the Longhorns as the distance runners once again excelled in the third day of the Texas Relays.

    The distance medley team pulled out a win over the Texas A&M Aggies in their event. The team, comprised of sophomore Kyle Thompson, seniors Patrick McGregor and Zack Bilderback and freshman Trevor von Ackeren, stayed close through the race with the Aggies, but managed to take over the lead in the final stretch of the race cheered on by the Texas Relays crowd and their teammates.

    “It’s great to have the crowd.” Thompson said, “It allows me to step it up just one more notch at the end; just hearing everyone cheering.”

    The long distance team didn’t stop there, though. The Longhorns’ 4x1500 team, made up of seniors Austin Bussing and Kyle Merber, junior Kevin Rayes and freshman Brady Turnbull, also won their event over UCLA.

    With Texas’ long distance runners winning the distance medley relay, the 10,000 meter run, the 4x800 and now, the 4x1500, the Texas team seems unstoppable.

    “We’ve just been building on momentum,” Turnbull said, “This is the third distance relay that we won. You see [the other wins] and you get excited. You kind of have to finish the job.”

    Back from a long indoor layoff due to injury, Ryan Crouser also made a statement at the Texas Relays. His 20.43m throw in the shot put won the event easily.

    “It’s a great start,” Crouser said. “It’s been a long time since I’ve competed healthy. It’s just really, really fun to get out there.”

    The throw also earned him a spot among Texas legends. The toss now stands as 5th in the UT record books.

    Jarard Bruner leaped past the competition in section B of the men’s triple jump with a 15.53m mark that earned him a win and a new personal best. The wind worked in his favor, but wasn’t quite as strong as it was with competitors below him. Nonetheless, the wind’s help wasn’t needed as Bruner won the event easily.

    The competition in the high jump was too strong for Victor Glaze. The freshman, making his first appearance at the Texas Relays, participated in section B of the high jump, ending up in fourth place. Although the rest of competition failed to also clear the 2.16m jump, Glaze had a higher number of misses at earlier heights.  

    In the the preliminary round of the 110 meter hurdles, senior Keiron Stewart qualified for the finals with a fifth place finish and a time of 13.71 seconds. Eddie Lovett of Florida flew past the competition, leading the race with a gap of .18 seconds between him and second. He’s running at top form and will be tough to beat in the finals.

    Casey Wicker ended up in 15th place in the Pole Vault after failing to clear the 17’07 bar as another competitor, Mississippi’s Sam Kendricks, put on an exhibition in the event. The referees put bar after bar on the vault stand, but Kendricks cleared them all, finally failing to clear a height of 5.85m. His 19-00.75 (5.81m) mark not only set a Myers stadium record, but also is the best pole vault performance so far in the NCAA circuit.

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