Chat with William Wilkerson
Welcome to HornsNation! On Tuesday, writer William Wilkerson stops by to chat about everything Texas.
Wilkerson joined ESPN.com in 2011 after covering high school and college sports for the last four years at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. William is a University of Texas graduate and lives in Dallas.
Send your questions now and join Wilkerson Tuesday at 3 p.m. ET!
William Wilkerson (2:59 PM)
Hope everyone had an enjoyable Memorial Day Weekend or Labor Day weekend, according to Metta World Peace. The Longhorns lost out on a recruit for the first time last week. What are your thoughts on that? They'll also be hosting their two big June camps here in a few weeks. Let's talk about all that and more right here, right now.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
What is the worst Texas Longhorns Football Team do you remember since they were in existance?
William Wilkerson (3:01 PM)
They were 1-8 in 1938 with Dana X. Bible at the helm. Pretty sure Carter covered that team.
Hey, Dub dub... This juco TE, is he coming this way? Going to get an offer? Wouldn't hurt to bring the exp and seperation for the new younger inexperienced TE's would it? Next C Luke, if this is the one hes been waiting for why not commitment yet? He a little salty about not getting offered sooner? Last the fella out of La whose father pretty much said hell has to freeze over before his son goes to LSU; are they looking to get him an offer?
William Wilkerson (3:06 PM)
What's good Josh. Unclear right now if Beau will get one, but I think his odds are good. Don't think Texas is sold on either Gow or Gaines and if they want another TE then Sandland might be its best option. As for Luke, I think that's probably the case. Noel Ellis will get an offer if he impresses at the June 3 camp.
Stephen (Seattle, Wa)
Do you see any Freshman coming in and taking a Starting job? lets exclude the roll that Gray is going to play.
William Wilkerson (3:08 PM)
immediate starting rolls, no. Starting rolls at some point in the future, or at least heavy playing time, then I'll go Malcom Brown, Shiro Davis and Peter Jinkens as my top three. But I think Daje will get a chance as will Cayleb Jones.
Following up the story today about Ronald Monroe, Who do you think the better QB is in 2014 in Texas, Monroe or Jerrod Heard?I I think it is Heard because he sets his feet really well and makes good passes right on the moneey and only uses his legs when he needs to and is faster than Monroe.. Your Take???
William Wilkerson (3:12 PM)
I'd like to reserve my answer until I see more of them this fall. But if I have to give you an answer right now I'd say Heard. I really like his frame right now. Its got a lot of room to grow in the coming years. Another factor is the level of competition he is playing in. Those are high powered contests every Friday. Amd I agree with you about using his feet only when needed. That's a good sign from such a young player.
Jimmy K (Toronto)
I'm not concerned that D. Wilson chose Oregon over the 'Horns because of the current depth at RB. With that ship now open, do you see us taking two more DBs instead of one? Or, our chances of offering Mike Mitchell as a 2nd LB (I'm still counting Naashon Hughes as a Greyshirt)?
William Wilkerson (3:15 PM)
I know a lot of Longhorn fans are not that upset with losing out on Wilson. But I'd be if I were you. I know Texas has a lot of playmakers that might fit a similar roll as Wilson, but he'd be among the better ones on the roster right now IMO. I expect Texas to keep a close eye on him this fall as he grows in his roll as the premiere back for DeSoto. I think Texas will end up taking at least two more DBs in 2013. Mitchell has had a really solid last few months but I'm not so sure the Longhorns jump on him late. I think they are happy with where they are at with Davis and Hughes.
Derrin (Plano, TX)
The Lady Horns fell short of the WCWS again. Why can't they seem to ever get over the hump?
William Wilkerson (3:18 PM)
First off, what an enjoyable Saturday that was. Those two teams, for lack of a better word, hated each other. In my eyes it was a combination of a few things. Give credit to Oregon first and foremost. The Ducks were the better team. Luna tired out and Fox's relief pitching just wasn't good enough. Oregon was also really aggressive on the base path. Connie Clark does a really good job with Texas, though, so I'm sure they'll be back next season.
Clayton (Fort Walton Beach, Florida)
What's up Will? It seems to me that losing Cody Johnson in his role as a fullback could be a bigger concern than most are making of it. A good blocking fullback can make a running game go from good to great, and from great to phenominal. Do the horns a formidable fullback on the roster to fill the role? Perhaps Bergeron? Or would they prefer to keep Bergeron as part of the 3-headed attack?
William Wilkerson (3:23 PM)
I agree with you Clayton. Johnson wasn't only an asset through his roll as a bowling ball in short yardage situations and blocking needs but also with the unselfishness he showed with the younger backs. That seemed to put them at ease. I can see Bergeron playing some there. I think how much depends on the health of Brown and the progress of Gray. If not Bergeron, then Ryan Roberson and possibly Alex De La Torre, who came in as a LB but was moved over to FB.
jr(mp) [via mobile]
Do u think Steve Edmunds from D-Field can be the best middle linebacker in the country and be considered as at top 10 pick in the draft some day
William Wilkerson (3:25 PM)
Sure I think it's possible... someday. Kenny Vaccaro, I believe, said he was the most athletic player on the team. Watching him in high school was just unfair. If he can keep his weight down and stay healthy then I can see him turing into one of the better LBs in the country.
Vince Young (On the verge of obscurity)
Is Buffalo my last chance to prove that I'm an NFL quarterback with staying power and have a long career in the league?
William Wilkerson (3:26 PM)
You've got to believe so, right. I hear good things about your steakhouse though. So you'll have that to fall back on if things don't work out up north.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
Who will be the next great Texas QB?
William Wilkerson (3:27 PM)
"Great" seems to be thrown around pretty loosely these days. I think the next "great" one, though, resides in Whitewright, Texas right now. Though I do think Conner Brewer will have a very solid career in burnt orange.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
How disappointing has Horns baseball and softball been this season? The Lady Horns choke again, falling short of the WCWS. And the men, led by legendary coach Augie Garrido, don't even make the big dance to compete.
William Wilkerson (3:30 PM)
I think you've got to chalk both seasons up to being disappointing. Baseball had plenty of key injuries happen at very unfortunate times. But you should still be able to beat Missouri and Kansas in Big 12 tourney play with your season on the line, right? Softball had a one-game lead in its series with Oregon and dropped two straight to the Ducks at home. With UTs track record of not being able to get out of the Supers, yeah, I'd call it disappointing.
We have a number of DB offers out there now. Who do you think we'll end up with? Will we be content with whoever the next one or two to commit are?
William Wilkerson (3:33 PM)
Tough call but I think Noel Ellis impresses at camp, gets an offer and commits (not necessarily right away but eventually). I think Cole Luke could be on the verge if the Longhorns continue to show interest, as we've reported. Maurice Smith wants to draw this thing out and take his five official visits first.
DeLoss Dodds (The Big Chair)
Should I start looking for new head coach if Rick Barnes doesn't lead the Horns basketball team to at least the Sweet 16?
William Wilkerson (3:37 PM)
So much of the NCAA Tourney, and the success teams have in it, is based on how their path to the Final Four is laid out. If Texas gets a favorable first weekend then it should have the talent, and be seasoned enough at that point in the season, to reach the second weekend. But I don't think it would be time for Barnes to go after that. My reasoning: Texas is without question the prime spot for talent in 2013. Two of the top three players in the country and four of the top nine reside within the border. Barnes, and his staffs ties within the state, are going to be key to getting at least one of them. Wouldn't be wise to move him for that reason alone because I think Keith Frazier, Julius Randle and some of those other in-state players are game-changers.
better recruiter Mac Brown or Lane Kiffin?
William Wilkerson (3:38 PM)
I'll give the edge to Mack. Stability and longevity in one spot are on his side. You never know if Kiffin is going to leave town in the middle of the night, right? Though I don't think he'd do that in Los Angeles.
Now that Dontre Wilson is committed to Oregon, what does UT do next at rb?
William Wilkerson (3:40 PM)
WR and TE are more pressing right now, IMO. Plenty of 2014 guys out there that Texas has already targeted.
Colton (Tyler TX)
I hear about Ash McCoy and Brewer. what about Overstreet has people forgot that Harsin hand picked this guy out for qb.
William Wilkerson (3:42 PM)
If you've forgotten about Overstreet then you've forgotten about one of the most gifted athletes on Texas roster in 2012. Not sure what roll he'll end up playing but the ball will find its way into his hands. These next few months are going to be huge for Jalen. He's got to show Texas' coaches that he can manage the playbook and has the accuracy they are looking for. He's hungry and doesn't like the fact that people are doubting his abilities.
charles (cutnshoot, Tx)
What Freshman will have the biggest impact on defense? Shiro? Malcom? or another?
William Wilkerson (3:44 PM)
Malcom. Even with Texas' talent at DT. I think he will end up being one of the Longhorns' all-time great DTs. I think, especially early on before film gets out there, his speed is going to surprise a lot of offensive lines. He played TE in high school and not just for show. Big fella can move.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
Will Johnathan Gray or Malcom Brown be serious Heisman contenders before they leave Austin?
William Wilkerson (3:46 PM)
Malcom Brown the DT would have to do something extraordinary to be a Heisman candidate. All-American? I can see that and expect that. J Gray could if his shoulder holds up, sure.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
William, I agree Texas is a spot with the kids they have in state in 2013. But how many of them will actually stay in Texas and commit to the Horns? The Harrison Twins, Julius Randle, and Keith Frazier to name a few are reportedely leaning heavily to out of state schools. And with the exception of Cameron Ridley. Scott Drew has done a better job of recruiting than Barnes recently. Do you really think Rick can pull it off? Is Devonta Pollard goiing to Texas?
William Wilkerson (3:49 PM)
No doubt Drew has had Barnes' number the past few years. I'm telling you this Isaiah Austin kid is going to be special. And the school he came from, Arlington Grace Prep, is the Oak Hill Academy of Texas. So Baylor establishing that connection could hurt Texas in the coming years (check of 2014 PG Emmanuel Mudiay if you haven't already). I think Texas' top two players in-state would be Randle and Frazier. Texas needs to nab one of them. I don't think they'll get the Harrison twins.
Mando (Houston, Tx)
Hey William, what have you heard regarding the OOS Juco TE for the 2013 class?? Is Texas going strong after him?? Any chance we land him?? Also, given the quarterbacks on campus (Ash, Brewer, Overstreet) and incoming class qbs (Swoopes) where do you see the Texas Program going in the next few years?? Any chance you think we have a special season and win a National Championship in the next two years??
William Wilkerson (3:52 PM)
Hey Mando, it's vital for an OOS prospect to visit campus and Beau Sandland is only going to visit Texas if he gets an offer first. He's sold on going OOS, too, so if Texas shows him heavy interest and offers I can see him in Austin. I think you've got to give Texas a chance in 2013. Too much talent not to.
Derrin (Plano, TX)
Can you really call Mack Brown a better recruiter than Lane Kiffin when he's selecting more than recruiting, the majority is done within the state, and the majority of Texas kids grown up wanting to play in Austin. Kiffin recruits nationally, routinely pulling kids from other football hot beds, particularly in the South, on a regular basis. His locking up of Ty Isaac is a recent example of him recruiting more nationwide, as well as at home. I can't stand the guy, but have to give credit where it's due?
William Wilkerson (3:56 PM)
No question, he is one heck of a recruiter. Not doubting that for a second. Mack has the ability to recruit OOS but he just hasn't tapped into those abilities very much because he hasn't had to. But you can see what he can do, and what his staff can do, when they do press a kid beyond these borders. IE: Brandon Moore and Donald Hawkins.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
The Horns landed Connor Brewer in 2012? Are there any top kids from Arizona in 2013 that may commit to UT (Willis, Farria, Cox, Allen)?
William Wilkerson (3:57 PM)
Cole Luke has a Texas offer and really likes the Longhorns. He could be one.
James (San Marcos)
How good can Texas defense be this year? How is experience are the new LBs?
William Wilkerson (3:58 PM)
Think it has a chance to be on of the top three in the nation good. Experience at LB is a minor concern. But their being in Diaz's system for an entire season/off-season will allow them to just go out and play rather than second-guessing.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
Typo, meant Malcolm Brown the running back on previous question about the Heisman.
William Wilkerson (4:00 PM)
He's going to have to step it up considerably from last season and maintain his health.
What have you heard about Jalen Overstreet and his chances to impress
William Wilkerson (4:01 PM)
He's behind the curve because he hasn't been on campus since Jan. like Brewer has. But his athleticism should make up for that in due time. He's going to have a chance. All players are.
William Wilkerson (4:05 PM)
Alright HornsNation, as always we appreciate your time and questions. Until next week, take care.