Written by Matt Wixon
Jerrod Heard, Solomon Thomas among area recruits excited about Texas hiring Charlie Strong
day before Texas turned the rumors into substance by announcing its new football coach, one of the Longhorns’ prized recruits sent out a solid statement. Denton Guyer quarterback Jerrod Heard, after playing in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl on Saturday, called Charlie Strong a great hire.
“I’m 100 percent with Texas,” Heard told the Austin American-Statesman.
Heard, who is No. 6 in SportsDay’s area recruiting rankings for the Class of 2014, has been committed to Texas since the summer before his junior season. The 6-2, 180-pound dual-threat quarterback rushed eight times for 63 yards to help the West beat the East, 28-6, in the game at the Alamodome in San Antonio.
Other D-FW area seniors committed to Texas also said they were happy with the hiring of Strong as Mack Brown’s successor. Strong spent the last four seasons at Louisville and was 23-3 the last two seasons.
South Grand Prairie defensive back Jason Hall, who is No. 24 on the area recruiting list, committed to Texas in the summer and also had an offer from Oklahoma. The 6-2, 190-pound senior said Sunday he had been waiting to see who would be coach before deciding if he would stay with Texas.
With Strong as coach, Texas is still Hall’s school.
“I’m excited that he’s going to be at Texas,” Hall said.
Lincoln’s Emanuel Porter, the top-rated receiver on the area recruiting list (and No. 21 overall), shared that excitement. Porter (6-5, 180) committed to TCU in 2012 but switched to Texas in June.
“I’m feeling good about it,” Porter said.
TCU has been in contact since Brown’s resignation, Porter said, but he’s planning to play for Strong.
"I'll have to find out what his plans are for the offense," Porter said in an e-mail. "I'll need to find out how receivers will fit into the offensive plans before I make any changes."
The Longhorns are listed among the finalists for a pair of highly regarded local recruits: Coppell defensive end Solomon Thomas (No. 3 on the area list) and Arlington Bowie linebacker Edwin Freeman (No. 12).
“I will be going back to Texas to meet the new coaching staff,” Thomas told Scout.com. “I like Charlie Strong a lot. I think he is a great coach.”
Another UT target could be Fort Worth All Saints running back Daniel Gresham, who was committed to Texas before switching to Louisville in the summer. Gresham couldn’t be reached Sunday.
Players may sign letters of intent beginning Feb. 5.