2018 Season Hopes? They’re Pinned On The 2017 Class.

Poona Ford and Gary Johnson (Will Gallagher/IT)

Poona Ford and Gary Johnson (Will Gallagher/IT)

How’s that for a headline to excite or scare you? While Texas faithful are rightfully excited about the incoming 2018 freshman class, those true freshmen will be secondary factors (elite DB class pun intended) in 2018 season results.

A 2018 season where Tom Herman needs to show Longhorn faithful that the palm trees and shimmering water in the distance aren’t a mirage after our seven year exile to the desert. If our 2018 true freshman do indeed prove pivotal, don’t expect a happy season result. Expect exactly the results that pressing too many freshmen into early action has meant in every other disappointing season to date. The true freshman savior is a lie. A product of recency bias and recruiting nerds who don’t respect development.

Let’s be clear about one thing: Texas will pin much of its season upside on the 2017 class. A transitional class ranked #25 in the country (behind Mississippi State, Maryland, South Carolina) and known as much for its misses on a phenomenal state elite (Little, Okudah, Browning, Dobbins, Hines….I’ll stop before the dagger twists fully) as for Herman’s late push to salvage the class with under-the-radar 3 stars.

Those players came to Texas with chips on their shoulders, plenty of talk about a “wasted class” and, in some circles, the hope that they could be recruited over quickly. Like it or not, these former JUCO seniors, sophomores and redshirt freshmen will play surprisingly crucial roles in the success of the 2018 campaign.

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