No Garrett Gilbert as previous anticipated, but a pair of Longhorn signees, Greg Timmons and Chris Whaley, will suit up for the THSCA Football All-Star Game Tuesday night's at the new and improved Darrell K Royal Texas Memorial Stadium.
Texas' highest profile recruit, quarterback Garrett Gilbert, will not be playing due to a schedule conflict, but arguably its second highest profile recruit will be and he could end up being the most important freshman to the Longhorns' 2009 season.
Freshman running back Chris Whaley of Madisonville will suit up for the South team and with the position still unsettled for Texas, there's a chance we'll be seeing the Horns' new starting running back trot out onto the field at DKR in Tuesday night's THSCA All-Star Game.
Even if it's not this year that he takes over as the Horns' starter, Whaley was recruited to eventually be a 20-carry a game, star running back. He was the only running back taken in the 2009 recruiting class, even though there were a lot of quality runners across the state and even across the nation interested in the Longhorns. But the Texas coaches told Whaley and his head coach at Madisonville, Greg Morgan, they believe Whaley was the best high school running back in the country.
“(Bruce Chambers) watched maybe five minutes and, he may have just said this to say it, but he said, 'Coach, he's the best running back in the nation.' He said, 'We're gonna get him,'” Morgan told Inside Texas.
There may be something to that.
Whaley was dominant at Madisonville, rushing for almost 7,000 yards and scoring 88 touchdowns. The 6-foot-3, 245-pound power back comes to Texas as the Horns top running back recruit since Cedric Benson came to Austin.
Joining Whaley on the South All-Star team is Aldine Eisenhower receiver Greg Timmons. The 6-3, 185-pound Timmons is not expected to have as immediate an impact as Whaley, but it's not for lack of ability. While the running back position is in flux, the Longhorns have a very good hold on who their top receivers are, meaning Timmons will likely redshirt...with an emphasis on likely.
“(The Texas coaches) told me to come in there ready to compete,” said Timmons. “It's not set yet that I'm going to redshirt. If I'm ready, I'll play.”
The big-bodied receiver from Eisenhower is known for his ability to get up and take the ball at the highest possible point. He is exceptionally effective working in traffic and in the corner of the endzone and will play the X position (split end) for Texas.
Tuesday's game is the second opportunity for Texas fans to see Timmons and Whaley play in an All-Star game. They each took part in the 2009 U.S. Army All-American Game back in January.
Kick off for the Texas High School Coaches Association All-Star Football Game is set for 7:30 p.m. at DKR.
Full THSCA Rosters
Following their participation in the U.S. Army All-American Game, Inside Texas' Jeff Howe analized Timmons and Whaley's performance:
Greg Timmons, WR, Aldine Eisenhower
It is a shame that Timmons did not play more in the game because he had a tremendous week of practice. Timmons almost had a tremendous catch in the first quarter but he could not haul in a pass on a terribly underthrown ball. He did a good job of adjusting his body back to the ball, but the pass fell through his hands. He did finish the game with two catches for 27 yards and the impression he left from the week is that if numbers were not a factor, Timmons has the ability to contribute this fall.
Chris Whaley, RB, Madisonville
Whaley had maybe the best game of all of the Texas commits and proved that he can perform on a big stage, even if he did play in a limited role. He had two impressive runs for first downs that saw him break several tackles on his way to first down yardage. He is not the flashiest back in the world, but he runs with enough elusiveness to make him a threat to score every time he touches the ball. He scored the final touchdown of the game on a 46-yard screen pass that saw him pull away from the East defense. If Whaley proved anything with his showing in the game it is that talk of him changing positions is premature and he will likely be a major factor in the running back competition this fall. (Also see Whaley Comes Up Big In Army Bowl)