However, only one of those players was on the offensive side of the ball. You can guess who that player was:
Offensive lineman Connor Williams, who could be the No. 1 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft if he leaves early after his junior year.
The other Longhorns on the Preseason All-Big 12 Team are defenders Malik Jefferson, Malcolm Roach, and Poona Ford.
The fifth player is punter Michael Dickson, who was a Ray Guy finalist for the best punter in the country last year. Dickson is also a candidate to win the 2017 Ray Guy award.
Full List of Texas Longhorns Preseason Conference Picks
- OL Connor Williams
- DL Poona Ford
- DL Malcolm Roach
- LB Malik Jefferson
- P Michael Dickson
What Does the List Say about the State of Texas Football?
Despite seven losses in the previous three seasons, the Longhorns still have a lot of talent on the roster.
It’s a matter of putting it all together and waiting for Charlie Strong’s recruits to mature.
Now is the time under new head coach Tom Herman.
– The Longhorns have a great offensive line led by Connor Williams.
– The defensive line lacks depth, but Poona Ford should be a game-wrecker in 2017.
– Malcolm Roach will be a big factor in new DC Todd Orlando’s destructive defense.
– Malik Jefferson will be the enforcer in the middle of the defense. Watch him have a breakout season playing for Coach Orlando.
– If the offense gets in trouble, Michael Dickson can flip the field with one kick, like he did in 2016.
That leads to a discussion about the offense and the skill positions.
Which Longhorns Will be on Final Big 12 Awards List?
The Longhorns did not place any players on the 2017 Preseason All-Big 12 Team in the positions of QB, RB, WR, or Defensive Back.
We know the situation at each one:
– Tom Herman has not committed to a starting QB. But, we know it will be Shane Buechele. Plus, the conference has veteran QBs Baker Mayfield and Mason Rudolph out of the state of Oklahoma.
– At RB, Chris Warren is hoping to replace 2,000-yard rusher D’Onta Foreman if he can stay healthy. But, there is uncertainty at the position.
– At the WR spot, the Longhorns played it by committee last year. This year, we expect sophomore Collin Johnson to emerge as the leading WR at an absolutely loaded position.
– The Defensive Back room is also loaded with talent. There just is not that one superstar DB at this point in the process of transitioning to Tom Herman and Todd Orlando.
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But, by the end of the season, we expect there will be a superstar DB making plays on the top Big 12 WRs like James Washington from Oklahoma State, Allen Lazard from Iowa State, and Keke Coutee from Texas Tech who were voted to the All-Big 12 Team.
This list will look much different after the college football season is over. That’s always the case when injuries and emerging stars factor into the mix.
Look out for at least one Longhorns skill position player to crack the Final All-Big 12 Team. Who will it be – Shane Buechele, Chris Warren, Collin Johnson, or a member of DBU?