The second target of the 2019 Texas football recruiting class this week deciding against coming to the Forty Acres was four-star safety Jalen Catalon.
The 2019 Texas football recruiting class lost a few key targets within the past month to smaller programs. Another commitment that got away from the 2019 Texas football recruiting class was announced to enter the weekend, on Jan. 17, with four-star Mansfield, TX, and Mansfield Legacy safety Jalen Catalon choosing the Arkansas Razorbacks.
Head coach Chad Morris was in the running for a number of key targets to add to the 2019 Texas football recruiting class. Catalon was one of the bigger in-state targets remaining for the Texas Longhorns before National Signing Day, which commences next month. The final predictions for Catalon’s commitment decision seemed to boil down to this Texas football recruiting class and the Razorbacks.
Moreover, it is impressive the progress that Morris is making on the recruiting trail entering just his second year with the Arkansas football program. After a rough time on the recruiting trail for the 2018 cycle, the Razorbacks are looking to lock down a top-20 ranked 2019 class in the nation, according to the 247Sports Team Composite Rankings.
One of the factors that could’ve played into Catalon’s decision to choose Arkansas over the 2019 Texas football recruiting class was the abundance of safeties for the Horns. Texas already has two four-star safeties signed in its 2019 class, and Catalon can make a bigger immediate difference with the rebuilding Arkansas defensive backfield.
However, what Arkansas is getting out of Catalon coming into the 2019 season is the nation’s No. 303 2019 high school prospect and the 25th best safety. Catalon becomes the fifth highest-rated commit in the 2019 Arkansas recruiting class and the second best defensive back. This 5-foot-9 and 190 pound safety should get his shot to immediately win some playing time in Fayetteville, AR, this upcoming season.
Some of the indicators were present leading up to the Jan. 18 commitment decision for Catalon. Two of his final three official visits were with Arkansas and Texas. But, the opportunity was greater for Catalon with Arkansas and Morris has that program trending in the right direction. Both Morris and head coach Tom Herman are doing well on the recruiting trail for this cycle.
A few of the other program that were in the running for Catalon’s commitment were the two teams that played in the College Football Playoff National Championship Game, Clemson Tigers and Alabama Crimson Tide. When it came down to it, the Horns and Razorbacks were the two classes competing for Catalon’s decision and the 28th commit of the 2019 class went to Arkansas to start off the weekend.