There is no bigger recruit that Texas football has gone after in recent memory than the elite five-star Isidore Newman quarterback Arch Manning. Texas made Arch the cornerstone recruit in the 2023 class to help build this program for success for the foreseeable future.
Head coach Steve Sarkisian and the Longhorns landed a commitment from Arch in the 2023 recruiting class back on June 23, which sparked a major wave of momentum on the trail for this staff in the weeks following. From June 23 through June 29, the Longhorns landed commitments from three five-star recruits in the 2023 class.
The other two five-star commits in the Longhorns 2023 class besides Manning are the DeSoto wide receiver Johntay Cook and Westgate (LA) safety Derek Williams.
And more could be on the way among blue-chip commits in the Longhorns 2023 class in the near future.
Moreover, beyond the focus of what the commitment from Arch could do for the Longhorns on the recruiting trail should be an emphasis on what he can do for some of the younger players on the current roster. We could see Arch vying for playing time at Texas as soon as 2023 or 2024. And we should still see plenty of the younger former blue-chips on the roster now in bigger roles with the Longhorns a couple of years down the road.
Texas football underclassmen that will benefit most from Arch Manning
With that in mind, here’s a look at three current Longhorns players that could benefit the most from the addition of Arch.
Ja’Tavion Sanders, TE
The most promising tight end for the Longhorns by far among those on the current roster is the former elite five-star Denton-Ryan athlete recruit and sophomore Ja’Tavion Sanders. As the most talented and potent tight end on the roster, and with multiple years of eligibility remaining, Texas fans could still be treated to one or two seasons at least seeing a connection formed between Arch and Sanders.
Moreover, Texas fans are going to get a chance to really see what Sanders can do at the tight end position starting this fall.
Texas is likely going to give a much bigger role in this offense this fall to Sanders this coming season compared to last fall. He only took just over two-dozen offensive snaps last fall, and he wasn’t targeted in the passing game a single time.
That is going to change this fall if the word coming from the Longhorns in spring ball and summer workouts is any indication.
What makes the thought of a connection between Arch and Sanders so appealing has to do with the versatility of the former five-star Denton-Ryan two-way athlete. The 6-foot-4 and 255-pound Sanders has the hands and leaping ability to make plays on contested balls on the outside. But he also has the functional short-area quickness and movable catch radius necessary to be a proficient target in the passing game between the numbers and on short routes all over the field.
And we know that Arch likes the ability to dump the ball off to a reliable tight end target when his initial reads are covered with the frequency he targets three-star Will Randle at Newman High School.
Sanders is clearly a much more robust and potent target at the tight end position for Arch to look to. This could be quite an impressive connection that forms for this burgeoning Texas offense a couple of seasons down the road, depending on how long Sanders sticks around in college.