Texas Football: Scouting new 5-Star RB commit Jerrick Gibson

Jerrick Gibson, Texas football
Jerrick Gibson, Texas football /

The excitement for this big official visit weekend for the 2024 Texas football recruiting class is set in a big way on the morning of June 24. Not only did Texas get some forecasts to land the elite five-star Duncanville edge rusher Colin Simmons, but it also landed the five-star IMG Academy running back Jerrick Gibson.

Head coach Steve Sarkisian and the Longhorns got a huge commitment during this official visit weekend on June 24, with Gibson giving his pledge to the staff in person during his time on the 40.

The moment Gibson committed to Texas was caught on camera this weekend and posted on social media. He gave his pledge directly to Sark and the Longhorns staff on the second day of his official visit to Austin this weekend.

In the last three days, Gibson is the second running back to commit to Sark, running backs coach Tashard Choice, and the Longhorns in the 2024 class. Choice and the Longhorns also secured a commitment in the 2024 class from the touted four-star Phoenix (AZ) Mountain Pointe running back Christian Clark on June 22.

Although Texas has just six commits in the 2024 class, it looks like the running back position is set. Gibson and Clark were the Longhorns’ top two priorities for the running back position in the 2024 class, and they secured commitments from both of them before the fall. It’s hard to overstate how important that is to build the foundation of the Longhorns 2024 class on the offensive side of the ball.

Texas football gets its prize running back commit in the 2024 class in Jerrick Gibson

So, what does the 5-foot-10 and 215-pound Florida running back Gibson brings to the table for the Longhorns in the 2024 class?

Gibson has a lot of elite attributes that make him stand out as a big-time running back prospect. He has an insanely quick and explosive first step and jump cut that allows him to get momentum to explode through open running lanes. But he has the strong lower base and downhill running ability to bowl over opposing tacklers.

Once Gibson gets his foot in the ground to get that first step or cut with the ball in his hands, he can explode like a rocket through the hole at the line of scrimmage or get to the outside very quickly. That type of explosiveness and agility means that Gibson will be the perfect back to get the zone running game going for Sark and the Longhorns.

His flashy quickness in tight areas makes Gibson stand out as an explosive downhill runner. I talk about short area quickness a lot for running backs that have to work through the chaos at the line of scrimmage in the zone running game. But Gibson’s ability to make opposing defenders miss in close quarters is extremely special.

His lateral agility and change of direction are elite. Gibson looks like he’s gliding when he puts opposing defenders on skates that are trying to bring him down in the open field. Even when it looks like opposing defenders have Gibson tracked down in the backfield, he can shake them and get loose to find more open field for successful and often explosive gains.

Gibson’s explosiveness, agility, short area quickness, and downhill running ability make him the perfect back to be able to set the tone in the zone running game for the Longhorns.

Gibson is a skilled receiver out of the backfield

One of the characteristics that make this running back class so special for the Longhorns is the ability of Gibson and Clark to do damage as receivers out of the backfield. Clark put up more than 300 receiving yards on over three dozen catches during his junior season last fall.

And while Gibson doesn’t have the same type of statistical production as a receiver at IMG Academy compared to Clark at Mountain Pointe, he has shown in camp and combine settings that he is a solid route runner with good hands. Gibson clearly displays the skill set to be a capable and explosive threat out of the backfield as a receiver at Texas.

You rarely see a running back that is as compact and explosive as Gibson that runs routes so well and looks so smooth adjusting to make the catch in-route. That smooth route running and separation that Gibson has shown in camp, combine, and 7v7 settings the last couple of offseasons usually translates well in live-game reps.

Gibson will be another weapon Sark and the Longhorns can utilize to make things happen in space. He will be a potent yards-after-the-catch threat out of the backfield at the collegiate level.

It’s pretty crazy to think how many different ways Sark and the Longhorns will be able to utilize Gibson and Clark out of the backfield in the ground and passing games. Texas can utilize the duo of Gibson and Clark in two-back sets out of the backfield and even motion one out wide to spread out opposing defenses pre-snap.

Gibson and CJ Baxter Jr. give Texas RB longevity for a long time in the future

Texas fans can thank the tremendous efforts of Choice on the recruiting trail that have solidified the elite depth and talent in this running back room well into the future. For at least the next four or five years, the cabinet of talent at the running back position will be stocked full for the Longhorns.

This makes it two straight cycles that Choice and the Longhorns have gone into Florida and landed the No. 1 ranked running back recruit in the nation in each class. In the 2023 class, Texas snagged five-star Orlando (FL) Edgewater running back CJ Baxter Jr. out of Florida.

Gibson will be another Florida native running back for the Longhorns capable of making an immediate impact.

Areas of improvement

There aren’t many areas of Gibson’s game that aren’t polished. He’s a gifted running back with the frame, strength, and natural ability to have an immediate impact at the collegiate level.

But there are two minor areas of Gibson’s game that I would like to see more from him on film or that need improvement before he arrives on the Forty Acres next year.

First, Gibson doesn’t have much film in pass or run-blocking situations. Since blocking is an important component of the running back role in Sark’s offense, especially in two-back sets out of the backfield, Gibson must ensure this part of his game is ready next fall.

I would also like more exposure for Gibson as a receiver in live-game situations at IMG Academy. As I mentioned, I’ve seen a lot of film from Gibson running routes in one-on-one drills in camp/combine settings and 7v7s. But getting it done as a receiver out of the backfield in live-game situations requires a different feel than in practice and 7v7.

Next. 4 most important visitors this weekend for Texas. dark

Texas is building serious momentum on the recruiting trail in the 2024 class right now. The Longhorns landed four commitments since last weekend, and it sounds like more are coming. According to the 247Sports Team Composite Rankings, the 2024 Texas recruiting class now ranks No. 55 in the nation.