Texas Football: LB S’Maje Burrell has ‘improved considerably’ this fall

Texas football
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Texas football has seen multiple true freshmen step up as immediate contributors on defense this fall. Linebacker Anthony Hill Jr. and cornerback Malik Muhammad are two prime examples of true freshmen stepping up out of the gates in a big way this season for Texas on defense.

While Texas had a few true freshmen show out immediately on defense this season, more first-year players are waiting in the wings on this side of the ball that will make an impact in the next few years. At the linebacker position alone, Texas has multiple young players who are talented former blue-chip recruits bound to make an impact in 2024 and beyond.

Liona Lefau and S’Maje Burrell are two true freshmen linebackers who fit into this category of talented defenders that will be big pieces of this team in the SEC in the future. Lefau will compete for the starting mike linebacker job next year after the expected departure of senior Jaylan Ford to the NFL Draft.

Texas football freshman LB S’Maje Burrell has reportedly “improved considerably” this fall

Burrell is another young linebacker who will push for a spot on the two-deep next year. Inside Texas reported on Oct. 12 (paid content) that Burrell has “improved considerably” and he has the makings of a player who will continue to “get better” heading into 2024.

He’s bound to compete for a spot on the two-deep at mike or will linebacker.

Burrell among the many talented young linebackers set to redshirt this year for Texas

Lefau and Hill are the only Texas linebackers that have burned their four-game redshirt among the freshmen this fall. Hill and Lefau have taken at least one defensive snap in every one of Texas’ six games so far this season.

Burrell, meanwhile, hasn’t played any snaps in live-game action for the Longhorns this season. He is on track to take a redshirt year in 2023.

Fellow true freshmen linebackers Tausili Akana and Derion Gullette are also on track to redshirt this year. Akana is the only one of the trio of freshmen linebackers, including Gullette and Burrell, that has played in a game this season. He only played in one game thus far.

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