Kendrick Blackshire, LB
The only non-wide receiver Texas is hosting among the portal visitors this weekend is the former Alabama junior linebacker Kendrick Blackshire. The veteran linebacker was expected to take a visit to Texas this weekend after he entered the transfer portal on Jan. 8.
Blackshire was one of the Alabama players who transferred before the news of the retirement of longtime legendary Tide head coach Nick Saban was announced on Jan. 10. Bond, meanwhile, was one of the many Tide players who entered the portal following the news of Saban's retirement in the last few days.
Linebacker was a position Texas was looking at to potentially fill depth and add experience to this group via the transfer portal this offseason, if the right player surfaced on the transfer market. But linebacker wasn't the biggest positional need Texas's staff was evaluating in the portal this offseason either.
If he committed to Texas in the portal this offseason, Blackshire would bring a veteran presence to the linebacker room as a rotational guy who can also bolster the depth here. Blackshire brings multiple years of experience playing at a top notch program in the SEC at Alabama as a rotational linebacker.
Blackshire also has past connections to some of the coaches on the Texas staff. He was originally recruited by Texas special teams coordinator/tight ends coach Jeff Banks when he was on staff under Saban at Alabama a few years ago.
Blackshire is also from a couple of hours up I-35 from UT, as he attended Duncanville High School in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex.
Yet, something that could impact Texas's pursuit of Blackshire in the portal early this offseason is the news of super senior linebacker David Gbenda returning for a sixth season in 2024. Gbenda's return for another year already gives Texas that veteran presence in the linebacker room heading into the SEC next fall, which could conflict with the staff's pursuit of Blackshire.