The news cycle in the NCAA Transfer Portal for Texas football has picked back up early in the 2024 offseason. This comes following the conclusion of the 2023-24 college football season, with the No. 1 Michigan Wolverines topping the No. 2 Washington Huskies in the National Championship Game on Jan. 8.
The conclusion of the college football season brings a final wave of portal entrants during the first transfer window of the offseason.
Head coach Steve Sarkisian and staff will host multiple visitors among transfer targets this coming weekend. It was reported early this week that Texas will host the former Oregon State Beavers redshirt junior slot receiver Silas Bolden for an official visit this coming weekend.
Texas football expected to host Alabama transfer LB Kendrick Blackshire on a visit this weekend
Texas is also looking to tackle another positional need in the portal at linebacker with a new transfer from the Alabama Crimson Tide this week. Former Alabama junior linebacker Kendrick Blackshire is reportedly (per Horns247) looking at a visit to Texas this weekend.
Blackshire is an option Texas is evaluating to replace some of the departing depth at the linebacker position. Texas loses All-Big 12 senior linebacker Jaylan Ford to the NFL Draft, which leaves a sizable hole at the mike linebacker spot heading into the SEC in 2024.
A former four-star recruit from Duncanville High School in the DFW-Metroplex in the 2021 class, Blackshire picked Alabama over the LSU Tigers, Baylor Bears, Illinois Fighting Illini, Oklahoma Sooners, and Texas A&M Aggies.
The 6-foot-2 and 245-pound third-year linebacker Blackshire played rotational snaps for the Alabama defensive front at middle backer in the last couple of seasons. He played a career-high 102 defensive snaps for the Tide at middle linebacker this season.
Blackshire played 15 defensive snaps, while registering three combined tackles, for Alabama in the loss to Texas in Tuscaloosa in Week 2 this season.
Blackshire has many connections to the Texas coaching staff. He was recruited by Texas special teams coordinator/tight ends coach Jeff Banks when he was on staff under head coach Nick Saban at Alabama. Texas running backs coach Tashard Choice was Blackshire's primary recruiter when he was on staff at Georgia Tech.
Blackshire registered 25 combined tackles, two tackles for loss, four quarterback pressures, eight defensive stops, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery over three seasons at Alabama.
What does Texas return at LB in 2024?
Pete Kwiatkowski, new LB coach Johnny Nansen and the Longhorns return multiple experienced linebackers from last year's squad in 2024. Texas expects to get redshirt senior David Gbenda, junior Morice Blackwell Jr., and freshman Anthony Hill Jr., among a handful of others back at the linebacker position for the 2024 season.
What has Texas already added in the transfer portal?
Sarkisian and staff have signed three portal commitments in this transfer window since the December window opened on Dec. 4. Texas has landed the former Houston Cougars sophomore wide receiver Matthew Golden, Clemson Tigers junior safety Andrew Mukuba, and UTSA Roadrunners redshirt sophomore edge rusher Trey Moore.
Texas is still looking to address needs at wide receiver, defensive tackle, defensive back, and potentially tight end and linebacker via the transfer portal early this offseason.