As the Texas Longhorns football team reels from the school's first 1-2 start since 1998, several important visitors will travel to Austin this weekend to watch the game against Kansas State.
In the 2014 class, the headlining visitor, according to his 247Sports profile page, is Longview (Texas) defensive tackle Zaycoven Henderson, who decommitted from TCU several weeks ago in a rather bizarre saga that feature multiple reports that he decommitted and multiple reports TCU media outlets that he had not. It wasn't until the next morning that Henderson officially took to Twitter to silence the rumors and announce that he had ended his pledge to the Horned Frogs.
The 6'1, 280-pound Henderson is rated as a consensus four-star prospect and has a top six that also . His current Crystal Ball projections are all in favor of the Longhorns, where he would join a class that already features San Antonio (Texas) Warren's Trey Lealaimatafao and New Orleans (La.) St. Augustin's Courtney Garnett at the position.
In the 2015 class, an extremely important visitor is Missouri City (Texas) Fort Bend Marshall cornerback Kendall Sheffield, a consensus five-star prospect rated as the No. 2 cornerback nationally and the No. 22 player overall. Sheffield has been to Texas A&M at least four times since the beginning of June and industry consensus holds the Aggies as the overwhelming favorites at this time, making the visit especially important for the Longhorns as they continue to try to gain ground with the 5'11, 180-pounder.
Equally important in the 2015 class is the visit from Stephenville (Texas) quarterback Jarrett Stidham, a consensus four-star prospect ranked among the top dual-threat quarterbacks in the country and the signal-caller with perhaps the most upside in an in-state group that includes some serious talent in the 2015 cycle. The Kentucky native said he was high on Alabama during the summer and the Stephenville ties to Baylor head coach Art Briles lead many to speculate the Bears are in strong shape for his services.
And there will also be at least one visitor in the 2016 class, as hard-hitting Katy (Texas) safety Collin Wilder will make his way to Austin. A rare starter as a freshman for the state power, Wilder already has an offer from Texas Tech, despite his youth.
So far, the Longhorns haven't suffered any decommitments or even endured a great deal of negative public sentiment from recruits after the two bad losses and the firing of defensive coordinator Manny Diaz. But could another high-profile home loss start to seriously move the needle against Texas with high-level prospects like those that will be in attendance?
Texas head coach Mack Brown certainly hopes that he won't have to find out.