Jameis Winston dismantled Pittsburgh in his college football debut on Monday, and somehow Texas ended up involved in the whole thing. Some comments from Winston about his recruitment surfaced Monday; the former five-star recruit said he wanted to play for the Longhorns but never got a scholarship offer from them.
The response from Texas' staff was swift.
I'm being told if Jameis Winston's interest was that strong in Texas, the red carpet would have been rolled out by the #Longhorns.— Chip Brown (@ChipBrownOB) September 3, 2013
Winston's high school coach, Matt Scott, tells a different story, implying that the Texas staff assumed it didn't have a chance at landing Winston and never made much effort to recruit him. It contradicts what Texas sources told both Bruce Feldman and Chip Brown.
"I can tell you this: They didn't call me, and I was on the front line," Scott said. "His dad made it clear he wanted Jameis and I to handle it. I can promise you, they didn't call me and I called them multiple times."
Mack Brown and his staff have taken heat in recent years for missing out on the likes of Robert Griffin III, Andrew Luck and Johnny Manziel, all of them Texas products, all of them great college players, all of them great college players for other programs.
Update: Mack Brown says he was told Winston was a lock to either FSU or Alabama.
Texas did miss on those three players -- and Winston as well, to hear him tell it -- but the nature of those misses may have been overblown. The Longhorns never recruited Johnny Manziel as a defensive back, for example. That was a case of recruiting priorities being aimed elsewhere, and poor timing. It may not look so good in hindsight, but there are a lot of moving parts in recruiting, and that sort of thing is going to happen.
Also, Burnt Orange Nation has some lessons for Texas in light of this continued phenomenon.
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