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Longhorns Spring Depth Chart Outlook: Looking For Linebackers

The Longhorns will have some experience but also some major questions at the linebacker spots in 2022

The Texas Longhorns have been hard at work over the last few weeks in the transfer portal, adding Ohio State defensive back Ryan Watts and Alabama tight end Jahleel Billingsley to the roster.

However, the Longhorns are still looking to fill a major need at the position, where they struggled mightily throughout the majority of the 2021 season.

Texas did receive a boost when weakside linebacker DeMarvion Overshown elected to forgoe the NFL Draft and return to the 40 Acres for another season, but there will be a significant lack of depth and talent to build off of without utilizing the transfer portal.

As of right now, however, Pete Kwiatkowski and Jeff Choate will have to work with what they have, as they attempt to improve a defense that was one of the worst in the Big 12 in 2021. 

So who will lineup next to Overshown this spring? Stick with LonghornsCountry.com as we break down the Longhorns spring football depth chart outlook and make sure to check out the other positions we've covered.

Quarterback

Running Back

Wide Receiver

Tight End

Offensive Tackle

Interior Offensive Line

Pass Rushers

Defensive Tackle


WILL LB 1 DeMarvion Overshown

Texas linebacker DeMarvion Overshown showed time and time again he might be the most consistent player on the Longhorns defense. He will have a chance to prove it one more time in 2022.

Overshown announced on Twitter he would take use of his final year of eligibility to return to the Forty Acres next season. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, players were granted an extra year by the NCAA.

The fourth-year linebacker played in 11 games under first-year defensive coordinator Pete Kwiatkowski. Overshown led Texas (5-7) in tackles (74) and was tied for the team lead in tackles for loss (5.5). He also recorded two sacks. 

Overshown did not play in the season finale victory over Kansas State due to a foot injury. He also missed time against West Virginia and Oklahoma State due to lingering injuries.

A semifinalist for the Butkus Award, Overshown gives Texas a consistent presence at linebacker. Texas struggled to find reliable play at the second level due to injuries and lack of production from fellow linebacker Luke Brockermeyer. 

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MIKE LB 1 Jaylan Ford

As the odds on favorite to begin the spring as the starter at the Mike linebacker spot, Jaylan Ford is entering his third season on the 40 Acres and has played in 22 games with three starts.

Last season, Ford served as the primary backup for senior Luke Brockermyer but saw the field extensively. He had 53 total tackles and six tackles for loss, including a season-high 12 stops against Oklahoma State. 

SAM LB 1 Ovie Oghoufo

As we mentioned in our edge rusher preview, Oghoufo will do a bit of everything in Pete Kwiatkowski's defensive look. He'll line up with his hand in the dirt on some plays. The next, he'll blitz as the strong-side linebacker.

Oghoufo's main job is to pressure the quarterback. Last season, he finished with only two sacks but also recorded six quarterback hurries and nine total pressures. Against the run, Oghoufo also recorded 5.5 tackles for losses

When he lines up at Sam, expect Justice Finkley or DJ Harris to get a shot at filling his Buck role.

WILL LB 2 David Gbenda

Serving as the primary backup for Overshown, David Gbenda was a key depth piece for the Longhorns throughout the 2021 season. There is an opportunity for him to seize the starting job at the Mike linebacker spot as well, but he is a more natural fit at the Will position. 

Gbenda played in 11 games last season, making 27 tackles, including a season-high of seven against both Oklahoma State and Kansas State. He had 20 tackles in the 2019 and 2020 seasons combined. 

MIKE LB 2 Devin Richardson

In 2019, Richardson exploded onto the scene with the aggies, tallying 69 total tackles with two sacks and three forced fumbles, including 12 tackles against Ole Miss in Oxford. That season Richardson earned himself a place Football Writers Association of America Freshman All-American team.

In 2020, Richardson was unable to take the field due to the Aggies program decision not to take the field in wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Richardson will have two years of eligibility remaining in Austin. 

Richardson played in 11 games for Texas in 2021, mostly on special teams. In 2022, that role should increase.  

SAM LB 2 Prince Dorbah

Heading into his third season with the Longhorns, Dallas native Prince Dorbah should see his role increase in 2022. Dorbah has appeared in two games throughout his career with the Texas. 

Dorbag made his debut against UTEP in 2020, making one tackle, and also appeared in the 2021 season against Rice, making three stops. He should have three years of eligibility remaining in Austin.


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