Greatest Longhorn Recruits of All Time - No. 10, Malik Jefferson

Tomer Barazani

While we have time during this COVID-19 crisis, let's look back and reflect at the top 10 recruits in Texas Football History.

Born and bred in Mesquite, Texas, Jefferson attended Poteet High School. The versatile athlete was the center of attention in many different sports including football, baseball and track. During his sophomore season in high school, playing defensive back, Jefferson recorded 105 tackles, 24 tackles for loss, seven sacks, five forced fumbles, and four blocked kicks; ultimately leading Poteet to an 11–3 record and a UIL playoff berth.

Prior to the start of his senior season at Poteet, Jefferson participated in Nike's 2014 “The Opening” camp in Eugene, Oregon. He was also named the preseason Defensive Player of the Year by Dave Campbell's Texas Football. Despite missing multiple games due to injury, Jefferson was able to record 81 tackles on the season, including six sacks and 16 tackles for loss, along with two forced fumbles and four blocked kicks.

After a magnificent senior season, the offers started rolling in from every major program in the country. The five-star recruit narrowed his selection to Baylor, Louisiana State University, Texas, Texas A&M, and UCLA. On December 19, 2014, Jefferson officially committed to play football at the University of Texas at Austin. This was known as one of the main accomplishments for Coach Charlie Strong in his three seasons with Texas. As a true Freshman, Jefferson was named The Big 12 Conference Freshman Defensive Player of the Year for the 2015 season.

In 2018, The Cincinnati Bengals selected Jefferson in the third round (78th overall) of the NFL Draft. Currently, the 23-year-old is playing for the Los Angeles Chargers on a minimum one year, $750,000 contract.

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