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Texas Triplets? Johntay Cook on Friendships with Arch Manning, Rueben Owens

One of 2023's top wide receiver targets talks his relationships with Arch Manning and Rueben Owens, and when he could make a commitment decision

The Texas Longhorns are in desperate need of improvement at the wide receiver position, and in the 2023 class, there might not be a more critical target than DeSoto's Johntay Cook.

Cook made a visit to Austin this past weekend alongside top running back recruit Rueben Owens, top quarterback target Arch Manning, and many others.

Perhaps even more interesting, however, is that Cook told that he and top 2023 Longhorns running back target Rueben Owens could very well be a package deal and that Manning isn't far behind.

Arch, Johntay, Rueben
Arch Ruben Johntay
Arch, Johntay, Rueben, Hill

“Don’t be surprised if me and Arch are at the same school whether that’s UT, Bama, LSU, Ole Miss," Cook told Matt Galatzan at the Dallas Battle 7v7 event. “ But I feel like it’s a higher chance that me and Reuben go to college together than me and Arch.”

As it happens, Cook and Owens are both in the running with largely the same schools as well. Most notably Texas, Texas A&M and Alabama. 

Manning, meanwhile, has also taken multiple visits to the 40 Acres, including over the weekend, and already has a budding relationship with both Cook and Owens in his own right, dating back to their first time meeting last summer.  

“I mean me and Reuben we really started building our friendship last year," Cook said. "Me and Arch also. We all were at UT together and they had the Elite camp and Arch threw me that bomb and after that, we were just with each other in the hotel all weekend and just expanded on that. “

But, despite that relationship, powers such as Alabama and Georgia are still in the mix for Manning, meaning anything is still possible for a trio that Longhorns fans hope could be their own version of the Aikman, Smith and Irvin Dallas Cowboys triplets.

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Johntay Cook
Johntay Cook
Johntay Cook Rueben Owens

Until then, Cook still has visit plans, including a visit to College Station for the Aggies spring game. 

“I’m going to the Texas A&M spring game," Cook said. "And then probably Florida spring game.” 

As for a decision timeline, Cook is likely to ride out the process for a while and continue to look for the best fit for himself, telling Longhorns Country that he will likely not commit until the Early Signing Period next December. 

“I’ll probably commit on Early Signing Day," Cook said.

Either way, there will be a long battle ahead over the next year for the three budding stars for Sarkisian and his staff.

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