The last two weekends have been successful for Steve Sarkisian. He has landed four players after making visits. Three 2022 commits and running back Keilan Robinson from the transfer portal.
Sadly, not everything can go in favor of Texas, as a top priority defensive prospect went a different direction.
Linebacker Niuafe Tuihalamaka announced his commitment to Notre Dame on Saturday afternoon. A four-star prospect, the California native chose the Fighting Irish over Arizona State, Stanford, and Texas.
Tuihalamaka was in Austin on an official visit the first weekend of June. He said Austin “felt like home” and wanted to eventually come back. The Longhorns seemed to have made up ground for the linebacker, but a trip to South Bend sealed the deal for Notre Dame.
On the 247Sports composite, Tuihalamaka ranks as the No. 11 linebacker in the country. He will play middle linebacker for newly hired defensive coordinator Marcus Freeman. The four-star is the No. 10 player from his home state of California and No. 102 in the country.
For Texas, the key remaining linebacker target is Sebastian Cheeks. Notre Dame was thought to be a player for Cheeks but with the commitment of Tuihalamaka, there will be no room.
Jeff Choate has already taken a commitment from three-star Trevell Johnson as well. Landing him and Cheeks would be a successful cycle for Texas’ linebacking core.