Top freshmen to watch in 2014

Nick Castillo

Myles Turner: men’s basketball, forward

When McDonald’s All-American Myles Turner put on a burnt orange bucket hat, signaling that he would sign a letter of intent to play for the Longhorns, Turner created a tremendous amount of hype for himself and his future team.

Turner has yet to step on the court for Texas, but the Longhorn faithful have already stared calling him the next Kevin Durant. While Turner may not play the same position, he’s expected to make a similar impact as the 2013 NBA MVP, who played just one season with the Longhorns.

The five-star recruit from Bedford was the prize of head coach Rick Barnes’ 2014 recruiting class. Turner, who is listed at 6 feet 11 inches, was named a top-10 college basketball player by USA Today and was the No. 2 recruit in the nation, according to ESPN. 

Turner came close to choosing the Kansas Jayhawks over the Longhorns, but he, along with many Longhorn fans, feels like he made the right decision.

“I fell asleep [the night before his decision] and, to be honest, I had Kansas on my mind,” Turner told the Austin American-Statesman. “It really hit me when I woke up the next morning: I’m in the state of Texas. I’m a Texas born-and-raised kid. I had a little Texas pennant, and the Longhorns were staring me right in the eyes. I just felt like, dang, I made the right decision.”

Jerrod Heard: football, quarterback

While senior David Ash is expected to return under center this season, freshman Jerrod Heard will play a solid backup for Texas. He led 4A John H. Guyer High School in Denton to back-to-back state championships and threw 22 touchdowns and ran for 2,161 yards and 27 rushing touchdowns during his senior year.

Heard is currently battling sophomore Tyrone Swoopes for the second quarterback position, and, no matter the outcome, he will become a prominent force for Texas in the years to come. Listed at 6 feet 2 inches, 199 pounds, Heard has the ability to make an impact for Texas under new head coach Charlie Strong and rid Texas of its struggles with the quarterback position.

Armanti Foreman: football, wide receiver

With the dismissal of former wide receiver Kendall Sanders, a potential suspension for junior wide receiver Daje Johnson and an injury to senior wide receiver Jaxon Shipley, freshman Armanti Foreman has a chance to play immediately for the Longhorns.

The speedster from Texas City was a consensus four-star recruit in high school and was named the Houston Touchdown Club Offensive Player of the Year during his senior year.

Although Foreman is still learning as a freshman, his speed and skill at wide receiver makes him a dangerous threat.