Linebacker Cecil Cherry and running back Duke Catalon transfer from Texas

Aaron Torres

When the sun rose Tuesday morning, Texas had 114 players on its football roster. When the sun set — as the Longhorns were finishing up their fifth practice at Frank Denius fields — they were down to 112 players.

On Tuesday, at about 10 a.m., reports surfaced that freshman linebacker Cecil Cherry would transfer from Texas.

Cherry, a four-star recruit from Victory Christian Academy in Frostproof, Florida, wasn’t at practice.

Early Tuesday, Cherry’s father, Winston, confirmed the reports to ESPN.

"It's just not the right fit for him," Winston Cherry told ESPN. "Once he gets his [release] papers, we'll find him a home with someone who needs him. He needs to be somewhere where he's needed real bad."

Head coach Charlie Strong didn’t confirm or deny granting Cherry’s release.

“I’ve talked with Cecil, and I’ve spoken with his father,” Strong said.

Later Tuesday afternoon, Horns Digest reported that redshirt freshman running back Duke Catalon would transfer as well.

Catalon was a four-star recruit for the Texas 2014 recruiting class from Aldine Eisenhower High School in Houston.  

When asked about Catalon, Strong simply said: “[I’ve] spoken with Duke.”

If Catalon and Cherry decide to transfer to another Football Bowl Subdivision school, each would have to sit out one year.

“We always want guys to stay here,” Strong said. “But it’s also this: Anything you get in this program, you’re going to work for.”

When asked if he was surprised at either player’s decision to transfer, Strong replied sternly.

“We have a lot of guys in this program,” he said. “Let’s focus on our guys that we have here right now.”

Strong said he will move on and focus on having a winning season.

“You have seniors in this program that want to go have a good year,” Strong said. “Let’s focus on that.”