Ryan Perrilloux’s name still draws hard looks and ire from the Texas faithful.
He was supposed to be the next quarterback. The one after Vince Young. The one who would continue to build on the foundation that Mack Brown had laid at Texas.
Throughout the fall of 2004, Perrilloux was considered the prize of the 2005 recruiting class. The quarterback was setting records left and right at East St. John's High School in Reserve, La. And despite receiving heavy pressure from LSU and many others, Perrilloux remained steady to his commitment to Texas. Until, suddenly, he wasn’t.
At the last minute, Perrilloux switched to LSU and was considered a huge get for Les Miles in his first recruiting class with the Tigers. As it turned out Perrilloux was a huge bust. But the just-in-case quarterback Texas had snagged, Colt McCoy, was not.
Five years later, with hindsight as a guide, it turned out McCoy should have been the headliner in this rather small class of 15. Although, really as this class matured it became littered with headline players like Jamaal Charles, Quan Cosby and Jermichael Finely
Most underrated: Colt McCoy
McCoy was a reach. He was a 6-foot quarterback from a small school, Jim Ned, who didn’t have a big arm and wasn’t highly sought after by most of the big boys. Texas A&M offered but beyond that Texas just had to beat out the also-rans in the Big 12.
That’s how Texas was able to offer so late, get an official visit from McCoy in January and get his commitment just two days later on Jan. 23, 2005.
After a redshirt season, McCoy grew to be one of the winningest and most-decorated quarterbacks in Texas history. He is the only quarterback in NCAA history to win 10 or more games in four straight seasons.
In 2008-09, McCoy led Texas to a 25-2 record. He was knocked out of the BCS title loss against Alabama in 2009 early in the first quarter.
Biggest get: Jamaal Charles
Again this wasn’t a class filled with flat-out stars. Texas, which had a hugely successful class in 2002, was just trying to full a few holes here and there. It turned out Charles knew how to find holes on the field and get through them.
The running back from Memorial (Port Arthur, Texas) became a three time all-Big 12 selection. He rushed for more than 3,300 yards in his three years, including 1,619 as a junior in 2007. Charles declared for the NFL Draft following his junior season and was picked in the third round by the Kansas City Chiefs.
Biggest bust: Michael Houston
The issues with running backs continued for Texas. Houston wasn’t as highly regarded as Charles, but there was enough talent there that Texas decided to go out of its comfort zone -- the state -- and bring in the prospect from Montbello High in Denver.
Houston spent one year at Texas before transferring to Washington. He was arrested while redshirting for the Huskies for stealing a cab.