Texas coaches have selected Vondrell McGee as the team’s starting tailback, based on the initial depth chart released during fall drills.
McGee, who rushed for 376 yards and four touchdowns last season, will get the first call in a crowded backfield situation because he had a strong fall camp, said coach Mack Brown. The initial depth chart shows Cody Johnson as the backup with Fozzy Whittaker, who has battled nagging injuries during fall drills, at No. 3.
All three backs saw significant playing time last season with McGee gaining the most yards among the returnees. Quarterback Colt McCoy (561 yards, 11 TDs) is Texas’ top returning rusher.
Other notable inclusions on the initial depth chart:
-- Garrett Gilbert, an incoming freshman, is the backup quarterback, ahead of Sherrod Harris, a junior from Arlington Bowie. The players entered fall drills on even footing in the battle to be McCoy’s backup.
-- Greg Smith, a converted offensive tackle, is listed as the starting tight end at a position depleted by injuries in recent weeks. He will be backed up by Ahmard Howard or freshman Barrett Matthews.
-- Christian Scott is listed as a co-starter at one safety spot with Blake Gideon, who started all 13 games last season.
-- Jordan Shipley, the team’s top returning receiver, also is listed as the primary punt returner and kickoff returner.
-- Jimmy Burch