Texas defender Curtis Brown pursues receiver DeSean Hales after he caught a pass during a public spring practice.
Last year: After redshirting the 2008 season, Hales finished last year with only one reception, a 2yard catch against Colorado.
Why he’s important: Hales came out of nowhere this spring. In the two open practices, his rapport with Garrett Gilbert was obvious, and the orange-white game merely underlined it when Hales caught three passes for 77 yards, including a 41-yard touchdown. With Gilbert in his first season as a starter, having targets he’s comfortable with is important, and Hales could be one of those guys. He might not start, but if he maintains his productivity in August that he showed in the spring, he’ll play a big role.
Best-case scenario: He picks up this fall where he left off in the spring and provides punch and depth at a position where several young and inexperienced players will get a chance to shine.