Texas football: 5 most underrated players in Texas Longhorns history

Jordan Shipley, Texas Longhorns. (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)
Jordan Shipley, Texas Longhorns. (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images) /
2 of 5
Underrated Texas football players
Texas Longhorns. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images) /

LB. 851. Scouting Report. (1980-82). Kiki DeAyala. 4. player. Pick Analysis

When it came to getting after the quarterback, nobody did it better for the Longhorns than linebacker Kiki DeAyala. He played for Texas in the early 1980s, right around the time sacks were starting to become an officially recorded statistic. Though it wasn’t official in the NFL until 1982, that didn’t stop DeAyala from bringing down the opposing quarterback 40.5 times in college.

Hot. 5 best seasons in Texas football history. light

In 1982, DeAyala had a tremendous season with 22.5 sacks in that campaign. Texas may have only gone 9-3 that season, but the Longhorns finished as a top-25 team in the nation in the eyes of both the Associated Press and the coaches. DeAyala would play his incredible 1982 season into being a sixth-round pick by the Cincinnati Bengals in the 1983 NFL Draft.

He didn’t go to Cincinnati right way, as DeAyala played his first two professional seasons in the USFL on the Houston Gamblers with superstar quarterback Jim Kelly. Once the league folded, DeAyala came Cincinnati’s way, where he would play two seasons with the Bengals before retiring after the 1987 NFL season. The Bengals would reach the Super Bowl the following season.

While DeAyala doesn’t have any major individual accolades from his time at Texas, he does hold two very important pass-rushing records in school history. His 40.5 career sacks and 22.5 sacks in 1982 have not been challenged in the last few decades. The only Texas pass rusher to come within earshot of either mark recently was Jackson Jeffcoat, and again, he didn’t even come all that close.