What Arch Manning committing to Texas means for the SEC in 2024 and beyond

Arch Manning committed to Texas, but his commitment means so much more for a program hoping to rise up in college football.

Arch Manning made a huge announcement with his commitment to the University of Texas. One of the most coveted recruits in college football history has been in the spotlight for a long time, and his choice of college has been a big source of conversation in the community. So now that Manning made his commitment, what’s next? His arrival in Austin has an impact on both the program and the future conference they join.

The Arch Manning Domino Effect

In all honesty, Texas needed this. Everyone’s been making “Texas is back” jokes since they made the national championship game in 2009. It’s a program that’s won the offseason for the last 12 years but only has one 10-win season in that same time frame. Adding Arch Manning feels like the start of a change, one that should make fans feel better about their future move to the SEC.

It all comes down to the domino effect. Steve Sarkisian adding both Quinn Ewers and Arch Manning to the roster should attract other big-time players to consider the Longhorns. They give Texas three quarterbacks with a perfect 1.0000 rating according to 247Sports (the other being Vince Young). The “All gas, no brakes” mantra could take on a whole new meaning if Manning’s commitment takes the Longhorns to new heights.

Sarkisian’s classes ranked 15th and fifth in 2021 and 2022, respectively. His time at Alabama allowed him to witness firsthand how to acquire top-tier talent. Regardless of transfer portal concerns, stacking elite quarterbacks is a great way to build your program. Adding a 6’4″, 215-pound Manning relative yields more merit to your program.

With Texas joining a program run by a handful of schools, they must recruit to compete in the SEC. Sarkisian adding Ewers, Maalik Murphy, and Arch Manning proves he knows where to start and assures fans that they’ll have the most important position figured out for years to come. If Ewers and Manning work out like many believe, it tells recruits that Austin will be the best place to play in the future.

Texas prepares for the SEC

Manning’s commitment gives Sarkisian a huge win after a tough 5-7 season, allowing Sark to show he’s turning things around in Austin. It also reminds recruits that Sarkisian remains one of the best quarterback coaches in the country. Ewers and Manning add to a list that already includes Tua Tagovailoa, Mac Jones, and Matt Leinart. So Manning’s commitment adds more merit to Sarkisian’s program and his abilities as a coach.

Manning and Texas are a perfect fit for each other. The future Longhorn comes with mounting expectations that seem nearly impossible to meet. Texas wants to return to the glory days under Mack Brown. So, in a way, they need each other and need it to work now. Joining the SEC presents a number of challenges that aren’t for everyone, and it feels like the Longhorns are headed in the right direction now.

Texas has everything you need to compete in this age of college football. The Longhorns have elite facilities and boosters with deep pockets … I mean … a burning passion. This program just needs the talent to come to campus and win on the field. They’ve recruited at a high level before, but this is also a program with just three conference championships since 1996. It needs to translate to the field.

Manning and Texas’ next step

Unless Nick Saban’s Little Debbies he eats in the morning have superpowers, he’s going to retire eventually. His program’s dominance simply won’t be the same when he’s gone, and that opens the door for someone else to take his spot. If the Arch Manning Effect takes place, Sarkisian and the Longhorns are poised to enter their name into that discussion.

So yeah, there are still many “ifs” surrounding this commitment, but this is huge. In this day and age, you can’t start building a dynasty without a great quarterback. Texas could be on its way with Arch Manning. If you want a potential preview of how Texas will fit in with their new conference, Week 2 in Austin gives you that.

If Ewers fits well in Sarkisian’s system and finds a way to tear up Alabama’s defense, the hype for Arch Manning’s arrival should only grow. It’s a statement game in many ways — a chance to show growth. Sarkisian’s program has a ways to go, but they can take steps to get there, even if they’re baby steps. After all, one step doesn’t typically get you far, but you have to take it to get somewhere.

Arch Manning just feels like more of a leap.

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