Arch Manning, a five-star recruit in the 2023 class, verbally committed to the University of Texas in June, but spent months making official and unofficial visits around the country.
Football programs treated the top-ranked quarterback like royalty, including Texas who spent nearly $280,000 on the weekend they hosted Manning and other recruits for an official visit in June, according to The Athletic.
Nine recruits, including Manning, spent a three-day weekend in June being wined and dined from arrival to departure.
Texas spent more than $21,000 on airfare and transportation alone during the stay, Sam Khan Jr. of the Athletic reported via open record requests.
The recruits stayed at the Four Season hotel in Austin, and were each greeted with custom cakes and an array of personalized refreshments when they arrived.
The school spent $46,696 on 34 rooms booked for the athletes, their families and some of the program’s staff.
The visit to Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium involved introductions to coach Steve Sarkisian – who has been the head coach on the program since January 2021 –and his assistants, and an elaborate photoshoot inside the stadium. Pitstops on the way to the field included a player’s lounge and a barbershop setup. The music on the field was coming from speakers that cost the school $3,359.12 to rent.
To end the first night of the visit, the dinner arrangement for the recruits and their families totaled $29,129.40. The after-dinner parent social produced a pool bar tab of $11,880 – allowed by purchase via donation.
Highlights from day two included breakfast at the stadium racking up a $10,226 check, a facility and campus tour, and a trip to TopGolf for $9,497.72. Dinner at III Forks cost $36,900 and the after-dinner soiree racked up a $31,628.75 bill. The night also included an hour-long cruise accompanied by desserts, an experience that cost $2,357.50.
Ending the weekend at Sarkisian’s house, the players had the chance to spent one-on-one time with the coach. Three days after the trip, Manning announced his intentions to commit to Texas on Twitter.
Four of the nine recruits on the weekend’s visit have committed to the school since.
There was a recruiting weekend with similar activities the following week and the price tag for 14 recruits cost the school another $350,000.
Contact Analis Bailey at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @analisbailey.