Texas 50: Matthew Golden has big shoes to fill as Houston's No. 1 WR

Samuel De Leon

Share or Save for Later

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Save to Favorites

The college football season begins on Sept. 2 for 12 of the 13 FBS teams in the state of Texas. The lone exception in the Lone Star State is UTEP, which face Jacksonville State in Week 0 to begin Conference USA play. 

As we approach the start of another season, we'll count down the 50-most important players in college football. We'll go one-by-one until Sept. 1 as we enter the top 20.

Previous rankings: 50-41 | 40-31 | 30-21

No. 8: Houston WR Matthew Golden

The History

A four-star recruit in the Class of 2022 from Klein Cain High School, Golden made an immediate impact for Houston as a freshman. He finished second on the team with 38 receptions for 584 yards and set a program freshman record with seven touchdown catches. Golden looked the part of a future number one option at wideout over the last five contests with two 100-yard games and five scores. He managed to carve a role despite often lining up on the same side of the field as star wideout Nathaniel "Tank" Dell, who finished the year with triple digit catches for just under 1,400 yards and 17 touchdowns. 

The Importance

Now that Dell is off to the NFL, Golden is expected to take over the top wide receiver role. Listed at 6-feet tall and 190 pounds, Golden is bigger than Dell and has the ability to line up in the slot and take the top off the defense. He'll need to be steady for new starter Donovan Smith as the Texas Tech transfer acclimates to the new offense in game speed. Golden has quickly developed into the leader for a promising young wide receiver room that boasts four-star freshmen Mikal Harrison-Pilot and Jonah Wilson.

The Outlook

The preseason expectations are ramping up for Golden, who was put on the Maxwell Award preseason watchlist for the best college football player. Much of his production will depend on Smith's play, as all Houston receivers last year benefitted from Clayton Tune, who threw for over 4,000 yards and 40 touchdowns. Even though Golden is the clear-cut No.1 option, he won't have to put up the gaudy stats Dell did for Houston to be successful. Sam Brown returns this season, and the addition of Wyoming transfer Joshua Cobbs should take some of the defense's attention off Golden.

Previous: Texas State WR Ashtyn Hawkins

This article is available to our Digital Subscribers.
Click "Subscribe Now" to see a list of subscription offers.
Already a Subscriber? Sign In to access this content.

Sign In
Don't Miss Any Exclusive Coverage!

We've been the Bible of Texas football fans for 64 years. By joining the DCTF family you'll gain access to all of our exclusive content and have our magazines mailed to you!