Posted September 8th, 2008 by Matt
Filed under: Feature, Football

Quan Cosby kneeling after scoring a touchdown

Quan Cosby kneels after scoring a touchdown

I wouldn’t say that I ever thought the game against [tag]UTEP[/tag] was in jeopardy, but I will admit I was a little worried and/or disappointed that we only carried a 15 point lead going into the 4th quarter. It seemed pretty obvious that Texas was dominating the game, but they just couldn’t put it away until late in the game. And once again we showed our weakness lies in the young secondary, which didn’t really show much improvement from the previous game against [tag]Florida Atlantic[/tag]. Luckily we still have some time before we have to face OU.

Now let’s see how each position fared.

Quarterback – Overall Grade: A-

[tag]Colt McCoy[/tag] had another outstanding game, throwing for 282 yards and 4 touchdowns. Colt’s one interception came in the 3rd quarter when wide receiver Dan Buckner was not able to get off the line against the smaller cornerback. I can’t really blame Colt on that one. Colt spread the ball around well, completing passes to 7 different receivers. I really like the confidence Colt is playing with so far this year and it doesn’t look he will be slowing down anytime soon.

Backup quarterback [tag]John Chiles[/tag] did make a brief appearance in the game, but did not attempt any passes. He did run twice for a measly 5 yards. He was a total non-factor. [tag]Greg Davis[/tag] needs to get him more involved.

Running Backs – Overall Grade: B+

The highlight of the running back group is the emergence of a possible future star, [tag]Fozzy Whittaker[/tag]. Fozzy missed the first game with a knee injury but showed no signs of that against UTEP. Fozzy showed off his great lateral speed and ability to get around the corner in a hurry. He is the perfect compliment to the downhill slasher, [tag]Vondrell McGee[/tag]. Fozzy ended up with 72 yards on 12 carries for an impressive 6.0 yards per rush average. Vondrell ended up with only 6 carriers and 18 yards. He better watch out, the way Fozzy ran Saturday, he better improve his production if he wants to see more action on the field.

Receivers – Overall Grade: A-

If you remember last week I was a little disappointed with [tag]Quan Cosby[/tag]’s performance. Well you can throw all of that away, because this week he had the game of his life against UTEP. Quan caught 8 passes for 154 yards, including one where he completely burned the cornerback for an easy touchdown. Tight end [tag]Blaine Irby[/tag] found the end zone again with a nice leaping touchdown up the middle in the second quarter. [tag]Dan Buckner[/tag] also scored a nice touchdown off of a Colt scramble, but his inability to get a push off of a much smaller corner ended up with Colt’s only interception. Dan has the size, he just needs to learn to be more physical around the goal line. [tag]Chris Ogbonnaya[/tag] continued to show he is always a threat coming out of the backfield and is definitely a nice luxury to have on 3rd downs.

Defense – Overall Grade: C+

So how do you give up only 13 points and still get a C+? By letting a team move the ball on you the whole game. Well ok, maybe not the whole game, but at times UTEP moved the ball down the field with ease. Texas allowed 3 drives over 65 yards, 4 field goal attempts, and 1 touchdown. The young secondary again looked average at best. [tag]Earl Thomas[/tag] is supposed to be the one all of the coaches were impressed with in practice. Well somehow he needs to figure out to translate his success in practice to the field.

The defensive played a decent game, but only started to dominate late in the game when they had finally worn out the UTEP offensive line. [tag]Brian Orakpo[/tag] did end up with 2 sacks, but with their size and speed they should have dominated the whole game. Linebacker [tag]Roddrick Muckelroy[/tag] had a ridiculous game, racking up 14 tackles and returning a fumble 26 yards for a touchdown. Overall the linebackers played pretty decent.

Special Teams – Overall Grade: B+

Quan Cosby had an impressive game at the wide receiver position, but he also made an outstanding play on special teams. Quan caught a missed field goal right on the edge of the endzone and alertly returned the ball all the way to the UTEP 35 yard line. Texas scored easily and basically put away the game right there. The kick-offs were much improved from last week, but that is probably due to the high altitude in El Paso. We’ll see how that goes next week.

Overall – Overall Grade: B+

I give Texas the same rating as last week. Not too great, not too bad. They definitely need to sure up some things in the secondary, but luckily there is some time for them to improve. And besides, right now Colt is on fire and the offense is rolling, so let’s save the worrying for a few more weeks.

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