Big things are coming for Texas in 2013: Especially for Junior quarterback David Ash. I’m not calling for an improvement over his sophomore campaign. I’m calling for a transformative season. A season in which each and every one of us has to applaud and give credit where it is due. A season that will require Ash to be mentioned in the same conversation as (gasp!) Layne, Street, Applewhite, Young, and the McCoy (the good one, not the amateur film maker).
Yes. You’re correct — you just read that.
Colt McCoy left Texas as the winningest college quarterback of all time. His junior and senior seasons were two of the best ever by a Texas passer. Check out McCoy’s stats for a reminder of just how great he was in his career and his two Heisman finalist seasons:
Here’s where I feel Ash will be for the upcoming season. Yes, his predicted passing total of 4,014 yards surpasses McCoy’s best year of 3,859 yards (2008). The 36 touchdown prediction also surpasses McCoy’s best year of 34 (2008). This is where I get crazy, the point where if you had yet to question my sanity-you begin to. I think Ash out rushes McCoy’s best year as well. I should be on medication and a strong dose of it, correct? Ash will come away with a grand total of 780 yards and 9 rushing touchdowns. That total surpasses McCoy’s best season on the ground (561 yards in 2008), but falls short in the number of touchdowns (11, in 2008). It also surpasses the best single-season passing yardage and touchdown totals of Vince Young in 2004 (3036 yards/26 touchdowns), Chris Simms in 2002 (3357 yards/ 21 touchdowns), and Major Applewhite in 1999 (3357 yards/21 touchdowns).
Check out my predictions for each game in 2013:
This would be a monumental season for Ash and the Longhorns. An 11-1 record places them at the top of the heap come play-off time and poised to fight it out for a national championship. Quarterbacks over time have shown the most growth between their sophomore and junior seasons. It will be interesting to see how well Ash performs when he has an Offensive Coordinator that will make it imperative to get the ball to his best play makers in areas where they can maximize their abilities. No more multiple shifts and personnel groupings.
Yes, I am pumping sunshine. Bask in it. Soak it in.
I can’t wait to see the first time the Longhorns come out 4 wide with Jaxon Shipley, Mike Davis, Daje Johnson, and Cayleb Jones and either Jonathan Gray or Malcolm Brown in the backfield.
How do you cover that?
Whose the poor linebacker tasked with keeping up with Johnson or Gray/Brown?
Feel free to let me know just how crazy you think I am in the comments below. I’m sure many of you will have something witty to say. I will be more than happy to eat crow if I’m off base and rest assured I will say “I told you so!” if given the opportunity.
Here’s to hoping I get to do that a minimum of 12 times next year.
The Texas offense will be better in the next season due to the departure of offensive coordinator Bryan Harsin and his manic, almost bi-polar play selection. Major Applewhite remains Co-Offensive Coordinator, but will now share the role with wide receivers coach Darrell Wyatt. What will make 2013 better than 2012 is that Major Applewhite will be doing what he should have been doing for the last two seasons: calling plays and coaching quarterbacks.
The Alamo Bowl is a small sampling to draw conclusions from, however, it showed that Applewhite has the ability to maximize the talent on offense. He crafted roles for guys based on their unique skill sets. Absent from the Alamo Bowl was Harsin’s dogged insistence on forcing round pegs into square holes. Applewhite didn’t try to outsmart anyone; no mass substitutions, no multiple shifting at the line of scrimmage, no trickery. The game plan wasn’t perfect, but it showed one key element that seemed absent for much of the past two seasons: the ability to adjust when the original plan wasn’t working.
Simply put, Harsin wasn’t a good fit at Texas. The players didn’t respond to him. They didn’t relate to him. Harsin wasn’t a Texas guy. Major Applewhite is Texas. Every recruit in the Southwest knows the name. Their mothers and fathers remember the Big XII Championship game and the Holiday Bowl. Applewhite has the infamous “It” factor that Harsin lacked.
Please don’t get me wrong… I don’t think the 2013 season will be all sunshine and rainbows, but we will see a more cohesive team. We will see more discipline. We will see more accountability. We will see more heart. The old saying, “Attitude reflects leadership” certainly applies here. I don’t see this next iteration of Longhorn football cowering to Oklahoma or self-destructing against West Virginia.
I heard Trent Dilfer last week discussing the Harbaugh brothers and he said, “they get the most from the least and the best from the best.” This immediately made me think of Applewhite’s Alamo Bowl press conference quote when asked about the differences between his offense and Harsin’s. He replied, “…I’ve always felt like even as a player this game is about players, put [the ball] in the best guys’ hands and let them make plays. I think sometimes we over think it a little bit as coaches, so I’m excited to watch these guys go play.”
I’m excited to watch these guys go play as well.
Watch this video below and it will give you a taste of what the players think of Applewhite:
OK. I do not want Coach Davis to drive up to the Moncrief-Neuhaus Athletic Center and unpack his things. I do however want us to think of the concepts that Greg Davis learned on the job to help Texas make an impressive run to unprecedented glory on the 40 acres.
We saw how the offense sputtered around in the first half of the Valero Alamo Bowl until something clicked to help propel the Longhorns to a 31-27 win. What clicked? Something that Coach Davis learned when installing the spread offense. You need to have a threat at the quarterback position. Look at what is happening to the teams in the Big XII, A&M, Oregon, Ohio State and even the NFL. Coaches across the country are realizing that you need the quarterback to be a threat to run and throw. College kids want to know that they have a chance to go to the next level. Look at the success that the Redskins and Seahawks in the NFL are having with rookie quarterbacks that can run. You cannot have a QB that is destined to run every play, but you do want one that is mobile in the pocket and can be a “threat” to run to make defenses think.
One of Greg Davis’ faults was the thinking that Texas can out talent the opponent no matter the scheme. Bryan Harsin brought the schematic and creative advantages that the UT offense needed. Unfortunately, Coach Harsin fell in love with only certain plays for certain players where the offensive packages were more important than the talent that was out there. The SEC offenses (specifically Bama) which is what Mack Brown wants to emulate with a grind it out running game that does not rely on the quarterback to win the game is no longer viable. Look at how Louisville with its dynamic quarterback put it on Florida in the Sugar Bowl. And who single handily brought down Alabama in their own back yard, but Johnny Football. Look at what Nick Saban said about the no huddle offense before he ran into the Heisman Trophy winner which is predominantly lead by a fast break quarterback.
Greg Davis used the threat of a running quarterback with a wide open passing attack which opened up lanes for the running backs. In case you forgot, we have had individual 1,000 yard rushers while Davis was calling the plays. No Longhorn running back has yet to reach over 780 yards rushing in the past three years under the so called smash mouth running game (OL needs to share in some of the blame). My prediction is that Johnathan Gray will be the next 1,000 yard rusher to join the last back to do that Jamaal Charles. (2007 – 1,619 yds.)
Where can you find these dual threat quarterbacks? Right here in our back yard. Quarterbacks in high school have 7 on 7 tournaments to hone their skill of reading coverages and making quick decisions in the passing game. The best athletes on the field are playing quarterback in Texas. Hell, Texas is the only state in the country that has a dedicated class time assigned to a sport or PE. Dual threat quarterbacks are being used in every type of classification in the sport. Why do you want to recruit a care taker at quarterback when you need something dynamic to keep stronger and faster defenses guessing? We have dual threat quarterbacks on campus and more are coming up through recruiting. David Ash used his legs to jump start the offense in the bowl game and that running helped him open up the passing game.
Major Applewhite may hold the key to the concepts that Coach Davis used while at UT. Coach Applewhite had a great quote after the bowl win when he said that it is not about the X’s and O’s but about the culture of our program and keeping people accountable to be successful. I beg that Coach Brown will let Major carry out his plan on offense. I venture to guess that Major will use this quote from Michael Jordan to the team this offseason, “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.”
WTH?! (What the Heck?) moments are attempts to find the memorable and the off-beat perspective on Longhorns sports. Here are some interesting moments from the Texas’ game against the Bruins.
1st Quarter (15:00) WTH Bruin Fans?! I have never seen so many empty seats at the Rose Bowl (54,583 in attendance). The Rose Bowl is a beautiful venue, but it was an eye sore with the overhead shots of the stadium where there were plenty of seats to be had.
1st Quarter (12:35) WTH Prince?! UCLA QB Kevin Prince was in a royal mood by supplying the greatest of all gifts which were three interceptions all in the first quarter. The prince became a pauper and sat the bench for the rest of the game.
2nd Quarter (11:36) WTH Malcolm?! We have to call out the freshmen’s first touchdown run of his career as a Longhorn. Malcolm Brown had a spectacular day finishing with 110 yards while running for his first touchdown with only one shoe on. Wonder what he will do to top that feet on his next TD run?
2nd Quarter (:58) WTH Flag Football?! It is amazing to see how Marquise Goodwin has set the tone for this team with his speed and blocking. The hit that laid out the UCLA defender was a thing of beauty to spring Mike Davis for a nice reception. The referee thought that they played two hand touch in California when he threw the flag for the personal foul.
2nd Quarter (:21) WTH Horseshoe 1?! Shout out to Beau Edge from 104.9 The Horn to give the ultimate description for Case McCoy. Not a great practice player and not the measurable you would see from a top ranked prospect but the kid has a golden horseshoe up his butt and he just makes plays. Case scrambles around and makes something out of nothing by hitting Mike Davis for a 25 yard play that eventually leads to another touchdown before the half.
3rd Quarter (9:45) WTH Horseshoe 2?! Case McCoy delivers another crazy play when he throws up a prayer that is tipped by the UCLA defender right into the waiting arms of Mike Davis for 45 yards. Case will make more mistakes as he is growing into the leader of this team. But it does seem that he has the IT factor that we all want from the position.
3rd Quarter (1:40) WTH Harsin?! Coach Harsin is demonstrating how to operate an offense when he uses the wildcat formation to spring Fozzy Whitaker in for a back braking touchdown to put the Horns up by 22 points. Hope that Coach Applewhite is learning the play calling skills because Harsin will be head coach sooner than the Horn fans want to think about it.
4th Quarter (12:29) WTH DB’s?! What a coming out party for this young secondary. Adrian Phillips, Kenny Vaccaro, and Carrington Byndom all had interceptions. But Adrian needs to be singled out for the ferocious hit he delivered to force the ball out from the UCLA receiver which was recovered by Blake Gideon. Great job by the defense to switch momentum after the Horns suffered a fumble deep in their own territory.
Next up for the Longhorns are the Cyclones as they travel to Ames for the game on Oct. 1st.
Thanks for following my WTH articles throughout the season. I appreciate the opportunity to rant about the greatest University sports program in the country. You can continue to follow comments on all of UT sports on twitter at @40AcresSports or follow me at @Horns1991. HOOK EM!!
We’ve had a rocky relationship over the years in a weird masochistic sort of way. When we first all got together, back in 1996, you were an evil, determined mistress, a vision of perfection with no vulnerable, tender side. You dismissed all who came before you – sometimes even violently and machinelike, with no real pleasure to speak of. Color was irrelevant and so was location -your place or theirs, you had your way with everyone and they were forced to do your bidding.
Then when we really did hook up for the first time, on a cold December night in St. Louis, you weren’t exactly at the height of your power. Arizona State came out and coldcocked you three months before. In true Nebraska spirit, you took out your pain and agony on the rest of your schedule. Some of our old friends were soundly thrashed by the Lady in Red, and when it came down to the end, you prevailed over mighty Colorado and were waiting to beat that little upstart Texas for your largely ceremonial dance ticket.
Well it didn’t happen. I overcame everything that you had and everything that you stood for, and emerged from that dome with a smile and a trophy. I rolled and left you a second embarrassment in a single season, something unthinkable to you and everyone you knew. Of course, you chose 1997 to wreck havoc and take revenge upon all that had wronged you, in a year I’d like to forget. You emerged unscathed, walking into Seattle and taking U-Dub’s lunch money early on. You even brushed off Kansas State right after that, whom at the time you didn’t know was to question your power in upcoming years. You were back where you felt like you belonged.
Then 1998 happened. Solich happened. Ricky and Major happened. Something unthinkable happened. I went to your house on Halloween, decided I’d had enough of you and your bullying, and hit you as hard as I could. And you went down, and I left with all of your Halloween candy. Nobody had invaded your crib and came out victorious in seven years. I think that was the day our relationship changed.
1999 saw us both sleek and watchful, confident in our abilities but wary of our foes. You didn’t survive a return visit to my place, but you did get the last laugh in San Antonio. I was the only blemish on your dance card back then, but you could safely say this was not the one-sided relationship it used to be. You could even make the case that maybe we were growing a little fond of each other, but we each had our own stuff going on after that. We were both trying to get from good to great and besides, we both had K-State and Oklahoma to deal with.
By the next time we finally saw each other again in 2002, you were a mess. You’d even let Iowa State and Oklahoma State push you around. I left Lincoln for the second consecutive time victorious, an unprecedented feat. Colorado even wiped their muddy boots on your once-hallowed carpet and strolled away whistling. I wondered what was wrong with you but after kicking the crap out of you in Austin in 2003, I realized I had better things to do. Nebraska could take care of herself.
I was a little busy in 2004 and 2005. I’m not going to apologize. You’d been where I was ten years before, so you understand.
2006 showed me in the position that you had in 1996, albeit a little weaker. But that didn’t stop me from taking a third straight win in your house. I was beginning to think about leaving a note on the fridge so you knew what I liked to eat when I came into town. We were both trying to find ourselves again, being good but nothing special. I’m not going to talk much about about 2007 besides you finally realizing a change was due and I beat you again. I was proud of you for reinventing yourself but kept a healthy dose of skepticism.
2008 was crummy for both of us in different ways. You had to deal with Missouri and Texas Tech’s best punches and you’re still feeling out this whole cougar thing. Traveling to Oklahoma doesn’t sound like much fun – I mean, I always say I’ll meet halfway – and getting beat down there has to be worse. That was the year I learned I don’t like pirates.
I can’t explain last year. I was at the top of my game, feeling all of the rushes and pressure of 2005 again. You rolled the clock back despite shocking losses to Iowa State and Texas Tech at home in back to back weeks. You partied like it was 1995, your salad days. I won’t get into how and why I get second chances and you don’t. It just happened that way. All of the hatred and the fear I had of you in the nineties, though? It’s a complete role reversal. I’m at the top of the hill and you’re trying to knock me off one last time before you go run off with your new friends.
I’m not going to wish you luck, as that would be completely asinine. I do want to thank you for some great memories that have come at your expense over the years. Sure, you’ll always have San Antonio…but I’ll always have Lincoln.
The Statesman ranks the top Texas quarterbacks of all time. Where does Colt McCoy rank?
Football has become a 24/7, 365 days a year sport. We talk about football in the fall. We watch the spring games in April. And we even follow recruiting with the fervor of a Saturday night in Baton Rouge.
But the one aspect of college football that is overlooked is the work done in the summer with 7-on-7 workouts. Vince Young and the 2005 Championship team proved that chemistry and timing built in the summer can propel a team to the top. After a near perfect season in 2008 Colt McCoy and the Texas football team are looking to duplicate the blue print of the last team to make it to the Rose Bowl and win.
The similarities of this year’s team to the 2005 squad are alarming and are sure to be talked about like McCoy and Jordan Shipley’s fishing plans.
Not all aspects of the game can be worked on over the summer without pads, but plenty can be accomplished. Even with more answers than questions lingering to enter this season there is room for improvement. And here are five questions that could be answered over the summer?
1. What will be the base offensive formation?
The lack of a viable tight end may force Greg Davis’ hand when it comes to “go to” formations. In the biggest games of the year, and when Texas needed to move the ball, they abandoned the tight end set for a four wide receiver spread. With McCoy’s accuracy and the depth at the receiver position having a tight end on the field may be a detriment to the team.
From a skill stand point there is no question the fourth receiver will be more talented than any healthy tight end on the roster, unless we assume DJ Grant can emerge as a catcher and a blocker in his first year at the position. Frankly, it would be unfair to ask that of Grant so the question becomes – is it more important to disguise your play calls by being multiple on offense with a tight end or is the talent difference so great that putting a tight end on the field is holding the team back?
I don’t know the answer, maybe Davis and McCoy don’t either, but a huge summer by the receivers combined with no progress from the tight ends might equal a wide open spread attack for the majority of the snaps.
2. Can Garrett Gilbert handle being the backup quarterback right away?
Anyone who has seen or followed the career of the incoming freshman from Lake Travis knows that all signs point to a successful career at Texas and beyond. But all the skill, and smarts, in the world don’t necessarily spell success as a true freshman. In a perfect world Gilbert will only see the field in controlled situations. The plan is to bring him along slowly at the end of games that Texas has in the bag.
The problem is Texas cannot be comfortable with Sherrod Harris as the primary backup. The coaches and the players love Harris but he has never shown he could carry the team if needed. And with the junior recovering from surgery Gilbert has the chance to secure the backup spot if he can prove he has what it takes on the field, in his head, and in the huddle.
Like it or not Texas is one freak play away from starting a quarterback with no experience. With Chiles at receiver the only real hope is Gilbert. There is no doubt the pressure and expectations will not be fair or realistic for the prodigy, but he should have never expected them to be. This is Texas; he’ll learn that soon enough.
3. Who will be the running back?
Realistically this could be a question that isn’t answered at all this season. Mack Brown and Major Applewhite have proven they’ll mix backs in and out as much as they deem necessary. And while they’ll do it again this year, one has to think the staff wants a “go to” guy. A lot of the inconsistencies last year can be attributed to the lack of familiarity with the backs and the offensive line. The running game can be about timing as much as anything and UT had none last year.
It is true that the full running game cannot be featured without pads, but Applewhite has shown he values pass protection and ball security over big play ability. Vondrell McGee, maybe the most complete runner in the backfield, learned this lesson the hard way when he was benched for the entire Fiesta Bowl.
McGee may be the best runner, but it is Foswhitt Whittaker that can excel in 7-on-7 drills because of his ability to catch the ball and run in space. If he can stay healthy and prove he is willing to block Whittaker may finally break out this season.
The other option is freshman Chris Whaley. All reports have the physical freak as being impressive. The coaching staff has all but said he’ll get his shot to compete, so if he can pick up the small things this summer he’ll have a huge chance this fall.
4. Who will start as the third linebacker?
Roddrick Muckelroy and Jared Norton have starting jobs locked up in the 4-3 alignment, but with Sergio moving to defensive end one of the outside linebacker spots are open. The two candidates for the position are Keenan Robinson Emmanuel Acho. Both can rush the passer and both can make plays.
The skill that may separate them, and determine who plays more, will likely who can play in pass coverage the best. This is where 7-on-7 comes into play. With the Big 12 becoming football version of the Blue Angels air show finding linebackers that can stop the run and cover the pass is invaluable. In his short time on campus Robinson has shown the ability to play the pass and that’ what puts him at the top of the depth chart at strong side linebacker.
Texas will play with five defensive backs a lot this season, and that means only two linebackers on the field. Norton, who is a prototypical middle linebacker in the 4-3, has struggled in the nickel formation so if Robinson plays well enough he may be alongside Muckelroy when teams are spread out.
5. Is the work ethic there?
For the first time in a long time Texas overachieved last season. It had more to do with expectations, but the Longhorns had a workman like feel that wasn’t the norm in the last decade. Will Muschamp has gotten a lot of credit for the attitude change, but more credit needs to go to the players and especially the leaders on the team. More than talent, UT lost some big time leaders in Quan Cosby, Roy Miller, and Brian Orakpo.
Those guys kept the young guys in check in practice, off the field, and in the locker room. Texas still has established leaders in Colt McCoy and Sergio Kindle and new leaders are stepping up like Earl Thomas. But until the team faces some adversity no one will know if the team has the backbone they showed in games against Oklahoma and Ohio State last year.
The 2005 team established that ethic in the summer with many players pointing out that they had worked too hard in June and July to let anyone beat them. If this year’s team comes out of the summer with the same feeling another special year could be on the horizon.
Some really cool stats from ESPN’s Big 12 blog on how and his fantastic 2008 season stack up against the best all-time seasons by Texas quarterbacks. Five games into the season, Colt’s QB rating is by far the highest and his total touchdowns are eight more than in 2005. The stats are also a reminder of just how good Major Applewhite’s 1999 season was. Check them out below:
Every game between Texas and OU is huge, but with the rankings and the BCS implications the 2008 meeting carries extra weight. Both teams enter the game as top 5 teams, and the winner not only has the inside track to win the Big 12 South, but also has to be considered the favorite to play for the national championship at the Orange Bowl.
When Texas has the ball
Texas enters the game without a clear cut go to running back, a tight end that can catch, and a receiver that can stretch the field. Yet, the offense has been clicking on all cylinders due to the stellar play of third year quarterback . This week is not the time to try and tinker with things offensively so expect McCoy to have the ball in his hands most of the game. I wouldn’t be surprised to see McCoy throw the ball 40 times Saturday, especially if the Horns find themselves playing from behind. Most onlookers feel OU has the mental advantage heading into these because of the blowouts that started this decade, but none of these players were on those teams. In fact, the Texas players in this game have won two out of the last three against the Sooners, and last year could have easily been won if it weren’t were a few key mistakes by NFL rookie .
Oklahoma’s defense is good, but the secondary is not great. McCoy and his receivers will have a clear advantage in the passing game as long as the offensive line gives him enough time to get rid of the ball. Texas’ line struggled last week in blitz pickup at times, but the coaches and players have suggested that it was due to Colorado playing uncharacteristically. OU will be OU, and and his offense should know what to expect.
I don’t see Texas being able to run the ball consistently against this Sooner front seven. The Longhorn offense has struggled to run the ball against lesser opponents and to expect the light to just come on would be unrealistic. The only chance Texas has of creating plays in the running game is if Fozzy Whittaker is able to play and play well. The added speed he gives the backfield allows UT’s offense to run the zone read much more effectively. I expect the backs to be used as receivers as much as anything else.
This game will come down to turnovers and protection. Texas has excelled in those areas so far in the season, but the level of competition and emotion will be sky high on Saturday. If Texas can control the ball and limit mistakes there is a good chance this offense is able to put up points against Oklahoma.
When Oklahoma has the ball
Oklahoma’s offense is scary good. The introduction of the no huddle as their primary offense gives the Sooners an overwhelming number of advantages. It allows quarterback Sam Bradford to snap the ball before defensive adjustments and substitutions are made. OU’s running game hasn’t been a world beater either as running back DeMarco Murray hasn’t had the same burst he had last year in the Red River Shootout when he took a huge run over 60 yards for a back breaking touchdown.
Texas’ defense has gotten better each week. The secondary play has improved dramatically, but most of it has to do with the pressure the defensive line has been able to produce. It will be interesting to see if the back four (or five when they play in nickel) will hold up if Bradford is allowed time. OU’s line is the best in the nation and it may force defensive coordinator to blitz more than he would like. If Texas can create pressure with the front four it will allow for more players to cover Oklahoma receivers.
I expect UT to handle the Sooner run game, so just like when Texas has the ball expect Bradford to control the game for OU. The quarterback who makes the most mistakes or faces the most pressure will likely leave Dallas as the loser.
The key for Texas’ defense will be to utilize the depth in the front four they have tried so hard to build. If a guy like or can provide pressure when is getting a breather it will make OU’s no huddle offense less effective. For the first time since Bob Stoops took over in Norman I feel that Texas has the advantage in coaching because of and Muschamp. If Texas’ defense keep them in the game all the credit in the world must go to the first year coordinator that has single handily changed the mindset of this group of young Longhorns.
Man the Texas Longhorns sure seem to like the score 52-10, now beating 3 of the 4 teams they have played this season by that same exact margin. Let’s just hope we don’t see the other side of that score this year.
Again the Longhorns looked impressive against dominating the Razorbacks in every aspect of the game. Going into the game I was actually a little worried, but after seeing Casey Dick throw up floating lobs into the secondary, my fears were quickly dissipated.
My favorite stat of the game? Texas rushed for 208 yards on the ground while Arkansas managed only 11 yards. Talk about a butt-kicking.
Let’s see how each position fared in the game:
Quarterback – Overall Grade: A+
Another almost near perfect performance for as he continues prove he can hurt you through the air as well as on the ground. Colt finished with only two incomplete passes going 17 of 19 for 185 yards and 3 touchdowns. Colt also added 84 yards on only 9 carriers and 2 touchdowns. I don’t really like to think about the Heisman so early in the season, but he is definitely making a case to at least be mentioned in the talks.
got plenty of action Saturday since the game was basically over in the first quarter. By now we all know that he can run, but I would like to start seeing him try to become more of a pass first style quarterback. Why not try to develop his passing skills during the game when we are up by 40?
Running Backs – Overall Grade: B
I wasn’t really all that impressed with that impressed with the Texas running game. got the majority of the carries with obviously still trying out the position, but he only managed to average 3.0 yards per carry with a long run of 9 yards. That kind of production against a weak team like Arkansas just doesn’t cut it. Luckily had a pretty decent game averaging 4.8 yards per carry and ended up with 1 touchdown. Right now it looks like Cody Johnson is the best back we have, and as long as he can keep is conditioning up we should be ok.
The one major blemish on the day for the running backs was when showed absolutely no hustle late in the game on a John Chiles fumble, which ended up getting returned by Arkansas for their only touchdown of the game. You can’t totally blame that on Hills, but if you are seeing limited action you need to hustle on every play. I’m pretty sure had a few words for Hills on that one.
Wide Receivers – Overall Grade: B+
It’s really hard to give grades when you beat a team as easily as Texas did on Saturday. The receivers played pretty good all around, but everything seemed so easy it’s hard to say they were “great.” looks like he is the new safety net for Colt now that we know is done for the season. They said it a few times on the telecast, but it really does look like Colt and Shipley are just out there relaxing and playing a game of catch in the backyard. Shipley ended up with 2 touchdowns and added one more. The one nice thing about a blowout win is we get to see some young players get some action. Sophmores and both look to be solid receivers.
Defense – Overall Grade: A
I believe this is the defense’s first A of the season and it is well deserved. The front seven had constant pressure on , and knocked him around so much that I actually almost started to feel bad for him. And for the first time this season I actually started to notice some of the secondary in a positive way. actually made some plays, and ‘s name was called for some other than getting beat. It looks like might actually be getting through to these guys.
returned an interception 81 yards for a touchdown in the 4th quarter on an absolutely horrible pass by the Arkansas backup quarterback. The front seven added 7 sacks with leading the way with 2 for 17 yards in losses. Hopefully we can keep this up.
Overall Grade: A
That was about as dominating a performance as you can have. has to be a little embarrssed with the way he made his debut in this storied rivalry. Texas now gets to start Big 12 play against a team who is looking for revenge after their 70-3 loss in the 2005 Big 12 Championship game.