I needed to get the dirt on the Texas Longhorns, so I reached out to @ghgoodrodge of Burnt Orange Nation and he was happy to supply the intel!
Normally I ask for strengths of an opposing offense, but I think Texas’ are pretty well established. Also, our secondary is “questionable” to put it politely. So, what is the weakest spot on this potent Texas attack?
I think inside receiver, which has been Sam Ehlinger’s favorite since taking over as the starter, is a massive question mark. Last week’s starter, Jordan Whittington is out 3-4 weeks, while the guy currently No. 1 on the depth chart is nursing a nagging injury. That leaves campus legend/walkon Kai Money or Brenden Schooler (a familiar surname for Tech fans).
Because of this look for Texas to run a lot of 12 personnel, flexing out one of their TEs as a pass catcher.
BJ Foster became a big story, then a whole lot of nothing. Do you think Herman handles that situation appropriately?
BJ Foster clearly has a temper. He missed part of team workouts in the spring because he punched his car after finding it damaged from a hit and run. Herman wants to use everything as a teachable moment to shape the hearts and minds of these young men. His goal is to win football games, but it’s also to help these players learn lessons that will help them be better once they leave campus. Which is kind of the point of both college and sports.
Giving BJ grace, as well as some pretty harsh consequences from both the coaches and the player-led leadership council, was absolutely the right move.
Speaking of Herman, how’s the mood in Austin? Are people behind the head ball coach?
I think the mood around Herman is cautiously optimistic. Fans have not seen an opener like that in a decade and it put down a lot of fears about the hires being more of the same from Herman.
However, moods turn on a dime in Austin and a lot of Texas fans have an over-inflated idea of what expectations should be. Let a couple of plates start wobbling and ask me again.
Defensively, UTEP doesn’t tell me much about what to expect from Texas. What can tech fans expect From Texas’ defense? And what matchup are you most looking forward to on that side of the ball?
It honestly didn’t tell me much easier. Defensive coordinator Chris Ash kept things intentionally vanilla with his new scheme because you can do that against UTEP. We saw the attention they paid to tackling drills pay off in a big way, because I don’t recall a single missed tackle from last week and I couldn’t tell you the last time I said that.
I still have questions about who are the best two linebackers not named Joseph Ossai are, as well as seeing if the defensive line can consistently generate pressure. So maybe the pass rush against the Texas Tech offensive line.
Last but certainly not least, what’s your prediction for the game? Is this the route most are expecting, or do you see a more competitive contest?
I hate predicting games in Lubbock because I was on the field covering the Crabtree game and I bring that baggage with me to every game at Jones.
That being said, this is the most-talented team Texas has had in a long time and I don’t think Michael Crabtree is eligible anymore. (If only) I have it at 45-24 Texas.