Well, it’s safe to say that Tom Herman/Todd Orlando and company have brought out the competitive spirit of the Texas Longhorns that has been missing for many years. For the first time in a while I have a feeling in my stomach on gamedays and it isn’t a bad feeling. It’s that feeling that I had when Colt and VY were on campus. Now I’m not saying that this team has that ability right now, but that’s the ceiling that I believe that it has. The Longhorns fanbase is buzzing with nothing but good vibes and will continue to rise with every win and positive outcome.
Now to discuss what happened on Saturday in Austin.
That was one of the better games if not the best all around game that I’ve seen Texas play in close to 5-6 years. It seemed like no matter what was happening, our defense was going to keep bending but never break. The offense never faltered from their game plan (outside of maybe 1-2 series) and that’s what was vital for us to stay in the game. The mood of Longhorns fans has changed drastically since that season opener in DC. There has been many vital components to the Longhorns getting to where they are now in the past 3 weeks and I’ll touch on a couple of those as they coincide with the key factors to winning this game.
3 key factors to the win:
1. Defense. Defense. Defense. This UT defense is getting close to being back to where they were with the like of DBU and dominating games. Todd Orlando devised the perfect gameplan and really had TCU confused and lost all game long. Obviously the execution was there, outside of maybe 2-3 drives. But those drives would’ve torn Texas down in the past and we would’ve been blown out by 20+. The resilience that this defense has shown the past 3 weeks is incredible and is the reason why we are where we are. Two major cigs in this defensive unit are Caden Sterns and Brandon Jones. These two guys are locking down that secondary at the safety position and are absolute game changers. Us Texas fans need to enjoy Brandon Jones while we can, because if he keeps this up he’ll be gone after this year. The only real “negative” I’ve seen is Breckyn Hager. I use quotations there because he’s still a big time impact player and at any given time can erupt for a 3-4 sack game. Right now, he looks like he’s maybe a step or so too slow getting to the QB. He’s getting pressure but just not quite getting there to make that big time sack. I know Hager will turn it around. Stay the course and trust it.
2. Offensive flow. Sam Ehlinger has been able to control the game and be somewhat of a “game manager.” This has more of a negative connotation to some people, but that’s exactly what he’s been doing. He’s managing the game to perfection while still showing the big play ability and grit that we need at that position. The big play targets of LJH and Collin Johnson are something we’ve been lacking in years past and it’s so relaxing to know we have two reliable targets in the WR group. Meanwhile, Ingram and Watson are just chugging along on that run game and continuing to show improvements weekly. The OL is hopefully getting back to full health and will continue to play a huge role in the progress of this team.
3. The 3rd factor to winning this game has to be the atmosphere of DKR. The game day electricity is back and in full force in Austin, Texas. What CDC and his staff has done is unbelievable, consuming/surrounding all of the days activities around the Texas Longhorns Football game is something that UT/Austin has been lacking. He’s came in and made a huge impact in the short amount of time he’s been here. So thank you, Mr.Del Conte. Longhorn Nation approves of these changes and can’t wait for the many many more you have up your sleeve.
Now I’m not saying Texas is back. Because folks, Texas will never officially be back until we’re hoisting that Big 12 Championship Trophy again. That’s the truth.
Are we close? Very much so. If the improvements keep coming then I don’t see why we wouldn’t be “Back” sooner rather than later. It takes time to get where we want to be again. Tom and the gang are finally making strides in the right direction. This team can be the one that changes the tide for many, many years to come. Don’t hide from our past, but use it as fuel to become what we all envision.
UP NEXT :
Saturday, September 29th @ 2:30pm CST
Texas Longhorns @ Kansas State Wildcats in Manhattan, Kansas
Texas Longhorns -34
Kansas State Wildcats – 17
The Longhorns break the curse of Manhattan, Kansas and win (for the first time since 2002) a much needed road game before heading into the biggest weekend of the year.