Author Archives: Ian Boyd

About Ian Boyd

Ian moved to Austin as a 9-year old, chose the Longhorns over the Aggies thanks to Ricky Williams and never looked back or thought twice about it. After graduating from The University in '09 with a History degree, he's been writing about the strategies and trends of Longhorn football and the game in general.

Inside the Gameplan: Todd Orlando’s defense

Malcolm Roach (Will Gallagher/IT)

From the beginning it was always Charlie Strong’s intention to install a run-based, ball control offense that could beat down Big 12 defenses and protect his own defense. His once innovative 3-3-5 defense was heavy on disguised blitzes and shifting fronts designed to disrupt opponents. Gameplans for college defenses rarely have enough disguise or variety to hold up under the microscope of spread offense for 70+ snaps a game.

Inside the Gameplan: What to watch for in Houston’s bowl game

Major Applewhite at the Alamo Bowl in 2012. (Will Gallagher/IT)

While Major Applewhite is officially taking over Houston for their bowl game (the Las Vegas Bowl), both of Herman’s Cougar coordinators be there for this game and Applewhite will be incentivized to make this game count as he seeks to continue the program momentum built up by Tom Herman. If you want to get a final glimpse of what Herman’s Houston team looked like and aren’t one to dig up old games on YouTube, this is a great opportunity.

Inside the Gameplan: How does Herman win at Texas?

Patrick Vahe. (Will Gallagher/IT)

One of the most overlooked aspects of college football is the way that every program and every recruiting base is different. There’s tremendous overlap that’s easy to pick up on but there are also differences from state to state and program to program varying from resources, weather, demographics, and culture that really add up. Consequently, different programs are going to reach their ceiling through different strategies.

How to beat TCU

Texas vs TCU. (Will Gallagher/IT)

Perhaps the biggest ramification of a win against TCU on Firday would be Texas achieving bowl eligibility after a one year drought. The bowl games themeslves are largely worthless exhibitions, a sideshow to the real achievements represented by winning your conference or reaching the playoffs. However, they carry a lot of fun and perks for the players and some valuable extra practices for the coaches that could be very useful for a program with a lot of youth and a weak grasp of fundamentals.

UT’s roster for a new regime

Shane Buechele. (Will Gallagher/IT)

The subject of the next football coach at the University of Texas is a big one that we’ll be exploring from a dozen different angles over the course of the offseason. Right now it seems like Tom Herman is the most likely candidate and everyone wants to know “what could we expect from a Herman Texas in year one???”

Here’s just an early snapshot of Herman’s offensive strategy and how it translates to the current Texas roster.

Inside the Gameplan: What’s next for Texas?

D'Onta Foreman. (Will Gallagher/IT)

The West Virginia game was the perfect microcosm of the limitations of this Texas team. The Longhorns have the most athletic roster in the entire conference and they play hard every week. In some respects, such as the run game, they’re also highly skilled, but mostly it’s just a team of great athletes fighting like hell every week to get the win. When it comes to the finer points of winning football games such as situational play, fundamentals, or special teams, fielding a pack of untrained dogs doesn’t cut it.

Five Quick Thoughts: WVU 24, Texas 20

Shane Buechele. (Will Gallagher/IT)

What a roller coaster season this has been.

The game ended with Shane Buechele talking to WV CB Rasul Douglas (game MVP) and Dana Holgorsen jumping all over his DC Tony Gibson in excitement. The Mountaineers’ “all or nothing” defense, which again was birthed out of the need for something that would allow them to hold Baylor under 60, proved to be effective once again as they held Texas’ young Veer and Shoot offense to only 20 points in a huge road victory for West Virginia and their Big 12 title hopes.