In truth, I don’t have anything to say until we get to DKR – Texas Memorial Stadium when the Longhorns take on Notre Dame in Week 1.
I never go to press availabilities looking for the holy grail of information. I usually go to read body language, catch chatter off to the side, catch a private conversation with the person we are talking to and watch the players interact with each other.
I love the possibilities for Texas. I think the offensive line will be much better in 2016 than it was in 2015. I would pay to call a passing game with John Burt and Collin Johnson at the outside receiver spot. The defensive backfield could, by 2017, rival the defensive backfield of 2005 that was filled with NFL players. I assume at some juncture if it wasn’t already proven in 2015, foes will get tired of tackling the bevy of running backs that blend speed, power, quickness, and brute force to the backfield.
While Charlie Strong admitted a few weeks ago that the “defense was horrible” in 2015, most of the focus is on the offense.
I like Sterlin Gilbert.
I like Matt Mattox.
I like the structure of the offense.
I like the splits of the wide receivers.
I like the tempo of the offense.
Gilbert talked about having a clean slate with every player. He has talked openly about Tyrone Swoopes, Jerrod Heard, and Shane Buechele. He talked about the installation of the offense, playing young guys, and the attributes he needs for his players to be successful.
Gilbert met with the media for about 24 minutes on Tuesday and while he did say a few things like a “maybe” to whether Kai Locksley would change positions, the lion’s share of what he told us on Tuesday was nothing. He was a mixture of Lou Holtz, Mack Brown, Art Briles, and Lloyd Carr.
Surely, I left some stuff out but it was cliché central on the 40 Acres on Tuesday. By the time it was over, I was proud of him more than anything else. This is all in order…
Fast and furious
Taking what we’ve given them
A lot of energy and effort
Right on track
Willingness to be good
High football IQ
Takes care of the football
Moving the football around
No egos in the room
Win some football games
Play the best guy
People have to raise their play
We have a physicality
Continue to grow
Continue to get better
Great job in the weight room
Set the tone
He’s made plays
About getting better
Room for growth
Setting up guys to be successful
Played a little bit
Spins the ball well
On the fly
Getting them rolling
Getting them going
Getting after it
Gilbert was not trying to mitigate expectations. He was not trying gloss over fears. Gilbert is confident. Gilbert has looked at his offensive personnel and has probably said to himself, “I can win with this…” The Texas offense will be better if for no other reason that the whole offensive staff is on the same page and the offense has an identity and philosophy that will lead to continuity and success. Gilbert was effectively telling us yesterday, “You’ll appreciate us when we win.”
I had one media member get irritated and say, “He talked all that time but really did not say much.” I loved it.
Moreover, Texas fans might love it this fall.