Early on it appeared as though Texas hadn't really come into this game with any heart or interest in finishing the year strong. Then Sam Ehlinger hit Malcolm Epps for a 36-yard gain and finished with a 10-yard TD run of his own to put Texas back in the game at 14-6 (they missed the XP). The Texas offense started to come alive and after they found the on switch they kept going and poured it on for a 49-24 win.
The muddled nature of Herman's explanation for why his offense was abysmal for the second consecutive game tells the story of why his own side of the ball has collapsed in the crucial third year of his regime. Both Baylor and Iowa State play defenses designed to handle the stresses of spread football and Herman has simply lacked answers in response.
In the Big 12 conference, coaching staffs are pretty ruthless about game planning to personnel. The nature of a spread league is such that if teams can find a weak spot on your depth chart, they can expose it in high stakes situations. There were a number of matchups in this game that needed to be game planned by either side to avoid problems and then a few matchups that offered opportunities.
Somehow there’s still an outside shot of Texas making the Big 12 championship game. They don’t really deserve it, having blown the Iowa State and TCU games with ridiculous mistakes while also nearly blowing both of the Kansas games. The running theme to the season has been, “did Texas manage the game so that Sam Ehlinger was in position to win or so that the defense was in position to lose?”
That game absolutely looked like two heavily flawed teams with conference title hopes leaving everything they had on the field in pursuit of a big win. Evidently Iowa State's bad luck streak was no match for Texas' horrendous initial game plan and then end of game management.
Texas’ inherent advantage against downhill, ball control teams bore out again in their 27-24 victory over Kansas State. As skilled and multiple as the Wildcat senior OL and run game may be, Texas had them beat in the trenches with their superior DL play. K-State’s attempts to run power from multiple formations then use that to create play-action fell flat because they couldn’t control the box with their base schemes.
Texas got back on 2018 form in this one, finishing off the Wildcats at home with a last minute field goal by Cameron Dicker. Texas carefully set up the field goal to take place with time expiring by having Sam Ehlinger take some goal line slides to force timeouts from Kansas State and turn the final drive into a 13 play, 67 yard affair that drained all of the remaining 6:45 off the clock before setting up an easy Dicker game-winner with time expiring.