Watch out. It took 14 games to find a QB and match him with an offensive plan but new offensive coordinator Jay Norvell inserted Jerrod Heard into the lineup at Texas and the Longhorns actually looked like a FBS team Saturday night in Austin.
Coach Charlie Strong stood like a stone statue during the 38-3 pounding at the hands of Notre Dame. One could only assume he was wondering what to do about his 'same old same old' offense consisting of three and outs and no real threats. For three games in a row, even broken up by spring practice, summer workouts and pre-season drills - nothing. Nada.
Let’s face the facts - without a clear cut conference champion the Big 12 was left out in the cold for the first College Football Playoff in 2014. Somebody screwed up big time. TCU, led by Coach Gary Patterson went into the heart of SEC Country, the Peach Bowl in Atlanta and destroyed the Ole Miss Rebels, who had upset Alabama earlier in the year. Baylor, once again, was upset in a bowl game by Michigan State in the heart of Big 12 country, AT&T Stadium in Arlington. Both teams could have been in College Football’s first playoff - but without a clear-cut champion the committee put Big 10 champion Ohio State ahead of both Baylor and TCU.
Just in case you are interested the 2015 Football Preview issues are now on sale and if they are really in the know a 6-7 record for Texas would really be a surprise. I mean this in a bad way. Except for Rice, California, Iowa State, West Virginia, Kansas, and Kansas State, the predictions at this point don’t look good for the Longhorns.
So there I was, face to face with Texas head coach Charlie Strong. He had just made an impassioned speech to over a 100 ex-Longhorn football lettermen and their guests in the Red McCombs end-zone suite. A beautiful place with a magnificent view of DKR-Memorial Stadium. He had mentioned that any former lettermen could call ahead and be granted access to watch practices this next season.
Call it Swoopes last stand. I enjoyed Ian Boyd’s interesting Inside Texas ideals on how to unlock Tyrone Swoopes as a winning QB at Texas. I hope he is correct if the Longhorns end up having to go with him in 2015. However, I don’t believe that he can ever breakthrough against a top team, and here are the reasons for that:
“Let’s kick their ass.” Those were the words Johnny Treadwell spoke to me before kickoff of Longhorn games from 1961-1962. We were on either side of our kickoff men Eldon Moritz in 1961 and Toby Crosby in 1962 and number 60, Treadwell, would look across at me and give me his short to the point battle motto for games against Oklahoma, Arkansas, Rice, A&M, and our bowl games.
6-6. I didn't see that coming. For the last month, the Texas football team has shown tremendous growth. They continued to play outstanding on defense, cleaned up the kicking game, and Tyrone Swoopes showed progress.