Vegas’ opening line for the upcoming Baylor game was Texas -10.5. It has since moved to Texas -8.5, perhaps due to a complete collapse of faith in betting Longhorn fans that their head coach has any real control over the direction of the program. When the athletic director is meeting with the players and giving them clear expectations for what’s expected of them after games and it contrasts with public statements made by the head coach days prior, that’s a sign the head coach is essentially a lame duck.
A recurring theme is now evident in Texas’ conference games. The Longhorns sputter on offense with a big play here or there and limited production in the run game, while the defense gives up just enough to where the Longhorns need to mount a comeback in the late stages of a game. Texas’ corresponding efforts in the final stretch of conference games is based on spread passing and lucky bounces.
The Baylor Bear program has been racked by COVID issues - 42 players have tested positive so far - and that fact paired with (overly) aggressive contract tracing protocols, has forced them to cancel 3 of their 5 games this season. Those players appear to all be fine now and it looks like it's starting to come together in Waco.
Texas head coach Tom Herman mentioned following his four-overtime loss versus Oklahoma in Dallas he needed to create more “good on good” reps between his first and second team players during the bye week. Like every college football team, the Longhorns use a scout team in order to simulate what the next opponent will run for the starters and backups.
This is not a historical reprise of the intricacies of every hire in Texas football history. Let's keep this manageable. What I will illustrate is how often Texas, a clear Top 10 national football program, has thought small and/or hired unproven more often than not in its program history. History does not repeat itself, but it does rhyme and our rhymes owe more to MC Hammer than Eric B and Rakim, if you catch my drift.
Over the last few weeks, several aspects of Tom Herman’s Texas program have been exposed as deficient, and those deficiencies have cost the Longhorns opportunities to take winnable games in a wide-open Big 12.