Last summer, my father and I were enjoying a round of golf and while proceeding from one hole to the next, we rounded a thicket just as a squirrel jumped out in front of our cart. Unfortunately, the chance encounter would leave both the squirrel's hind legs smashed and broken. After stopping, we got out to find the squirrel still pawing the concrete, still trying to run as if it hadn't realized the back half of its body had been devastated.
After realizing for myself what had happened and what was inevitable, I moved the squirrel off the path and went to find a big rock to put it out of its misery. But when I came back with the rock, the squirrel was not there and had moved further into the thicket to die on his own terms.
Perhaps a bit extreme, but that's the only thing I can think of to describe the feelings of futility and helplessness I'm experiencing watching the 2010 Texas Longhorns. Even worse, I'm not even sure who the squirrel is in this analogy: Gilbert, Coach Brown, this season, or a combination of all three. Hell, at this point, the squirrel probably represents my emotional dependence on the fortunes of this football program because my heart just filed Chapter 11.
But I think I'm finally beyond being mad-angry and just going mad-crazy. In fact, my wife got really upset with me last night because I just started laughing after each time the Horns shot themselves in the foot. For a team that is less than a year removed from a national championship berth, it just seemed so impossibly ridiculous that they couldn't do anything right. And in my mind anyway, there was nothing left to do but laugh.
So why is this happening? I don't know and I'm not going to waste your time with some crazy theory about there being some huge conspiracy or internal turmoil.
Like many of you I'm sure, I also watched Gameday yesterday to see if the so-called experts had any answers or perspective on the situation only to hear Lee Corso claim that Mack Brown "had lost the team." That's some great reporting, Lee. I can't wait to hear you explain why Mack had lost the team and what he could do to find them? Surely your days at Indiana made you an expert on the subject of futility.
Unfortunately we went to commercial break and Captain Ass Hat didn't bother to tell us what Mack should do to find the team. And that's because, like everyone else including Mack Brown, Corso doesn't know. If they did, it would have been done by now.
Honestly though, I don't think Mack's lost the team. Believe me, those players want to win just as bad as Mack does, if not more, and for no other reason than just to stop getting yelled at. And I do agree with Mack, they probably have lost confidence. You would too.
So now what do we do? Nothing, we laugh at the rain. This season is beyond salvaging, so let's embrace the suckage knowing it won't last forever.
From experience, we know one of two things is going to happen, either Gilbert's going to get a whole hell of a lot better or Case McCoy's going to step in and give it a shot. Either way, our fortunes will change sooner or later. You know this because the talent is still there and still coming to Texas. Sure, Mack may also have to make some coaching changes in the off season, maybe even including himself, but something will happen.
Until then I'm just going to enjoy the ride and embrace what it feels like heading into a game having no idea what Longhorns team is going to show up. Seriously, what else can you do?