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The New Mack

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Something happened on Saturday that we've never seen happen before. After Texas came back from a three point to deficit to assert its superiority over the Sooners in the Cotton Bowl, Mack Brown did something unprecedented - he told the media he'd said to Greg Davis that the offense had been too conservative and to open things up in the second half.

Those that follow this program closely know that this is -not- the norm.

Now, before we discuss: here's what we don't know. We don't know whether Mack Brown actually said this during halftime. We don't know whether it was Greg Davis or Mack Brown who decided that things needed to be opened up. We have no idea whether they were in agreement, or disagreement, about what happened in the first half.

What we do know, though, is this. The old Mack Brown would have said to the media after the game, "We didn't do anything differently in the second half. I think we just came out and executed what we wanted to do a little better and the guys made a bunch of great plays."

But not this Saturday. This time around Mack came out and said, more or less, "Yup, I thought things were too close-to-the-vest in the first half on offense and I asked Greg to change that at halftime."

That's unprecedented in this coach's tenure, and whatever -actually- happened at halftime (which we'll never know), the new Mack Brown came out and said something we've never heard him say before. I fully expect both he and Davis to retreat all week, and downplay what was said, but the fact remains that Mack did it. And if it's new, it's news.

I'm having trouble figuring out what, precisely, all this means. But here's what we do know. Texas won the Red River Shootout without Vince Young. Texas beat Oklahoma in a game where they trailed at halftime. Texas made some awfully great adjustments at halftime on offense. In short: the Texas coaching staff outcoached Bob Stoops and the Sooner staff pretty thoroughly. On an afternoon where the best player on the field was wearing crimson and cream, the men in the burnt orange and white were the aggressive victors.

We won't know exactly what happened at halftime, or what Mack's precise motivations were for his postgame comments. But I'm happy knowing that something's changed in Mack Brown since he first arrived in Austin. And it's been an awfully good thing.

--PB--