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Ten Questions for Texas Football: (3) Lessons from 2008

A short notice business trip to Washington D.C. kept me away from the series for a while, but with just a few days left to kickoff, we'd better get moving...

Previously in 'Ten Questions': (1) The 2009 Narrative, (2) We're Texas.

After the jump: Lessons from the 2008 season.

3. What did we learn in 2008?

So much to discuss, so little time to get it all out. Shall we bulletpoint? We shall.

  • It is a mathematical certainty that Bob Stoops and Jim Tressel can never meet in a BCS Bowl game.
  • More math: Asking Charlie Tanner to reach block while rushing from one's own end zone is worth two points.
  • Aaron Williams' freshman season was incredibly impressive. Perhaps, though, not surprising.
  • At its best, this Texas team can beat anybody, and badly.
  • Will Muschamp's defenses are damn physical, and they play with heart.
  • Moving away from the links now: Anyone else wonder whether the commitment to rush from under center is to 2009 what the Q Package was to 2008? There's a lesson in there...
  • Colt McCoy took a lot of hits last year, and that number was down from 2007. Forget the completion percentage and throw it away from time to time.
  • There's something to be said for being sportsmanlike and pulling the first teamers with an insurmountable lead. There are no bonus stickers (but are tangible downsides) to having the second teamers run-run-run-punt.
  • Great special teams play can and often does play a vital role in big games. Does Texas beat OU without the Shipley return? Does it lose to Texas Tech without the punt downed on the 1? For that matter, does it make the comeback without Shipley's punt return?
  • Same song, different tune: You could argue Malcolm Williams, Jordan Shipley, and Aaron Williams were Texas' three most athletic players. You could also argue they were the team's three best special teams players. I'm just sayin'.
  • Big 12 officials could not identify a holding infraction if Trent Williams fashioned his shoelaces and jockstrap into a lasso, slung it over Sergio Kindle's waist, and tied him to the goal post. There is, perhaps, an adjustment for our coaches to make?
  • Historian: Over a century of college football history suggests Colt McCoy will not complete 77% of his passes in 2009. Statistician: Expect some regression to the mean.  PB: Texas needs more big plays.
  • We saw last season how strength up front can help while the secondary gets up to speed. So long as the inverse is true, Texas' defense can be special.

What other lessons from 2008 are on your mind as the season opener draws near?