Buy: Texas Pass Defense
Buyers of the Texas pass defense (ticker symbol $DBU) were rewarded with a winning performance against the toughest passing game on the roster. Forcing the first three sacks of the season on Bryce Petty, and holding him to a career worst performance graded the Texas offense to overperform. And with inconsistent Oklahoma QB Trevor Knight heading to Dallas, with only one proven weapon in WR Sterling Shepard, the Horns pass defense looks primed to carry the Horns against the Sooners.
One of the best bets for the Horns to spring the upset against OU would be a strong pass rush and pass defense forcing negative plays of the young Sooner QB, and forcing several turnovers would create a natural hedge against the Horns' own struggling offense.
Buyers of the Texas pass defense will look to two performers to drive high returns: Quandre Diggs isolated on Sterling Shepard in the slot, and Cedric Reed coming off the edge in pass rush. Eliminating the passing game for Oklahoma and allowing Vance Bedford to devote resources to stopping a potent OU run game would be a key to surviving the contest.
Hold: Texas Rushing Offense
Those who had a little more faith than I in the Texas run game, and didn't sell their stock following last week's advice, were rewarded with Johnathan Gray and Malcolm Brown turning in a season best performance against a solid Baylor front. Joe Wickline's reallocation of assets, planting redshirt freshman Darius James at right tackle and sliding the massive Kent Perkins back inside to guard, proved to be a potential answer to the run game's woes. Returns on that right side were immediate, where the pair opened up several run-lanes in Texas's favored outside zone.
The Texas rush offense is becoming a more attractive long position, with the center, right guard, and right tackle all being second year players that should only get better and better with increased reps, experience, and time in the weight room. Stringing together a few more solid performances could make this a stock worth buying. Until then, we're taking a wait and see approach.
What would we like to see against those dirty, dirty Landthieves? Well, complete and utter domination, as we witnessed in last year's contest, would be nice. But that's a little unrealistic for an offensive line that returns nobody from that contest a year ago. We'd like to see the offensive line not allow negative plays by having blockers blown into the backfield. 6' 6" 334 lbs OU nose tackle Jordan Phillips, whose absence in last year's game spelled doom for the OU run defense, will be another tall task for young center Jake Raulerson. Fortunately, taking on Baylor nose tackle Andrew Billings, Texas high school weight lifting record holder, a week ago was valuable experience.
Additionally, running backs Johnathan Gray and Malcolm Brown will need to pick up a few more yards than what is blocked for them. Gray seems to be improving coming off the Achilles injury from last year, showcasing some old Gray wiggle and a little pop against the Bears. And Brown started his torrid finish to 2013 by gaining 120+ yards against the Sooners last year. Time to answer the call on the biggest stage.
Sell: Texas field goal kicking
Gone are the years of Hunter Lawrence and Justin Tucker. Ryan Bailey isn't walking through that door. Neither is Anthony Fera, or even David Pino. Through five games, Texas kicker Nick Rose is 3-7 on FGs this season, and the 9 points barely eclipses the 6 points the unit gave up on a blocked FG returned for a TD against Baylor.
For an offense that struggles to do lots of things, reliable FG kicking would be a huge boon to Texas's meager scoring numbers. But right now, those opportunities would be better spent giving the offense opportunities at using 4 downs to score TDs. We're recommending a pretty strong sell for the Texas's field goal kicking moving forward.
Alright, Texas investors, where are you putting your money this week?