After back-to-back heartbreaking losses in Austin at the hands of California and No. 24 Oklahoma State, the Texas Longhorns are on the road in Fort Worth to attempt to win what could be a shootout with the No. 3-ranked TCU Horned Frogs.
Obviously, this is a matchup ew people believe Texas has any chance to come out of top.
A young Longhorns defense that’s struggled preventing the big play – a unit allowing a 67-percent completion rate on passes thrown at least 10 yards; a mark good for worst among all Power 5 conferences – will be tasked with trying to slow down the nation’s No. 5-ranked socring offense, as TCU is averaging 51 points per this season.
So how can the Longhorns pull off the upset and begin the strides towards a salvaged season?
If Texas wants to win, it has to be able to match points with TCU -- likely 40 or more. If Texas can reach that mark, it could mean good news, as the Longhorns are 82-3 since 2000 when doing so.
To score that often, Texas will obviously have to somehow find a way to get redshirt freshman quarterback Jerrod Heard some time to make plays, the backs will need to contribute much more than two and three yards per carry, and the receivers absolutely must come up with some big plays downfield.
But the offense isn’t expected to be the issue. TCU's Trevone Boykin, a Heisman candidate quarterback, is one of the most versatile weapons in the nation, as he can hurt opponents with his arm and legs. With one of the most fearsome options nationally out wide in senior Josh Doctson, Boykin will look to pick apart a secondary that could at times feature three true freshmen, while a 100-yard per game carrier in Aaron Green also poses a threat out of the backfield.
If Texas has any hope to pull out the upset, the Horns’ secondary will have to play well above their years against a likely future first-round NFL talent. The defensive front will have to force consistent pressure and not simply allow Boykin to pick apart said secondary. And obviously, Texas fans must pray the special teams unit doesn’t find away to lose the game in the final moments, yet again.
How to watch, listen and stream
TV: ABC, Saturday, Oct. 3, 12:00 p.m. ET
Radio: Longhorn IMG Radio Network, KTXX FM 104.9 (Austin), among other participating Longhorn Network affiliates
Online Streaming: TexasSports.com (audio), WatchESPN (video replay)
Weather: High of 85 degrees / Low of 62 degrees / Precipitation 20%