Last week, Texas Longhorns defenders took responsibility for 30 missed tackles against the Oklahoma State Cowboys and are now calling a players-only meeting for the defense set for 4:30 on Monday in the latest attempt to improve a reeling unit, sophomore defensive tackle Chris Nelson revealed.
"We just want to look at ourselves, see what's wrong and what we can improve on,” Nelson said.
The first-year starter framed the meeting as a group decision, not one that was called by any particular individual player. The ‘Horns are holding the meeting on an off day, as there is no practice scheduled for Monday. It’s also the first such meeting this season.
The 45-40 loss to the Oklahoma Sooners in the Cotton Bowl on Saturday was the latest in a string of poor defensive performances for the ‘Horns and came days after head coach Charlie Strong demoted defensive coordinator Vance Bedford to take full control himself.
Based on the early returns, Strong’s decision isn’t paying off yet.
Multiple busts in man coverage led to long touchdowns passes to star Oklahoma Sooners wide receiver Dede Westbrook on his record-setting day and also included another crucial 50-yard completion.
Over the last several games, players have also looked indecisive and lacking in confidence at times — this is a group that is often confused and playing slowly.
If there’s any good news here, it’s that the players are taking it upon themselves to get things fixed and don’t feel the need to air grievances in public, as happened several times last season.
Little victories, I suppose.