A No. 20 Texas Longhorns team depleted by opt outs will put head coach Tom Herman’s undefeated bowl record with the program on the line on Dec. 29 in the Alamo Bowl against the Colorado Buffaloes at 8 p.m. Central on ESPN.
It’s the second straight year that the Longhorns will head to San Antonio for the postseason — in 2019, Texas stomped No. 11 Utah, 38-10 — and the first meeting between the two teams since 2009. The Buffaloes left the Big 12 in 2011.
This season, however, the Horns have to overcome the loss of five of the seven team captains to opt outs and the loss of senior center Derek Kerstetter to injury. Of those team captains, only senior quarterback Sam Ehlinger is set to participate in the Alamo Bowl.
Like every other team in the country, Texas will play on a condensed bowl practice schedule with the conference championship games — and therefore the bowl selection process for most program — pushed back by a week.
The Horns also missed the game reps from the canceled game against the Jayhawks after a number of positive tests in the program forced a pause in team activities and limited practice time over the last several weeks.
Without much on the line in this game, as evidenced by all those opts outs, the most important thing for the program is the development that will happen for freshmen offensive lineman who will play like Jake Majors at center and Andrej Karic at left tackle, as well as Jerrin Thompson at safety.
Colorado will enter the game with a 4-1 record. The only loss game against Utah last weekend, leaving Colorado ranked No. 61 at SP+ with the No. 66 offense and No. 55 defense.