Oh man. Where do we even begin with this week’s roundtable? Hopefully, everyone has been blowin’ and goin’ after last week’s 49-0 victory over Oklahoma. A win over the desperate Sooners was expected, but I don’t think anyone thought it was going to be a record setting one. Is the firehose fully inserted into your mouth now? Or was Saturday’s result the product of a really really bad Oklahoma team?
Cameron Parker (@camerondparker) - The lack of talent on the Oklahoma side was glaring. I mean, the Sooners thought their best chance of winning was reverting to the wildcat formation ONE drive into the game. Didn’t even give Davis Beville a chance to get comfortable, and while he obviously was not going to impact the game in a positive way for the Sooners, it should the OU was pretty hopeless in winning that game. On the other side, I don’t care who was at QB or how bad the offense was for Oklahoma, shutting out your biggest rival is big time. Kudos to PK for having the defense ready to play. Offensively, outside of a few bad throws, Quinn Ewers didn’t look like a freshman. I’m more hopeful for the ceiling of this team but also have to take into account just how truly bad of shape this Oklahoma program is in right now.
Daniel Seahorn (@DanielSeahorn) - It’s a bit of both for me. That is as bad of an Oklahoma team I’ve seen in my lifetime, but at the same time, Texas absolutely DOMINATED them from the opening kick until triple zeroes hit the clock. The Longhorns hit the Sooners in the mouth time and time again until the players on the field and the coaches on the headsets waved the white flag, and I have to give credit to Steve Sarkisian and his team for showing up to the Cotton Bowl with something to prove. This Longhorn team should be playing with a huge chip on their shoulder this year after how last season played out and so far they haven’t got too high or too low from week to week. That’s the approach they will need as they hit the teeth of their conference schedule in the coming weeks.
Gerald Goodridge (@ghgoodridge) - I think it’s both of them. It was very clear that Oklahoma is not the Oklahoma of recent years. They were slow, poorly coached, and seemingly quit. That being said, there have been plenty of times that Texas has played down to slow, poorly-coached teams and had narrow outcomes that should have been blowouts. Beating anyone by 49 points is a big accomplishment, especially when you’re playing your second and third units for the entirety of the fourth quarter, so you definitely can’t take away from what Texas did on Saturday.
Curry Shoff (@willcurrys) - It’s fully inserted. I think we will look at the Texas Tech game this season as an anomaly. Texas shouldn’t lose another game for the rest of the year.
Cody Daniel - (@CodyDanielSBN) - It was an encouraging win, to be sure, but it would be fair to say this wasn’t exactly the best team Oklahoma has fielded as of late. I’m more optimistic about Texas’ now given what they showed on that stage, but I’ll wait until after Oklahoma State to get too high on the Horns. If they’re 6-2 after that, though …
It feels like no one truly had a bad game on either side of the ball but who impressed you the most?
Cameron - Quinn Ewers. I truly believe he’s going to finish his time on campus as a top-3 Texas quarterback. Just his 3rd career start, coming off an injury, playing in his first Red River Showdown, and looked cool, calm, and collected. I mean the dude hasn’t even played all four quarters yet in a game! His 3rd down thrown to Bijan Robinson was stupid and the dart to Ja’Tavion Sanders down the seam for a TD was even stupider. Big things ahead for the mullet.
Daniel - It’s hard to go with anyone other than Quinn Ewers in this spot considering he plays the most important position on the team and he was coming off a long layoff due to injury. This was Ewers’ first ride into the Cotton Bowl, so on top of some rust, I was expecting some nerves early on from the young quarterback. Ewers put on a show and put his arm talent on full display for everyone to see on top of looking incredibly calm at all times and never getting rattled even when the game was close early. If Texas is going to be able to get this kind of production from Ewers moving forward, then they will be able to compete with anyone in the conference.
Gerald - The wide receivers, especially as it comes to blocking. Brennan Marion’s mantra of “the way you play without the ball in your hands shows how much you love your teammates” has seemingly taken root with that group and it is a differentiator. The play where Xavier Worthy created a seam with his body, while Jordan Whittington buried his defender, allowing Keilan to find the end zone really sticks out to me. But that is the differentiator between a good and a great offense, in my opinion.
Curry - Quinn threw some passes that I have watched probably two dozen times now. He’s special – and Texas at full strength with some confidence is going to be hard to stop.
Cody - Going with the obvious answer – Quinn Ewers. We’d only truly seen him for four quarters, and three of those came against ULM. So, after lighting Alabama’s defense on fire and missing the previous three games, Ewers looked his best yet, and it’s hard not to feel like Texas might have found its most talented QB since Colt McCoy.
No more Brock Purdy or Breece Hall for Iowa State, but wideout Xavier Hutchinson returns and leads the country in receptions and is 9th in receiving yards. Texas hasn’t allowed an opponent wideout to surpass 100 yards yet this season but will it finally happen this week?
Cameron - It depends on how PK plays his defense this week. If he drops his corners and gives Iowa State room, you can bet your bottom dollar the Cyclones will dink and dunk to Hutchinson all game long. I’d like to Texas play press and not allow Dekkers and Hutchinson to get into a rhythm like we saw Donovan Smith and Myles Price get into earlier in the season. Hutchinson was the last opposing wideout to get close to the 100-yard mark (96 yards) but if he couldn’t do with Mr. Irrelevant, he won’t with Mr. Dekkers.
Daniel - This is a tough call for me. The Texas corners have been pretty good so far this year and you can bet that Pete Kwiatkowski will be scheming up some ways to try to take Hutchinson away. I’ll say that Hutchinson breaks 100 yards simply because they will force feed him the ball much like we saw Texas Tech do with Myles Price a few weeks ago.
Gerald - I would be shocked if he didn’t hit 100 yards, simply because of volume, he has more receptions than the next three folks on the Iowa State stat sheet combined. I wouldn’t consider that a failure for the defense though, because if he’s putting up big numbers but is the only thing that Iowa State can do offensively, that is a recipe for success.
Curry - I think Pete K has earned the benefit of the doubt this season. I don’t expect a letdown game at home - I think Texas rolls – and that continues this week without allowing a 100-yard receiver to give the secondary fits.
Cody - I have faith that Texas’ secondary can hold him in check within reason, but I fully expect ISU to force-feed Hutchinson, so I think his stats may appear greater than his impact on the game.
Iowa State enters this week winless in conference play just like Oklahoma but unlike the Sooners, the Cyclones feature one of the top defenses in the country. ESPN SP+ ranks them 17th, with FEI ranking them 9th in the country. How concerned are you with Matt Campbell’s flyover defense that has given Sark, Herman, and Texas troubles in the past?
Cameron - Tom Herman was able to conquer the flyover defense the second time around and I feel confident in Sark’s ability to do it this Saturday mainly because I don’t think Iowa State can contain Quinn Ewers and Bijan Robinson and Xavier Worthy and Ja’Tavion Sanders for four quarters. Oklahoma showed a similar look last Saturday, playing deep and double teaming Worthy and Texas said “okay cool we’ll just let Whittington and Sanders cook.” And the Horns only scored 49 points when it easily could’ve been 63. I don’t expect 49 points but this Texas offense ain’t exactly Iowa’s.
Daniel - Mildly concerned because Sark did seem to have trouble against this style of defense, but I am optimistic because Texas’ personnel is improved this time around and their quarterback should be able to make the ISU defense pay where Hudson Card and Casey Thompson couldn’t last year. Ewers is going to make things more challenging on the Cyclones if he can continue to get time in the pocket. This will be a big test for the Texas offensive tackles, with Will McDonald being one of the best pass rushers in the league and he gave the Longhorns a lot of trouble last year.
Gerald - It’s obviously concerning because of how Sark likes to attack defenses, but I think they have shown you that Quinn Ewers is the type of QB that can make multiple throws on multiple levels and this offense can move the ball. I wouldn’t be shocked to see the TEs and slot guys trying to sit underneath those safeties and just taking what the defense gives, especially with Billingsly coming back this week.
Curry - Not concerned. They have never seen a Texas offense like this one. It’s blowin’ and goin’.
Cody - Like Daniel said, I’m only mildly concerned, but I think the Longhorns offense is much more dynamic with more weapons – and an improved QB slinging it around – than they did last season. I’d expect ISU to have some success, I just expect the Texas offense to have more.
Texas snapped their 3-game losing streak to Oklahoma last week, can they snap the one against Iowa State this week?
Cameron - Texas is 5-1 ATS this year and 3-0 when Ewers starts. Mark it down for 6-1. Texas 38, Iowa State 13
Daniel - I think losing Brock Purdy and Breece Hall will hurt the flow of the Cyclone offense in this one. It is tough to replace vets like that at a place like Iowa State. I think the Texas defense will continue to show it is up to challenge in 2022 and that Quinn Ewers will continue to ascend in the eyes of the college football world. Texas 34 Iowa State 21
Gerald - The battle of the Texas offense vs. the Iowa State defense is one that you obviously need to watch, but I think what gives me pause is that I don’t think ISU will have enough to get it done against the Texas defense. I have it as Texas 35-20.
Curry - Texas wins by 3+ touchdowns and scores 40+ points. Might even be a shutout.
Cody - The revenge tour continues. Give me Texas, 34-13.