clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Turkey Day Roundtable: Bijan, Senior Day, and the Baylor Bears

Enjoy a second helping while reading this week’s Roundtable!

Texas v Kansas Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images

Who impressed you the most in Texas’s 55-14 route over the Kansas Jayhawks: Steve Sarkisian or Pete Kwiatkowski?

Cameron Parker (@camerondparker) - PK deserves his flowers for the defensive performance this season. Even when they play good, fans give credit to Gary Patterson but today I’m going with Sark. Cold weather, high winds, weird atmosphere, and Sark understood the assignment. Give the ball to your best player. It seems simple but I see a lot of coaches ignore that on Saturday and Sunday and we saw Sark do that last week. This time around he attacked KU’s run defense and didn’t put his freshman QB in a position where he had to win the game for Texas.

Daniel Seahorn (@DanielSeahorn) - I’m going with PK given that KU’s offense is dangerous and has the ability to put up crooked numbers on the scoreboard. On top of that Jalon Daniels returned to the lineup and they were able to keep his numbers fairly modest and also force a turnover on him. The 14 points didn’t come until the second half and the game was well within hand at that point with reserves in the game.

Gerald Goodridge (@ghgoodridge) - Of the two, it’s got to be PK. A week after playing championship-level football against TCU, we all were curious to see if they could do it again. To roll out and pitch a shutout and hold a triple-option team to 75 rushing yards through three quarters is absolutely incredible.

Cody Daniel (@CodyDanielSBN) - PK. The offense shouldn’t ever really have issues running the ball with Bijan, and that’s basically the only success they had. But PK’s defense once again played at an elite level, proving to be consistent on that side of the ball.

Friday’s game may be the last in a Longhorn for up to 30 players, depending on if they play the bowl game or decide to return in 2022-23. This could include Keondre Coburn, Moro Ojomo, T’Vondre Sweat, Christian Jones, Junior Angilau, Ovie Oghofu, Anthony Cook, D’Shawn Jamison, Roschon Johnson, DeMarvion Overshown, Bijan Robinson, and others. Outside of Bijan, who will you miss watching the most next season? Who will Texas miss the most?

Cameron - For me, it’s Roschon Johnson. This dude has been grinding since the first day he got to campus and did everything both coaching staff asked of him. Remember, he was recruited as a QB and switched to RB after the entire unit was banged up in 2019. Then he preceded to run dudes over, again and again. I’m just as sad to see him leave the 40 acres as I am Bijan but both have bright futures ahead.

Daniel - Roschon Johnson without question. That dude is the heart and soul of this football team, and while Bijan may be the more talented back it’s Roschon who sets the tone for the program. He’s been unselfish from day one and he is an easy guy to point to for development proof for the program. How many quarterbacks will convert to running back like he did and attack it to the point that they now have a chance to get drafted in the middle rounds? Johnson is heading to Sundays and it wouldn’t shock me if he’s a day-two guy in the draft.

Gerald - Asking me to pick between Roschon Johnson and DeMarvion Overshown is like asking me to pick between my kids. It’s still wild to me that a newly-recruited freshman quarterback walked into the coaches offices and offered to switch positions for the good of the team. Four years later, seeing him as a fan favorite on his way to ending up on an NFL roster is incredible, especially given the fact that he probably wouldn’t have seen the field at quarterback. The same can be said of DeMarvion Overshown, a former five-star safety that took the queue to bulk up to linebacker to help the team, who has turned into one of the better defensive prospects in the NFL. Two leaders, two team-first guys, two incredible careers.

Cody - Roschon Johnson, easily. As Sark has said, he’s the epitome of what it means to be a Longhorn. Not only has he been a great leader for the Longhorns on and off the field, but he’s a damn good football player who was helpless to a fault – he could start at the majority of programs in the country. But he stayed at Texas, and the team was better for it.

Now it’s time to give Bijan his flowers. The transcendent tailback enters Friday’s game just 98 yards away from surpassing Ricky Williams and was 4th all-time in the Texas Longhorns record book for rushing yards. What will be your favorite Bijan memory during his time on the 40 acres?

Cameron - This is tough. His run against Oklahoma in ‘21 when he put Billy Bowman into the grave at the Cotton Bowl will be used in hype videos for the rest of time. Recency bias is kicking in but his run before halftime against the Jayhawks was run of the best I’ve ever seen.

Daniel - He’s had some crazy runs, but it’s hard to not highlight the run against OU when he stiff-armed Billy Bowman so hard he did a somersault. I am also fond of the rub last year against West Virginia when he was whistled out of bounds even though it looked like he stayed in.

Gerald - Everybody else is going with a specific run, but emblematic Bijan is him putting the team on his back against TCU in 2021. Steve Sarkisian fed the kid the ball and he literally carried Texas to the win in that game. There was one highlight reel run in that game, but really what makes Bijan great, at least in my book, is that he so often makes stuff look easy.

Cody - I’m following y’all’s lead and going with the OU run in ‘21. There was so much evidence of how special of a player Robinson is all wrapped up into a single play. Runs can often be forgettable, but this one might never be.

For those who have not been following the Baylor Bears, it’s been a disappointing year for Dave Arranda following their Big 12 Championship last year. What’s been up in Waco and does a 6-5 record really describe how good/bad the Bears have been?

Cameron - Outside of their 31-3 loss to Kansas State, Baylor has been in every game this season and is arguably better than their record shows. Blake Shapen has been up-and-down this season (14 TD’s/9 INT) but their strong rushing attack remains (201 ypg). It’s been the defense that has let Aranda down this season, where they are 86th in points allowed per drive and 56th in total defense. They were also the better team on Saturday against TCU but late-game heroics from Max Duggan were enough to come back and beat Baylor.

Daniel - I’m not going to let the record fool me into a lull. I really only got to watch them against West Virginia where they lost their starting quarterback for a portion of the ball game and were forced to play the backup. They are still well-coached and scrappy, so if Texas doesn’t show up ready to play they can easily find themselves in a bind.

Gerald - Dave Aranda is one of the sharpest defensive minds in the conference, so I have been anxious all week. A year ago, Baylor was one of the most experienced teams in the conference and ended up with four of their defensive starters, three in the secondary, drafted. That probably has a lot to do with the narrow losses, but this is still a dangerous team.

Cody - I think they feel a lot like Texas probably does. Besides getting smacked by KSU, they’ve been right there in every game and their season could easily look a lot different. But unlike last year, the defense hasn’t been the dominant group you could expect from a Dave Aranda team, and as Cameron noted, QB inconsistency can kill a season – just see Texas.

Who wins on Friday?

Cameron - I think Texas keeps the Baylor rushing game in check and find enough points on offense to win a gritty contest. Texas 27, Baylor 20

Daniel - I'm expecting much more resistance against the run this week, so it will be a bit of a knife fight. With that said, I think Texas can get the win and finish the regular season on a high note. Texas 31 Baylor 21

Gerald - The weather on Saturday looks to be crappy yet again, and when the weather is bad I will always pick the team with the better running back. Texas 28-Baylor 21

Cody - Baylor might be a little dejected after back-to-back losses to remove themselves from conference contention, and I’d expect Texas to play like they have a lot to lose because they do. Texas 27, Baylor 17.