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Roundtable: Can Texas snap their losing streak on the road?

Plus, who needs to step for the Longhorns down the stretch.

Iowa State v Texas Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images

In the first unveiling of the 2022 College Football Playoff rankings, the Texas Longhorns came in at No. 24. Do you agree?

Cameron Parker (@camerondparker) - If Texas is playing on a neutral field, I don’t think there are 25 better teams than them so I agree. Now on the road, that’s a different story.

Daniel Seahorn (@DanielSeahorn) - I’m indifferent about the rankings, to be honest. At this point, I’m more concerned with how they perform week to week to close out the back half of the season so we can see how much this team has truly grown. Once we get to the end of the year then we can reevaluate future rankings.

Gerald Goodridge (@ghgoodridge) - The CFP only has power over you if you let it. And until Texas is able to play well enough to warrant legitimate conversation for the National Championship Invitational, I honestly don’t pay it much mind. That being said, I think part of it was to give Alabama a ranked win so they could justify ranking them over TCU.

Cody Daniel (@CodyDanielSBN) - It doesn’t mean much to me. Texas isn’t making the playoff regardless of what happens the rest of the way, so the playoff ranking doesn’t really hold much weight.

As the Horns hit the closing stretch of the season, what do you think their win-loss record will be in the final four games? Kansas State, TCU, Kansas, and Baylor remain…

Cameron - 2-2

Daniel - I think 2-2 is the most likely outcome and it also might be the ceiling for that stretch based on what we’ve seen.

Gerald - I think 2-2 is probably likely, but getting TCU and Baylor at home is helpful. I think KState is the one that gives me the most indigestion currently because weird things happen in Manhattan.

Cody - 2-2 is probably the safe answer, but if Texas wins Saturday in Manhattan, 3-1 feels more likely.

With injuries piling up on the defensive side and the lack of a consistent playmaker on the offensive side not named Bijan, Xavier, or Ja’Tavion, who needs to step up?

Cameron - Defensively, it has to be Kitan Crawford. He’s struggled at times in the last two games with miscommunication and blown assignments but with the lack of depth in the secondary, Crawford has to find a rhythm, or else the defense will struggle and Sark will have to turn to a freshman. Offensively, has anyone seen Casey Cain? Sark wants to redshirt Agiye Hall, Omeire either isn’t 100% ready or isn’t gelling with Sark’s scheme so Cain has to find some chemistry with Ewers. Defenses are keying in on Worthy and Ewers is too.

Daniel - On offense, I’m going to say Jordan Whittington, and defensively I’ll say, Jahdae Barron. Whittington needs to become a favorite target for Quinn Ewers and with guys in the secondary banged up, Barron is going to be tasked with taking on a much bigger role.

Gerald - Offensively, the interior of the offensive line. A big part of the reason why Texas lost against Oklahoma State is that the Cowboys were super disruptive between the tackles and Texas couldn’t get the ground game going in the second half, ultimately abandoning it. Defensively, any defensive back turning into a legitimate disruptor in the passing game would be lovely.

Cody - I’ll go against the grain a bit and say Quinn Ewers. He hasn’t really played near his best the last couple of weeks, and we’ve seen glimpses of how dynamic the offense can be when he’s rolling. If Ewers is on, the offense rolls, the defense gets more time to rest, and everyone wins.

Texas has dominated Kansas State over the past few years but this year Wildcats team is one of the best since the Collin Klein years. What’s the biggest reason for the jump to Big 12 contender this season?

Cameron - Collin Klein has built an offense that makes his QBs comfortable and doesn’t have to do too much. Nebraska didn’t understand the assignment with Adrian Martinez, but Kansas State did. Defensively, they rank #7 in FEI and #7 in ESPN’s SP+ because of an experienced secondary and a run defense that allows just 3.7 yards per rush.

Daniel - KSU has established an offensive identity and turned Adrian Martinez into a more than serviceable quarterback. I was a doubter that Martinez could get the job done for the Wildcats this year, but he has been rock solid for Collin Klein this year in Manhattan.

Gerald - The answer is in the question. It’s now the Collin Klein years again, but now he’s the OC. They’ve been really explosive on the ground, with Deuce Vaughn averaging nearly six yards per carry. It’s relatively hard to keep them one-dimensional because Vaugh can crack a big one off at any moment.

Cody - They’ve typically had some stout defenses that have been the identity of quality teams, but that offense is just different this year. A well-rounded K-State squad isn’t ideal news for Texas.

Can the Longhorns end their losing streak on the road against Kansas State?

Cameron - No. Texas 31, Kansas State 37

Daniel - I haven’t got a good feeling about this one and rarely do when Texas has to head north to play this game. Until Ewers shows me a bounce-back game and this team shows me they can get it done on the road I have to fade them. Kansas State 31 Texas 24

Gerald - Frankly, I have no clue. I can’t tell if this is my natural sports pessimism or if it’s a legit bad feeling. It’s also going to be windy in Kansas tomorrow, so I guess we’ll see what the offense can do. Kansas State 34-Texas 31

Cody - I wouldn’t be surprised if Texas wins, but I don’t expect it. 31-27 K-State.