Texas Year In Review

Well, 8-4 is about where I had Texas this year. But I had 8-4 because I didn't know what to think of the defense. While most of us expected somewhere in the 8-4 range, I think most of us believe we were one quarterback hit away from a potential playoff birth, so it's disappointing given that the defense showed out this year, far above expectations.

All in all, there are a lot of positives, despite the strange things that frustrate us so much. First, that Defense. The QB pressures were far better this year and will lead to even more sacks next year, assuming we can start to get home a bit more. Texas played one of the best defensive games I've seen vs Alabama, and showed the world that we're starting to make progress. I loved our run stop and saw great improvement from the DB's. Improved defensive play all around. While they didn't meet their goal of 20 points or less in every game, they cam awfully close. Oh, and skunked our rival!

On offense, the O line really showed up given our age. Sacks were low compared to years past, and our run game had a great year. Card did a marvelous job coming in for an injured Quinn, especially since he was injured himself, and we had some of the best tight end play we've seen in a decade.

The frustrations were mostly in play calling. I felt like we had a run game with Bijan, and a slant game with JWhitt that really could have helped out a young (and struggling) Ewers. Sadly, I felt like we left a lot on the field with our run game and didn't utilize JWhitt nearly enough. Granted, I realize some of that may have been Ewers decision making on the field, but it seemed like we called too many deep pass plays on 3rd down that could have easily been a run or a slant just to move the chains. It seemed we kept trying to get the deep ball to open up when it just didn't seem to be there.

That said, we hit 8 wins and should be fairly hopeful for the future. My only concern still remains that no HC at Texas will be able to do all of the work Texas demands and call plays on the field as well. We need a CEO and I fear this will hurt Sark, or any other coach that might lead the Horns someday. We need an OC who gets Sark's philosophy and can free Sark up to lead the team.

Lastly, I wasn't excited about Quinn. He plays too lazy for me. Like he's just there for the NIL or something. I get that he was hurt and that may have played a part in so many missed passes, but I didn't see any passion. If he can get it together I think he still could be great. I just don't see the work ethic in him. I think he's gotten by on talent his whole life but now, the talent around him has improved.

For next year, I'm optimistic. The running back room will be stacked without Bijan or Rochon. I actually thought Jonathan Brooks looked more explosive than Bijan at times. (Don't hear that wrong. Bijan can do things with his shifts, starts and stops that's just video game. But Young just has that prototypical burst. Bijan gains 15 yards but ran for 30 to get there and Young just hits the hole and runs for 75. That kinda difference.) I think Ewers will transfer or lose his starting job - for the better - and the main issue we'll have is the receiver room. I expect one or both of the Brockameyer twins to be back in Burnt Orange and whoever plays quarterback, will have plenty of time to find receivers even if our receiver room is not as good as we need it to be. Neyor will be back and I can't wait for that, and if we get X to stay, whoever is slinging the rock will have some good weapons.

We'll see how the portal shakes out but I'll throw out a way to early 10-2 season or better for Texas next year. Hook 'Em!

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