The thing about talk is that it’s cheap.
Program expectations are cheap. Preseason expectations are cheap. Even recruiting rankings are cheap in the unflattering light of outcomes.
As one of the most underachieving programs in college football history compared to resources and expectations, the Texas Longhorns, mired in one of the program’s worst stretches in its history heading into this season, are well acquainted with the heightened awareness of failure.
But all of those realities took a back seat to Saturday’s 26-16 win by the No. 7 Longhorns over the Iowa State Cyclones at Jack Trice Stadium in Ames considering the comments this week by senior offensive lineman Jarrod Hufford.
“It’s definitely be gonna one heck of a farewell present. They’re going to come in here on Senior Night in the dark. I don’t think they really know what’s going to be coming for them. I think they’re gonna have to come out and figure it out,” said Hufford.
Fact check — Texas figured it out.
You thought darkness was your ally? pic.twitter.com/IHMYeOH8T2— Texas Football (@TexasFootball) November 19, 2023
“They just think their (blank) don’t stink, to put it in layman’s terms,” said Hufford.
Consider that fact check a bit more difficult.
“They’re just humans and that’s how I see them,” said Hufford. “They’re just people that have such a high ego that needs to get checked.”
Let’s allow Texas junior wide receiver Xavier Worthy to take this one.
Yea we got a ego fasho and we got culture and the talent too never be loud and wrong @JarrodHufford hope u had a good senior night though— Z A Y (@XavierWorthy) November 19, 2023
Unchecked, then, along with some more well wishes for Hufford and his teammates on Senior Night.
The 26-16 result obscured just how poorly things went for Hufford and the Iowa State offensive line. On 21 total carries by the Cyclones, Iowa State gained only nine yards, an average of 0.4 yards per carry, the lowest yards per carry for the program since losing six yards on 26 carries in a 34-14 loss to Colorado in 2010.
Even without the 20 yards lost on three sacks, the Cyclones only managed 29 yards on 18 carries (1.6 ypc) — of the three Iowa State running backs, Abu Sama had a long run of five yards, Eli Sanders had a long run of six yards, and Cartevious Norton had a long run of three yards.
Did everyone involved in the Texas program insulted by Hufford take note of the ground-game futility of the home team? Yes, yes they did.
9 rushing that’s tuff— Tvondre sweat (@TvondreSweat) November 19, 2023
9 yards rushing … that’s all. Don’t write no check you can’t cash little guy— MURPH DAWG (@ByronMurphyII) November 19, 2023
Check fact check — uncashed.
But while the Texas players were clearly aware of Hufford’s comments before the game, Sarkisian tried to play them down publicly when he spoke to the media on Thursday, so what about the official accounts of the Longhorns after the win?
Let’s just say that they crashed down on the situation like Sweat, Murphy, and the rest of the Texas defense swarming the Iowa State running game.
oNe hEck Of a fArEwElL PrEsEnT pic.twitter.com/QTkdtqdaPK— Texas Football (@TexasFootball) November 19, 2023
And what about Sarkisian himself discussing Hufford’s comments in regards to senior defensive tackle T’Vondre Sweat and junior defensive tackle Byron Murphy?
“I don’t know why you’d ever call them out,” said Sarkisian. “It’d be the last thing I would do if I was getting ready to play us, but that was their choice to call them out and to call out our culture, quite frankly. That’s how we took it.”
Senior wide receiver Jordan Whittington, who caught his first touchdown pass in 2023 to give the Horns a 13-3 lead in the third quarter, reflected on the infamous “five-star culture versus five-star players comment” by former Cyclones running back Breece Hall three years ago.
“We’ve always had the talent and now we’re five-star players with five-star coaches,” said Whittington.
Take it away, Longhorn Network.
Good night, Ames. Good night, Jarrod Hufford. Sweet dreams.