Creating and securing turnovers have become a significant area of concern for the Texas Longhorns this season and considering the ‘Horns track record over the past decade in turnover battles, it’s an area that needs to become a priority for Charlie Strong and his staff going forward.
Since 2007, the Longhorns are 2-24 (.077) when being on the wrong side of a two-turnover (-2) deficit. Texas is 76-17 (.817) in all other games.
The stat proved reliable again Saturday night in Texas’ 50-43 loss to California after owning a -2 turnover margin. Texas had multiple opportunities to change its fortunes by forcing three fumbles throughout the night, including one on the kickoff of what would become Cal’s go-ahead drive down the stretch, but didn’t recover a single fumble.
Texas also finished the Notre Dame game with a -1 turnover margin and broke even against UTEP after a fumble recovery; the ‘Horns only turnover of the season. As a result, Texas ranks 98th nationally with a -3 turnover margin, which is certainly a troubling figure considering the team that wins the turnover battle wins the game 73 percent of the time, per Football Study Hall.
Texas finally has an offense capable of scoring with the best of them, but if the defense can’t figure out ways to create turnovers and a few extra opportunities for Sterlin Gilbert’s group in conference play, we may see the ‘Horns on the losing end of some shootouts similar to Cal.