Texas has a clear starter at quarterback, the offensive line is deeper and more experienced, and for the first time in nearly seven seasons, there has been no turnover on the Texas coaching staff. On top of all of that, this may be the most experienced group of starters Texas has seen in years. Texas’ 22 starters boast 249 starts to date, with 19 upperclassmen who hold starting spots.
Newly-minted starter Sam Ehlinger looks to improve upon his performance from a year ago, in which a few ill-advised passes cost Texas in crucial moments – specifically in overtime against USC and Oklahoma State, and the fourth quarter against Texas Tech. In spite of his struggles and injury issues, Ehlinger amassed 1,915 yards through the air as a true freshman.
Ehlinger will have help offensively in his attempts to improve upon last year’s results. Texas returns its top two receivers from 2017 in Collin Johnson and Lil’Jordan Humphrey, who combined for 1,196 yards and three touchdowns.
While the Longhorns finally have some consistency, the Terrapins are dealing with uncertainty across the board, starting with the head coach.
Maryland coach D.J. Durkin remains on administrative leave following the death of offensive lineman Jordan McNair. Investigations into the situation surrounding McNair’s death are still ongoing, but it appears that the Terrapins will be without Durkin and three other members of the athletic staff for a big part of the season.
First-year offensive coordinator Matt Canada is attempting to fill those shoes, but questions still remain on offense outside of what exactly Canada’s system will look like with Terrapins personnel.
Canada has yet to announce whether Tyrrell Pigrome or Kasim Hill will be his quarterback come Saturday. The Terrapins need to figure out how to replace DJ Moore, who torched Texas a year ago, but Maryland should be able to lean on senior running back Ty Johnson, who rushed for 875 yards a season ago,; 132 of them came against the Longhorns.
In spite of being favored in the game, the Longhorns cannot afford to let the fans be the only ones who remember who came out on top a year ago.
- Optimistically, Texas should win every game in 2018.
- In spite of not having a named starter, observers think Kasim Hill will start for Maryland.
- Some Burnt Orange Nation writers are supremely confident that Texas will win Saturday.
- Tom Herman was sure to remind his team about what happened a year ago against Maryland, and why that makes the Terrapins dangerous.
- The Longhorn Republic tries, and fails, to keep its expectations in check for 2018.
- Cameron Dicker will be the starting kicker for the Longhorns on Saturday.
- Defensive end, and team captain, Breckyn Hager thinks this could be the year that Texas may finally be back.
Texas injury report
- Senior wide receiver John Burt (foot) — out
- Redshirt freshman tight end Rob Cummins (knee) — out
- Junior linebacker Jeffrey McCulloch (strained pectoral muscle) — game-time decision
- Freshman linebacker Ayodele Adeoye (knee) — out
- Freshman linebacker/safety DeMarvion Overshown (knee) — out
How to watch, listen, and stream
TV: Fox Sports 1
Time: 11 a.m. Central
Radio: Texassports.com. Broadcasts are also available on Sirius 132, XM 199, and App Ch. 953
Online Streaming: FOX Sports GO
Weather: High of 82 degrees with a 50 percent chance of thunderstorms
Odds: Texas (-13.5)