Texas v. Texas-El Paso

TEXAS LONGHORNS v. TEXAS-EL PASO MINERS
Longhorn fans!

My apologies for the delay – it was a long week with work, and I am just now getting around to putting my thoughts on last week’s smack-down and this week’s preview down on paper. Thanks to those who attended last week’s game – outside of the national championship game in 2005, the crowd on Saturday was the largest of any Texas Exes Puget Sound game-watching event with more than 125 fans!

The Recap: Texas v. Florida Atlantic
Final Score: 52-10
I know, I know…I predicted a 28-17 Texas victory. Some of you are probably wondering what FAU team I was scouting, others are hoping I don’t spend money in Vegas. Either way, the score should tell you two things: 1) Texas played lights out both offensively and defensively; and, 2) FAU and coach Schnellenberger found out who the tougher team was on Saturday.

Listen up, Horns…FAU is not a bad team. In fact, they are probably one of the better opening-game teams we’ve played in recent memory. You wouldn’t guess it because Texas actually played that well. I’m not going to blow sunshine and say this team doesn’t have room to improve, because they do, but with a lot of change on the defensive side of the ball and a set of new RBs, we made this win look easy. And the Texas coaches and fans have a lot to be happy about going in to week two.

Highlights:
Total yards: 503. Awesome.

The Texas QBs.

Colt McCoy was unstoppable…he completed 24-29 passes (including his first 13, a single-game record) for 222 yards and 3 TDs to go along with 12 carries for 103 yards and a TD (team’s leading rusher). One of only two QBs (guess the other?) in Texas football history to throw for 200 yards and rush for 100 yards in a single game. Statistically, McCoy had the best QB performance in Mack Brown’s tenure.

John Chiles completed 4-5 passes and had a TD pass. I also liked seeing him in the “Q” formation, although it didn’t produce in week 1.

Offensive coordinator Greg Davis remembered the TE…and he was fantastic.

Blaine Irby was crucial as the leading receiver and check-down for McCoy, racking up seven catches for 62 yards and a TD.

Running-back-by-committee seems to work.

Balanced: Vondrell McGee, Chris Ogbonnaya and Cody Johnson scored three total TDs.

Cody Johnson is a beast at 255 lbs. – he is what Henry Melton (now a DE) should have been at RB.

The offensive line was invisible – which means they did their jobs. Well. No sacks allowed.

The Texas secondary was fantastic in the 2nd half.

Freshman…blocked punt. Special teams…fake field goal. Enough said, they’re aggressive.

Defensive coordinator Will Muschamp. Who doesn’t like his aggressive defensive philosophy? For example, pissed after a defensive mix-up in the first half, he ripped off his headset to yell at the players on the field and cut his face. There are pictures of him later coaching on the sideline and blood streaming down his face. Maybe it’s me, but that’s just awesome.

Texas D-coordinator Will Muschamp: bleeding intensity

Texas D-coordinator Will Muschamp: bleeding intensity

Lowlights:
OL Charlie Tanner injured his knee. His return to the line-up is unknown, depth will be affected.

The Texas secondary in the 1st half…was still in grade school. Improvements need to be made. Give them time, they will grow every half of every game.

Kick return game…nothing spectacular. Anyone willing to give it a shot?

Lammar Houston….stupid. One of our starting DTs, he was arrested on Sunday morning for a DWI. He will be suspended for the UTEP game and won’t travel with the team.

We’ll be OK  on the DL (Aaron Lewis will shift over), but you can guarantee coach Muschamp will bust their butts in practice this week.

Other FAU Post-Game Coverage:
AA-S: “McCoy masterful as Texas routs Florida Atlantic 52-10”
ESPN: “Gritty McCoy, Texas drub Florida Atlantic in opener”
AA-S: “Texas v. Florida Atlantic game pictures”
ESPN: “Longhorns honor former QB Young in pre-game jersey ceremony”

This Week
Eyes Of TX’s Prediction
Texas 49, UTEP 13

University of Texas – El Paso
You remember that movie “Glory Road?” It was about the unknown UTEP basketball team that won the national championship. Yes? Well, this UTEP football team is not capable of that. In other words, about the only thing Texas fans should have to worry about this game is what inappropriate establishment UTEP coach Mike Price might visit (see also: Price’s Alabama coaching debacle) by halftime, because this game should be well over by then.

To tee this game up…UTEP lost in week one. To Buffalo. You heard me right. While the home crowd will be excited for the ‘Horns to be in town, Texas should be able to take care of business early. On offense, UTEP uses two QBs: Trevor Vittatoe (the starter) is a good passer with lead feet, throwing for 3,101 yards and 25 TDs last year; back-up James Thomas comes in to run the zone-read and short yardage plays. Neither is overly dangerous, but both have the potential to be productive. The Miners’ top WR is Jeff Moturi, who had 865 yards and 13 TDs last year, but was limited to five catches for under 40 yards last week. No other WR had catches; instead their RB and TE (who is massive at 6’7” tall) were the QB’s check-down guys. The Miner’s have two RBs – Terrell Jackson and Donald Buckram – and both were relatively useless last week, due in large part to an ineffective offensive line. Expect to see the Texas DL and LBs eating up the line of scrimmage, pressuring the QB, and blowing up the short screen passes and dump passes over the middle. But, if you think their offense sounds dismal…

The Miners’ defense is horrid. They gave up 484 yards to Buffalo last week. Buffalo’s QB threw for 221 yards and 4 TDs on 10 completions. That is basically a TD every other throw…wow. UTEP runs a base 3-4 defense (three down lineman, and four linebackers), and their line is not big enough or talented enough to hold its own in the trenches. While the Miner’s LBs and secondary are decent, they can’t make up for what the DL lacks. The Texas OL should push them aside and walk up and down the field – albeit perhaps a bit differently than we saw in week one. They have a good kicker in Jose Martinez, but this game won’t be won in three point increments. Watch for some trick plays to get the crowd in to the game early, but Texas should control the trenches, the clock, and the game behind strong performances by all three Texas RBs.

Other sporting news
I leave you with my favorite part of the first week of college football: Texas A&M 14, Arkansas State 18. At College Station. Pooooorrr Aggies! Welcome, Coach Sherman, we’re looking forward to Thanksgiving.

Resources
Texas Exes Alumni Association Web site: http://www.texasexes.org/
Texas Exes Membership Department: 1-800-369-0023 (for membership card requests)
Texas Exes Puget Sound Chapter Web site: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/texas_exes_puget_sound/

Hook ‘em!

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