Saturday, October 24, 2015
Rain Soaked Longhorns Grind out GUTTY Win!!!
"Yet the righteous will hold to his way,
And he who has clean hands will be stronger and stronger."
Darryl K. Royal Memorial Stadium -- In front of the sparse crowd (> 30,000) that braved the remnants of Hurricane Patricia, the Texas Longhorns delivered their guttiest performance of the the Charlie Strong era. In a game where the weather dictated a trench-warfare style of play, the running game and defense came through. While there were still sloppy mistakes, they were fewer and further between, and the result was a rain-soaked 23-9 victory over Kansas State on the day they honored Bevo XIV.
A STRONG (pun intended) running game propelled the Horns to a 16-0 first half lead en route to the final victory. Jonathan Gray led the way with 18 carries for 103 yards. D'Onta Foreman, Jerrod Heard, Daje Johnson, and Tyrone Swoopes also contributed essential yardage on the ground. It's worth noting that Junior OT Kent Perkins was back from injury.
This game was especially sweet for Swoopes, who scored all three Longhorn touchdowns. Swoopes seems to be coming into his own though the short yardage #Swoopesdozer package. We still think he'd make the best Tight End on the team.
Credit is also due to the Defense, which had it's best performance, by far, of the season. While they bent at times, they only broke for one touchdown (and, even then, held to stop the two point conversion). Malik Jefferson, once again, was everywhere. Jefferson, Junior DT Paul Boyette, Redshirt Freshman CB John Bonney, Senior LB Peter Jinkins, Junior DE Bryce Cottrell, and Redshirt Freshman DE Derrick Roberson all contributed crucial sacks. Junior S Dylan Haines blew several coverages early, but more than made up for it with a 4th quarter interception.
While the Longhorns only took three penalties, they were for A DISTRESSINGLY HIGH 35 yards. They botched TWO snaps on special teams (one extra point and one punt). That being said, they also had ZERO turnovers.
Like we said above, this is the most complete victory we've seen during the Charlie Strong era.
Bottom Line: For the first time in YEARS, we feel genuinely optimistic about this team. Charlie Strong has developed a strong core of offensive skill players, with a defense capable of spectacular plays while it remains inconsistent on routine ones. Add a couple of Offensive Lineman, a couple run-stopping Defensive Tackles, a Cornerback, and a Quandre Diggs type Safety and this team will be back to NASTY faster than anyone realizes.