September 9, 2007

What We Learned...Week 2

What a spectacular weekend of college football! Texas just about gave us heart attacks in the first half, but played perhaps the best second half they've shown since the 2004 game against Okie State, when Vince led a comeback to win 56-35 after trailing 35-14 at the half. The lessons!

  • For the first two weeks, LSU and Oklahoma have been head and shoulders above everybody else. We are happy about the former and decidedly unhappy about the latter. We are currently conducting research as to how it is possible that the Sooners can play this good and yet the fact remains that ou sucks. We are using our college experience from 2002-2004 as a basis for our research. The Horns and Sooners look good, Aggy looks bad...all seems right in the Big XII.
  • LSU could be the best team in America. Virginia Tech has a really good defense and the Tigers hung 597 yards on them. And that LSU "D" looks pretty scary as well. Whether that offense remains successful in the SEC will make or break the Tigers' season.
  • There's something wrong with the water in the Midwest. For all our Southern homerism, we recognize that it's unusual for the entire Big Ten plus Notre Dame to be so thoroughly unimpressive (with the possible exception of Penn State; the jury is still out). Ohio State was not great against Akron. Wisconsin struggled with UNLV. And with Michigan and Notre Dame both entering next week's contest 0-2, with 4 bad losses between them, we can only scratch our heads and wonder, "how?" Not so much for ND, whom we expected to be no good. But Michigan? This is weird.
  • The Washington Huskies have been lights out through two weeks, ending Boise State's 14 game win streak in impressive fashion. If the Huskies can take two of three from Ohio St, UCLA and USC (their next three games), it would be a huge step for Ty Willingham's program.

Our Texas Lessons:

  • Huge props to the coaching staff for making adjustments at halftime. TCU was up 10-0 at the half but really wasn't outplaying Texas. The offense got in a rhythm, getting Colt out of the pocket being especially effective, the defense continued to dominate, and the better team won.
  • The offense benefits from involving Chris Ogbannaya and Vondrell McGee. Both backup RBs provide a different look from that of Jamaal Charles, give JC a chance to rest and can inject some energy into the offense. In the third quarter, for example, Ogbannaya had a routine 3-yard run. But it took 7 TCU defenders to stop him, and they never did get him on the ground--they just stopped his forward progress. The way Ogbannaya celebrated this feat, you'd have thought he scored a touchdown. That clearly provided a spark to the offense. McGee may not get a ton of carries this season, but he can make a big contribution as a goal line and short yardage rusher.
  • If the Texas team that you saw in the second half is the one that is going to show up for the rest of the season, you can officially color us Optimistic Orange. (Alliteration! Yes!) These guys could be dangerous.
  • The O-Line really seemed to jell in this ballgame. They started to give Colt more time in the pocket in the second half, and he began to show the brilliance he displayed so often last year. Some of the credit for the improvement has to go to the coaches, who clearly adjusted the blocking scheme at halftime. That's the kind of performance we will need up front from the hog-mollies all season.
  • Utica, MS correspondent Scott Price suggested that, since Mack Brown just signed a contract extension through 2017, it's possible that the next Longhorn coach could conceivably be Major Applewhite. He is already the Alabama OC, so it's within the realm of possibility that he'd get a pretty good head coaching job in the next 6-7 years and be deemed ready to take over for Mack in 2018. That would be cool.
  • One of us was at DKR this weekend, and has a few observations. For current students, this is not your slightly older sibling's DKR. Godzillatron and the new North End Zone seats could make DKR a unique and much improved football venue. What's more, the Horns regained the swagger that seemed to depart the team in Manhattan last season. Texas has a potential trap game in Orlando next week, followed by Rice and a revenge game against KSU.
  • Finally, just because it feels good to laugh again, below is a reason to laugh at Aggies, who are apparently having trouble selling out but still want to bring the noise in overtime.

1 comment:

JBRATER said...

I have attained a copy of a computer simulation of next week's Michigan - Notre Dame game.

kill me now.