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The second half was an abomination.
Kansas State scored touchdowns on five of its six possessions in the second half (not counting the game's last possession where K-State kneeled the ball).
Who wanted it more in the second half?
The answer was obvious. Kansas State came to win. Texas came to see if they could "hang in there".
After looking terrific for most of the first half - in part to questionable K-State play-calling - the Texas defense, as has been the case for almost the entire year, had no answer for the opposing offense once it got rolling.
Whether it was poor linebacker play, a defense out of position before the snap, or playing man coverage, the Texas had no worthwhile response in the second half.
Before I go further on this game, I want give a shout out to Collin Klein. The guy is obviously a talented, hard-nosed football player, who deserves whatever accolades go his way at the end of the season.
I don't know if he deserves the Heisman, but I think he deserves to be on any short list there is.
Case McCoy got off to perhaps the worst start you can. His first pass was tipped. His second was returned for a would-be touchdown.
McCoy then got hot for the rest of the first half and to start the third quarter. Before cooling down on consecutive possessions before throwing his second pick of the night.
Both picks were along the sidelines against zone coverage.
Peter Jinkins gave the Texas defense a spark early in the game. But eventually he got overwhelmed in the power run game in the third and fourth quarters.
Texas used Jinkins as a spy on Klein in the first half and the strategy seemed to work until K-State stuck with the power run almost exclusively.
Quandre Diggs did not have his best day in a Longhorn uniform. Not only did Diggs give up the long completion when the Wildcats were backed up to their own one yardline, but he also fumbled the punt that essentially put the game out of reach for the Horns.
Going back to the long catch by Chris Harper against Diggs, it's hard to understand why Texas was playing man coverage in that situation with no safety over the top.
Folks may question Kenny Vaccaro for sneaking into the box against the run when Adrian Phillips got beat over the top on the 55-yard touchdown throw from Klein to Tyler Lockett.
But Phillips didn't just get beat. He got beat badly. Phillips wasn't within 8 yards of Lockett when he caught the ball.
Malcolm Brown's return was nice to see.
The sophomore had a reasonably good game, especially in the pass game.
Brown broke a big run off a counter play in the first half that gave the Texas O a much-needed spark.
Case McCoy was sacked five times. It was just too many and it put Texas behind the chains too often.
McCoy, however, performed extremely well in third and long on the night.
McCoy's moxie was obvious on several feel throws but his lack of arm strength certainly was an issue on the first interception. And Texas never went deep against K-State either.
Mike Davis had a relatively quiet game. Davis had a nice catch early in the game on a play that was called back because of a leg whip by Donald Hawkins.
How bad is the Texas run defense?
The opposing team scored five touchdowns and attempted just 14 passes all game.
Texas left points on the field at the end of the first half.
After getting a big first down on a Joe Bergeron fourth-and-one power run, the Horns couldn't capitalize.
Instead, the Horns didn't manage the clock well or get a good series of plays.
After a 7-yard catch on a sideline route by Mike Davis, the Texas offense stalled. McCoy tried to go deep over the middle into double coverage. Then McCoy took the sack-by-proxy with the illegal grounding call.
The sack pushed Texas out of field goal range which lead to an excuse-me style fake field goal.
Texas got the ball to the edges more tonight than it has at other times of the year.
Daje Johnson and DJ Monroe both had big runs.
The Horns also worked the double reverses with some success.
A couple of plays in the third quarter exemplify the problems Texas has on defense.
Texas has K-State to a 3rd and 6 from the Texas 10. The score is 17-14 in favor of Texas.
If Texas holds K-State to a field goal here, it's all tied up and the Horns get the ball back.
Instead, K-State rushes for a first down on third and six. The very next play they score a touchdown.
After a quick Texas three and out and a decent punt return by the Wildcats, Collin Klein hits Tyler Lockett for the touchdown.
Stopping that third-and-six run ended up amounting to an 11-point swing and gave KSU all the momentum.
Not sure why Texas didn't at least give Jaxon Shipley a try in the punt return game at some point this season.
Dominic Espinosa was beaten badly in the run game early in the game. Both Espinosa, Walters and Cochran had problems all night in pass protection, but Espinosa moreso than the others.
Now for the million-dollar question.
Was this loss bad enough to get key boosters (McCombs, Jamail, etc.) behind a movement to ask Mack to retire?
I don't know. This loss had a middle of the road feeling to it.
But here's a fact.
Texas hasn't lost four conference games in three consecutive years since the 1930s.
Say what you want, but the Horns could be just one game better than a season ago. And that's if they win the bowl game.
Depending on what bowl the Horns are picked for tomorrow, winning that game will be a very big IF.
Then there's also the consideration that the quarterback job is now undecided. Not sure how that portends well for next season.
I'll have more thoughts on the game tomorrow morning.
I'm going to sleep with the chant "We Own Texas" ringing in my ears.
This post was edited by BobbyBurton 16 months ago
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While the criticism of the defense is justified, 3 Texas turnovers led to 3 easy KSU scores for 21 points, providing more than the margin of victory.
I at least saw some fire in the bellies of these players that wasn't evident against TCU.
A coaching change won't fix the QB problem.
The OL still doesn't pass protect very well. Improvement in both lines is key to this team improving.
Good summation of events. Thanks
Sorry, but I hate that "horns could be one game better than last yr" comment. It completely ignores that Texas finished with the #5 SOS last year and came into KSU with the 41st. This team loses to the 2011 team.
This post was edited by Codaxx 16 months ago
1. 14 of those points, I agree. The last fumble was a 40 yard field or so IIRC.
2. I agree about the fire. But I felt like it burned only in the first half when K-State tried to pass its way down the field instead of running it.
3. Agree. The QB problem isn't getting fixed without a new QB. Texas has a huge issue and I don't see any help on the way. Tyrone Swoopes isn't it.
4. The OL, especially the right side, are not very good pass protectors.
Take away those 3 TD's and UT loses 21-17 because the last TD was a garbage end of the game TD.
See how that what if stuff works?
Since 9/4/10 Mack has 11 conference wins.
That is $1,360,000 per conference win.
Please stop thinking a new DC solves the problems with the current UT program.
I've really given up on trying to explain this team under Mack Brown. For two weeks in a row this team had so much to play for and we continue to struggle to get fired up to play for what is out there. Last week it was the offense mostly (yes the defense had its moments in the first half) and then tonight it was the defense deciding to take a half off. You combine that with stupid turnovers (guys dropping balls, stupid penalties and poorly thrown passes) and this team looks an awful lot like last years team overall. Yes, the offense improved, but now were dealing with a defense that replaced the offense from a year ago. Texas needs a change. It's that simple and if we don't get it, we might as well prepare for more of the same next year.
This post was edited by txhookem78 16 months ago
I think if you step back and look at the strengths and weaknesses you would agree. The 2012 offense starts and ends which the run. 2011 was excellent vs the run. I do not see the offense scoring much. 2011 offense was brutal, but could take advantage of bad run defenses. What's the weakness of the 2012 defense? Stopping the run. Offense has made strides, but the defenses regression has outpaced those gains.
Time for a HC change. I don't see what is needed to push the program back to Prominence. Too many Conference losses. And no need in beating a Dead Horse on the rest of the problems. Thank you Coach Brown for what you have done. But it is time.
I found it interesting not one criticism about tackling.
"Don't know. Never had one"
-- D. Royal-Mack Brown how to coach a team after a losing season
Out of curiousity, what ever happened to the "wildcat" formation. It seemed to work really good early in the season and then disappeared.
Some days you get the bear, some days the bear gets you.
It seems to be the one thing that's received attention this week. But why did everything else get dropped from practice?
Hook 'Em! ...'til early in the morn.
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