FINAL SCORE: Texas 27 – Longhorns 16

First half: Texas 24 – Longhorns 10

Observations:
  • 1st drive: Tyrone Swoopes made good run/pass decisions, and with the exception of an out that took too long to get to the wide side of the field, the passes were good. His athleticism was on display on the TD run that capped the drive. On defense the linebackers went upfield too quickly and were turning and chasing on most of the drive.
  • 2nd drive: The offense runs more smoothly when Heard doesn’t hesitate with the handoff decision. Heard’s throws are coming out on time, which is an improvement over practice. On defense, the second team DB’s are over-matched, but the DL looked capable against the second team OL. There was nobody in the middle of the field when Heard broke the pocket on his TD run.
  • On Cottrell’s sack of Swoopes, the entire DL collapsed the pocket and met at the QB. That looked like OL play from 2014.
  • Blake Whiteley playing with the first team and Andrew Beck fumbling early were both a surprise.
  • John Bonney had solid coverage on Daje Johnson’s first reception, but Heard put the ball where it could only be caught by Johnson. Johnson missed a block to seal the edge a few plays later and Bonney made a nice hit.
  • After Heard has a nice run, his tendency is to keep it on the next play rather than look downfield and distribute the ball. The “I’ll do it myself” trap is still a major temptation.
  • A solid punt and a made 42-yard field goal were the biggest positives of the 1st quarter.
  • Daje Johnson fumbling a punt reception is exactly what he doesn’t need to do with so many other options at punt returner. Jacorey Warrick was the returner on the next punt.
  • Alex De La Torre had a nice block to seal the edge on D’Onta Foreman’s 2nd quarter, 28-yard run. Taylor Doyle wasn’t called for holding on the next play (should have been flagged), but he’s having trouble in pass protection.
  • The design of the offense seems determined to stretch the defense horizontally. Most throws and runs are moving toward the sideline, which leaves the middle of the field wide open.
  • When the referees started calling penalties in the 2nd quarter, the offense’s rhythm was thrown off. That needs to change.
  • Nick Rose’s second field goal (made from 52 yards) was good from at least 60. He crushed it.
  • Malik Jefferson has been all over the field in the first half. He’ll show up when the coaches watch film from this game. On his forced fumble, he also had a nice punch at the ball in addition to the hit – great technique from the youngster.
  • Andrew Beck is struggling to block any of the first team DL players. He does a good job of staying in front of them and slowing them down, but is overpowered quickly by a bull rush.
  • The offenses, quarterback decision making, passing accuracy…everything bogged down as the first half progressed.
Second half: Longhorns 6 – Texas 3

Observations:
  • Naashon Hughes did a nice job of staying home on Warrick’s reverse. He also did a nice job of breaking down in the open field and giving Warrick nothing but the sideline.
  • Warrick’s propensity for a fair catch on punt return is reminiscent of Shipley in 2014.
  • With the exception of his bounced kick off the upright, Nick Rose was very good.
  • Camrhon Hughes struggled to stay in front of Shiro Davis.
  • Adrian Colbert is quietly racking up tackles. He’s been better against the run and after the catch then he has been when the ball is in the air.
  • The effort in the 2nd half has been poor enough that I’m a bit surprised Charlie Strong didn’t make them start over.
  • Swoopes, Heard, and Vinklarek have all had trouble holding on to shotgun snaps, presumably because they’re looking downfield instead of securing the ball.
  • Heard’s accuracy in the 2nd half still says he has work to do. Even when he has time to throw, he misses slightly – not like he did a month ago, though.
  • The drive charts in the 2nd half are not pretty.
  • Vinklarek, Holtz, and Greenwood threw check-downs. One of them needs to be capable of more than that or Kai Locksley’s redshirt is in danger.
  • Thanks goodness for a running clock in the second half.
Two takeaways

1. Especially given the depleted depth on defense, the offense was underwhelming. There were bright spots but the tempo was knocked out of rhythm too easily, and once it was off-beat, both quarterbacks struggled to resurrect it. Admittedly, the heavy rotation of players hurts rhythm.

2. A lot has been made of the leadership the team lost off the 2014 squad. This group needs leaders quickly because there is a lot of work to do this Summer. For those workouts to be effective, the team needs several strong-willed players to take control.

Notable Stat’s
  • The offenses combined for 49 pass attempts versus 39 rushes in the first half.
  • Heard and Swoopes combined for -35 yards rushing in the first half. The quick whistle contributed to that total.
  • 9 total points in the second half.
  • Swoopes rushed six times – Heard had 12…that’s consistent with how they practiced.
  • Ty Templin, Gaston Davis, and Dillon Boldt all show up prominently on the stat sheet. That tells you everything you need to know about the team’s depth.