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Jameson McCausland

Initial Thoughts: Texas to play Georgia in Sugar Bowl

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Despite a 9-4 record, Texas will represent the Big 12 in the Sugar Bowl on New Year’s Day. Oklahoma was announced as the 4th seed in the College Football Playoff earlier today, leaving the Big 12 runner-up as the conference representative in a New Year’s 6 bowl. The Longhorns will face off against SEC runner-up Georgia, who finished 5th in the final College Football Playoff rankings. The Bulldogs are 11-2, with losses to LSU in the regular season and Alabama in yesterday’s SEC Championship game. Here are a few quick initial thoughts on the matchup:

  • Texas is matched up against one of the best 4 teams in the country. Georgia had Alabama, the best team in the country, on the ropes yesterday and should have walked out of Atlanta with a victory. Kirby Smart learned under Nick Saban for a long time, so it is no surprise the Bulldogs possess many of the similar traits that help make Alabama so dominate.
  • Georgia is built to dominate the line of scrimmage. The Bulldogs offensive line is just as good, if not better, than Oklahoma’s. They have paved the way for D’Andre Swift and Elijah Holyfield, who have combined for 1,858 rushing yards.
  • Unlike most teams Texas has faced this year, Georgia won’t be looking to spread the field every play and have 2 minute scoring drives. The Bulldogs are balanced and wear down opposing teams with their physicality. For the Texas defense, this type of offense will likely be a welcome sight. Linebackers like Anthony Wheeler tend to be more productive because they aren’t being asked to play sideline to sideline against guys who run a 4.3 or 4.4. Similarly, a defensive tackle like Chris Nelson will be able to do what he is best at, anchoring the middle and eating up blockers.
  • Defensively, the Bulldogs are stout against the run. If Texas was unable to move bodies in the running game against the Sooners, I wouldn’t expect the Tre Watson and Keaontay Ingram to run wild on New Year’s Day. It’s hard to see Texas having much success with pounding the ball between the tackles. They will likely need to involve the Sam Ehlinger (who will be coming off a full month of resting his ailing shoulder) in the QB run game and try to open up lanes inside by having success in the passing game.
  • The last time Georgia faced a Big 12 team was Oklahoma in the Rose Bowl a season ago, and the Sooners offense moved the ball at will. While the Texas offense is not up to the caliber of Oklahoma’s, the Longhorns do have playmakers on the outside to give Georgia some problems.
  • On paper, Georgia is more talented than Texas. It’s really not even close. The Bulldogs will likely open as at least a 10 point favorite in Vegas and it wouldn’t surprise me to see that number be higher. Tom Herman has an excellent track record as an underdog and the Longhorns have proven they play to the level of competition this year. This game will serve as a good measuring stick for the Longhorns and where they are as a program.

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I am looking forward to it...I know you have to be careful what you wish for, but I am not completely convinced of the secsecsec hype. I dont buy that Bama is the best until they have won it all. I agree the georgia has great Oline and D line but I dont know how much speed they have and if they can handle LJH and CJ.

If we play much smarter(this is fixable) than we did against OU, we can win this. I expect Georgia to come out flat and slow starting, as they did not want to be there....stuck with playing a 4 loss team. Maybe Smart can get his guys motivated, but it is an uphill battle. We might, just might be able to jump out to a fair sized lead. As Mike Tyson sid....everyone has a good plan until they get punched in the mouth.

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I think at this point in the program reboot, this is a good measuring stick. We will find out how close the program is to where it should be. 

You gotta embrace the challenge. I’m sure the team is more excited about playing Georgia than they would be to play in the Alamo Bowl.

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This could be a disaster for Texas if it gets out of hand. In the grand scheme of things (recruiting wise) a good four quarter game against an elite team is going to do wonders. A 30 point loss wont look good.

Orlando and Herman have one month to get ready for a war, and I like their chances to come up with things Fromm hasnt seen before. I realize the chances of this are slim, but I sure would be getting Rising reps and getting him ready to go in case Sam goes down. He has legs Shane dont and Shane is not going to beat Georgia.
 

We will see where we are as a program on January 1st. To be here in year 2 after the last few years is a great thing. We have almost nothing to lose and everything to gain. Go get it boys. 

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This is EXACTLY what we want, a chance to see just where we are against of the elite programs. This is like us against Michigan when VY was a sophomore. That bowl win was the springboard to the next season and the natty. If we can win this bowl game, imagine the boost that gives us going into Signing Day, the spring ... the implications of this game are huge. OK, cool. Hook 'em.

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20 minutes ago, Lord Vader said:

This could be a disaster for Texas if it gets out of hand. In the grand scheme of things (recruiting wise) a good four quarter game against an elite team is going to do wonders. A 30 point loss wont look good.

Orlando and Herman have one month to get ready for a war, and I like their chances to come up with things Fromm hasnt seen before. I realize the chances of this are slim, but I sure would be getting Rising reps and getting him ready to go in case Sam goes down. He has legs Shane dont and Shane is not going to beat Georgia.
 

We will see where we are as a program on January 1st. To be here in year 2 after the last few years is a great thing. We have almost nothing to lose and everything to gain. Go get it boys. 

I don't understand your logic. If Sam goes down then you don't want to put in an experienced backup that has won games for UT. You want to put in instead a freshman that has never played before against one of the best teams in the nation.:unsure:

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  • Bowl games have become difficult for me to measure any team by as so many players often times opt out to prepare for the draft and a few have been known to play cautiously so as to avoid any kind of injury.  Then you add in the Coaches who will often times use it to play  all new starters and bowl game events that become a distraction.  With that said Orlando better have a defense that can stop the run are it will be a miserable game.

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Our best hope is for Georgia to be very disappointed that they're not playing in the playoffs. While the Horns are highly motivated to play in a New Year's  Day Bowl or any bowl for that matter and the Bulldogs are not.

That and the fact that Herman has a good record as an underdog. 

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2 hours ago, primal defense said:

I don't understand your logic. If Sam goes down then you don't want to put in an experienced backup that has won games for UT. You want to put in instead a freshman that has never played before against one of the best teams in the nation.:unsure:

That sounds an awful lot like Garrett Gilbert playing vs bama without any meaningful snaps that season.  

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1 hour ago, primal defense said:

Our best hope is for Georgia to be very disappointed that they're not playing in the playoffs. While the Horns are highly motivated to play in a New Year's  Day Bowl or any bowl for that matter and the Bulldogs are not.

That and the fact that Herman has a good record as an underdog. 

Or they come out with a chip on their shoulder because of the Playoff snub and are out to prove themselves.

 

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Georgia gave me the worst sports pain of my life.... Cotton Bowl in 1984 (1983 season).  Never have I seen a team win a game as outclassed as Georgia was that day.  I believe they crossed the 50 yardline twice all game (or something ridiculous like that).    It turned out that this cost us a national championship.  

Revenge is a dish best served cold.  

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3 hours ago, primal defense said:

I don't understand your logic. If Sam goes down then you don't want to put in an experienced backup that has won games for UT. You want to put in instead a freshman that has never played before against one of the best teams in the nation.:unsure:

We all know Shane is not capeable of beating Georgia. Having at least a package ready for someone with wheels is not a bad idea. 

 

Make no mistake for Texas to win the QB spot has to be a man who has running ability.

 

I don't "want" it to come to that but if you think Shane, especially seeing his body of work this year in relief, can beat an elite team like Georgia you're mistaken.

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Our chances of winning the game are slim, but I still like the matchup.  Play well against the #5 team in the country in a NY6 bowl, even in a loss, and progress is clear.  Win the game and the season is a smashing success.  Much better than WVU's outlook in the Camping World Bowl, where a win over Syracuse accomplishes very little and a loss (not unlikely given the disappointment) is a disaster.

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2 hours ago, Lord Vader said:

We all know Shane is not capeable of beating Georgia. Having at least a package ready for someone with wheels is not a bad idea. 

 

Make no mistake for Texas to win the QB spot has to be a man who has running ability.

 

I don't "want" it to come to that but if you think Shane, especially seeing his body of work this year in relief, can beat an elite team like Georgia you're mistaken.

 

I agree with PD here. You don't throw Rising out there for the first time against Georgia. If anything, you use Rising if Buechele stinks the place up in relief.

This spring, however, I start giving both Rising and Thompson more snaps. I think they'd both overtake Buechele by start of next season. 

Years ago I was some sort of star in the making. I was brought up to varsity as a sophomore QB. I rode pine behind the starter until about game 5 when we took on state champion Paris. Starter went down in the 1st qtr. So I was pummeled for three quarters on a very hard field and ate some sod.

I still have nightmares about that night. lol

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