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Even in a loss, Texas shows it's an 'elite ball club'

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Which 1-Loss Teams Still Have Viable College Football Playoff Aspirations?



3. Texas Longhorns

The final one-loss team with a conceivable path to the top four is Texasalthough the FPI puts the Longhorns' chances of winning out at 0.7 percent. Such is life in the Big 12, where the only team with multiple losses is 2-2 Kansas.


Texas QB Sam Ehlinger (11) and head coach Tom Herman
Texas QB Sam Ehlinger (11) and head coach Tom HermanEric Gay/Associated Press

Though the odds are stacked against the Longhorns, it doesn't seem that unlikely for this high-powered offense to win its next nine games (including the Big 12 championship). They have scored at least 36 points in every gameincluding the 45-38 loss to current AP No. 4 LSUand Oklahoma is the only team left on the schedule that is likely to keep pace with that type of scoring assault.

They get the Sooners on a "neutral" site in Texas for a rivalry that always seems to come right down to the wire. And the Longhorns will get the only other currently ranked Big 12 team (No. 24 Kansas State) at home. Road games against TCU, Iowa State and Baylor could go sideways for Texas, but those teams lost to SMU, almost lost to Northern Iowa and barely showed up against Rice, respectively. It's hard to trust any of them in any location.

The problem, of course, is that Texas would presumably need to beat Oklahoma twice in order to finish at 12-1, and that Jalen Hurts-led bunch is in the top four nationally in points per game (55.7) for the fifth consecutive season.

Sam Ehlinger threw for more than 300 yards and had two touchdowns in each contest against the Sooners last year and rushed for a total of 114 yards and five touchdowns. Yet the Longhorns needed a last-second field goal to win the regular-season game and lost by two possessions in the Big 12 championship. He'll need to bring his A-game and then some.

If they were to get it done, though, it would be more impressive than anything that Notre Dame or Oregon could achieve the rest of the way. A one-loss Alabama, Auburn, Georgia or LSU would probably be ranked ahead of a one-loss Texas, but it would be almost impossible to deny the Longhorns a spot in the playoff with a sweep of the Sooners.



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Matthew McConaughey reportedly makes $12,000 per class as a professor at the University of Texas

By Johanna Gretschel 



He’s not making Tom Herman money (at least not from the University of Texas), but Academy Award-winning actor Matthew McConaughey isn’t offering his services pro bono, either.

The Longhorns’ Minister of Culture (an honorary, reportedly unpaid position) makes $12,000 for every course he teaches independently at the University of Texas and $6,000 for every course he co-teaches, according to an offer letter obtained by mySA.com.

The 1993 UT alum served as a visiting instructor since 2015 and was appointed as a professor of practice to the Moody College of Communication’s Department of Radio-Television-Film (RTF) faculty beginning this fall. McConaughey has co-taught Advanced Producing: Script to Screen with UT professor Scott Rice since 2015; during this fall’s course, students will study “The Gentlemen” and “Mud.” “Mud” director Jeff Nichols is scheduled to visit. 

It’s unclear how many classes McConaughey will teach or co-teach during the 2019-2020 school year.

The 49-year-old actor is incredibly involved in Austin and with the University of Texas. Earlier this summer, he announced his investment in Austin FC as a co-owner and he appeared on ESPN’s College GameDay program ahead of the Texas vs. LSU football game in September.

McConaughey has appeared in over 50 films and won the 2014 Academy Award for Best Actor for his portrayal of Rob Woodroof, a cowboy diagnosed with AIDS, in “Dallas Buyers Club.”


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USF’s Charlie Strong to lock horns with his former Texas QB, Shane Buechele

Buechele started all 12 games for Texas in 2016, Strong’s final season as Longhorns coach.
SMU quarterback Shane Buechele (7) throws against TCU during the first half of Saturday's game in Fort Worth, Texas. SMU won, 41-38. [RON JENKINS | AP]
Published Sep. 23

TAMPA ― The volatility of the college football landscape, replete with portals and pink slips, lends itself to bizarre scenarios such as the one that unfolds Saturday at Raymond James Stadium.

When SMU’s surprisingly balanced Air Raid offense gets in formation, Charlie Strong will observe a quarterback he has spent more games coaching than his very own.

Mustangs graduate transfer Shane Buechele started all 12 contests for Strong in his final season at Texas in 2016.

MORE BULLS: USF soccer star Evelyne Viens conquers language barrier, scoring records

“Charlie’s obviously gonna know what his strengths are, know what his weaknesses are,” SMU coach Sonny Dykes said Monday. “He’s gonna have a real good feel for that.”

Will it matter Saturday? Probably not. Three years is a lifetime in college football. Buechele’s opening-night assignment as an 18-year-old against Notre Dame in 2016? That was two coaches and one transfer ago.

He’s 21 now, a veteran of ebbs and flows. He’s mastering a new system in a new setting. Moxie has supplanted precociousness.

Which doesn’t preclude Strong and Buechele from sharing a bearhug before or after Saturday’s game.

“Obviously Charlie recruited Shane and spent a lot of time with him,” Dykes said. “I know Shane’s got a lot of respect for Charlie, really likes him and thinks the world of him.”

A four-star in-state prospect from Arlington’s Lamar High, Buechele ― youngest in an athletic family of five kids ― enrolled at UT in January 2016. He quickly asserted himself as the team’s best ping-pong player, and set the fan base afire in the Longhorns spring game (299 yards, two touchdowns).

He earned the starting nod over senior Tyrone Swoopes against the 10th-ranked Irish on Labor Day weekend, becoming the first true freshman to start at quarterback for the Longhorns since Bobby Layne in 1944.

While Swoopes had a pair of critical scoring runs in overtime, Buechele finished 16-for-26 for 280 yards, two TDs and an interception in a wild 50-47 UT triumph.

“His skill (made) a good combination because he was a very smart young man and a really good competitor,” Strong said.

“Comes from a really good family; his dad (Steve) at one time was with the Texas Rangers and then his brother (Garrett) played professional baseball. Just a very smart young man and had really good leadership ability.”

Less than three months later, Strong was out. Though Buechele passed for a UT freshman-record 2,958 yards, the Longhorns were unable to capitalize on the momentum of the Notre Dame win and finished 5-7.

He shared the starting job with Sam Ehlinger in an injury-besieged sophomore season, and departed after appearing in only two games in ’18.

MORE BULLS: Jordan McCloud’s debut among best by a USF QB

Under Dykes, he and the Mustangs (4-0) have found new life.

Buechele, who graduated from UT last spring, ranks second in the American Athletic Conference in passing (289.8 ypg) and total offense (305.5 ypg), and third in pass efficiency (151.9).

In Saturday’s 41-38 road upset of No. 25 TCU, he threw for 288 yards and two TDs and ran for another as the Mustangs finished 6-for-7 in the red zone.

“When I had him in ’16, he was a true freshman,” Strong said. “So now to watch him develop, his game has really elevated because now he’s learned the game. ... When you’ve been in a program, and now the older you get, the wiser you become, and I think that’s where he is.”


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