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Texas falls short of comeback in Ames, loses 23-21 to Iowa State

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AMES, Iowa — Iowa State head coach Matt Campbell was winless against the Longhorns headed into Saturday’s contest. In fact, the Longhorns were the only team in the Big 12 Campbell hasn’t beaten during his tenure as head coach of the Cyclones. Campbell’s bad fortune against Texas ended on Saturday evening, as did Texas’ hopes of a Big 12 Championship Game appearance, with the Cyclones defeating the Longhorns 23-21 at Jack Trice Stadium.

The Cyclones (6-4, 4-3) dominated the Longhorns (6-4, 4-3) for most of the game, but Texas made a charge in the fourth quarter, erasing a 13 point deficit and taking a one-point lead. Penalties by the Longhorns on Iowa State’s final drive, including a costly one by linebacker Joseph Ossai, allowed the Cyclones to extend the drive when the game clock was a factor and timeouts were sparse. The win made the Cyclones bowl eligible and left the Texas coaching staff scratching their heads, still in search of an identity ten games into the season.

Texas entered the game with the 4th best 3rd down conversion rate in the country.  They finished the day 6-17 on third down, well-below their average. The coaching staff knew that in order to beat the Cyclones, they had to outrush and outgain the Cyclones on offense. Neither happened, with Texas totaling 327 total yards to Iowa State’s 466.  Sam Ehlinger threw for 273 yards and three touchdowns and Cyclone quarterback Brock Purdy threw for 354 yards, two touchdowns and an interception.

The lack of rushing production hurt the Longhorns in their upset bid over ISU. Ehlinger led the team in rushing with 27 yards, but the team as a whole gained just 54 yards on the ground on 26 attempts (2.1 average).

Texas played its brand of offensive football for a total of around seven minutes in this contest.

The win by Iowa State ends a three-game winning streak by Texas and makes the Cyclones bowl eligible for the third straight year under Matt Campbell.

GAME RECAP

After a quick three and out for the Longhorns on the game’s opening drive, Brock Purdy and the Cyclones wasted no time on offense. Running back Breece Hall rushed for 40 yards on four carries to set up a two-yard touchdown pass from Purdy to tight end Charlie Kolar, who was wide open in the end zone. Iowa State held a 7-0 lead less than five minutes into the game.

At the 12:02 mark in the second quarter, D’Shawn Jamison intercepted Purdy at the Iowa State 36 yard line. Texas drove to the Cyclone 22 yard line before facing a 4th & 1. Ehlinger kept the ball on the snap and was wrapped up for no gain by ISU defensive back Greg Eisworth.

The Cyclones added a 35-yard field goal from Connor Assalley with :47 left on the clock to increase their lead to 10-0.

Sam Ehlinger engineered a 5-play, 75 yard scoring drive that took just :30 to give Texas their fist points of the game.  The drive included pairs of passes to Devin Duvernay and Brennan Eagles. Eagles’ 14 yard acrobatic reception as he tapped a toe in the end zone before going out of bounds capped the drive.

The Longhorns had just 59 yards of total offense prior to their final drive in the second quarter. They finished the first half with 134 total yards.

The Cyclones took the wind out of the Longhorns sails to open the 3rd quarter, using just one play to regain a 10-point lead.  On the first play from scrimmage, Purdy eluded several Texas defenders and then took advantage of blown coverage to connect with Deshaunte Jones for a 75-yard touchdown. There wasn’t a Texas defender within 20 yards of Jones when he reeled the pass in.

Assalley’s 48-yard FG at the 12:09 mark extended the Iowa State’s lead to 20-7.

Texas scored 14 unanswered points, with the first touchdown coming from Ehlingher to Keaontay Ingram early in the fourth quarter.  After forcing an ISU punt, Texas marched 89 yards and converted a 4th and goal with a 7-yard touchdown pass from Ehlinger to Malcolm Epps.

Texas held their first lead of the game, 21-20, with 5:37 left on the game clock.

On 4th & 5 from the Texas 25 yard line at the 2:16 mark, the Cyclones lined up for a field goal in attempt to regain the lead. In a costly mistake, Texas LB Joseph Ossai jumped offsides giving the Cyclones a fresh set of downs.  The Longhorns had just two timeouts remaining, and Iowa State was able to run the clock down to :04 before Connor Assalley kicked a game winning 36-yard field goal.

The Longhorns head to Waco next Saturday to face the Big 12-leading Baylor Bears.

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Someone with a high level understanding of college football needs to be brought in to oversee Texas football and to advise CDC on how to best chart the future direction of UT football. I am not in favor of firing him at this point, but it is clear he can’t be allowed to have complete control of the program. He simply is failing in too many aspects related to the game day performance of the team. 

Tom Herman doesn’t seem to be handling some of the basics well. Effectively, his leadership of the program needs to be put into receivership. He needs to be put on notice of how he is failing, and given the help he needs to correct his weaknesses. 

It doesn’t appear he has mastered the problem of having the team ready to play during the initial stages of any game. The constant problem with penalties shows the team lacks discipline and that Coach Herman is failing to adequately coach the mental aspects of the game. This is especially troublesome considering Herman’s “Mensa” reputation. The defense isn’t being taught basic fundamentals of tackling. The coaching staff has no ability to self-scout. The offensive play calling needs to be addressed. 

The problems are evident. So is the fact that Tom Herman isn’t addressing them effectively. He needs help to see if his weaknesses can be addressed. If not, he has to be let go and we have to move on to new leadership. 

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This program hasn't hit the tipping point quite yet under Herman, but it's certainly inching closer to it. Heading into the season, defensively, Texas lost a lot of starters. The players were young - but athletic and talented. On the offensive side of the ball Texas had the promise of a Top-Big 12 team with a Heisman-worthy QB.  Ten games into the season with just six wins everyone, notably the coaching staff, is left wondering what happened and where to go.  It was inexcusable for Texas average just 2 yards per rush yesterday.  The offense has regressed.  Baylor is 9-1 and Oklahoma looks on pace to win another Big 12 Title. Those two nuggets have to be infuriating for fans of a team that hasn't won a conference championship in 10 years.  Since joining the Big 12, Texas has just 3 conference titles.  Oklahoma has 6, Baylor 2 and Kansas State 2.  

Herman has another year, maybe two before CDC pulls the trigger in that regard. He will be forced to make changes in his staff and will be given an opportunity to right the ship in that manner.

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I believe ou has 12 BIG XII conference championships, not just 6 which makes it even more frustrating. 

Be that said, I don't think Herman will be fired this year. However, Texas better kick a lot of tail next year or his seat will go from warm to flaming hot.

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Herman has always struck me as a CEO type of head coach. Similar to how Mack was and how Urban was at OSU. If that is true, he will have to have a quality OC and let him do the job. If on the other hand, he is more like Jason Garrett and can not keep from meddling then no changes will amount to much overall improvement. IMHO, the real improvement will be seen with a consistent, steady leadership from CDC. It seems like it has been a long time since there has been any real accountability over the athletics programs higher than the head coaching level. The lack of accountability may have led to a complacency or at least a feeling of invincibility. The Patterson debacle may have done as much to set the programs back as anything. Of course it is also entirely possible that the collective gooner influence I live around has skewed my ability to think rationally.

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4 hours ago, Aaron Carrara said:

This program hasn't hit the tipping point quite yet under Herman, but it's certainly inching closer to it. Heading into the season, defensively, Texas lost a lot of starters. The players were young - but athletic and talented. On the offensive side of the ball Texas had the promise of a Top-Big 12 team with a Heisman-worthy QB.  Ten games into the season with just six wins everyone, notably the coaching staff, is left wondering what happened and where to go.  It was inexcusable for Texas average just 2 yards per rush yesterday.  The offense has regressed.  Baylor is 9-1 and Oklahoma looks on pace to win another Big 12 Title. Those two nuggets have to be infuriating for fans of a team that hasn't won a conference championship in 10 years.  Since joining the Big 12, Texas has just 3 conference titles.  Oklahoma has 6, Baylor 2 and Kansas State 2.  

Herman has another year, maybe two before CDC pulls the trigger in that regard. He will be forced to make changes in his staff and will be given an opportunity to right the ship in that manner.

Going from 1st and 10 to 2nd and 35 during a crucial late game drive wasn’t because of defensive starters suffering injuries. Nor was the multiple PI calls when Iowa State was on their game winning drive. Nor was the offsides on 4th and 4. 

Texas doesn’t lead the conference in sacks allowed because of defensive injuries. Special teams being among the worst in the nation isn’t because of defensive injuries. 

The team is being poorly coached. CDC won’t fire Tom Herman now, but Tom Herman has shown he isn’t capable of leading the team on his own.

Just as Mike Perrin was brought in to put the athletics department into effective receivership, someone needs to be brought in to supervise how Tom Herman is running the football program. 

We have to put the training wheels back on until Tom shows he can do it by himself.

I have no interest in publicly humiliating Tom Herman, but so far he has failed. And I have no interest in putting up with any more of his post failure press conferences where he makes it clear he isn’t getting it that the problem lies at his feet. 

 

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37 minutes ago, MBHORNSFAN said:

Herman might be Charlie Strong with a better QB... Strong's record would be what Herman's is if he had Ehlinger.... 

Strong almost lost Ehlinger as a recruit. Charlie liked to wait. Ehlinger and family had no idea what he was waiting for and almost looked elsewhere because of the no offer.

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16 hours ago, tejasrulz said:

I believe ou has 12 BIG XII conference championships, not just 6 which makes it even more frustrating. 

Be that said, I don't think Herman will be fired this year. However, Texas better kick a lot of tail next year or his seat will go from warm to flaming hot.

Yep - typo.

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15 hours ago, Randolph Duke said:

Going from 1st and 10 to 2nd and 35 during a crucial late game drive wasn’t because of defensive starters suffering injuries. Nor was the multiple PI calls when Iowa State was on their game winning drive. Nor was the offsides on 4th and 4. 

Texas doesn’t lead the conference in sacks allowed because of defensive injuries. Special teams being among the worst in the nation isn’t because of defensive injuries. 

The team is being poorly coached. CDC won’t fire Tom Herman now, but Tom Herman has shown he isn’t capable of leading the team on his own.

Just as Mike Perrin was brought in to put the athletics department into effective receivership, someone needs to be brought in to supervise how Tom Herman is running the football program. 

We have to put the training wheels back on until Tom shows he can do it by himself.

I have no interest in publicly humiliating Tom Herman, but so far he has failed. And I have no interest in putting up with any more of his post failure press conferences where he makes it clear he isn’t getting it that the problem lies at his feet. 

 

I don’t think there is anyone out there that doesn’t think the coaching on this team is tremendously lacking. 

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Texas is overrated. Baylor that sucked 2 seasons ago has now had a better record than Texa$. It’s crazy to think that Iowa State is now beating Texas. I remember those days when Texas and Choklahoma would step into Jack Trice and put up 63 + points unanswered. Those days were painful as a Cyclone, but with our 3 star recruits and a coaching staff that can actually develop these rejects, we are not small boys anymore. This will continue to happen and nothing Texas or Oklahoma will do. The Cyclones are here to stay and continue to be relevant. Bad news for the big boys I guess.

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1 hour ago, CyclonePower said:

Texas is overrated. Baylor that sucked 2 seasons ago has now had a better record than Texa$. It’s crazy to think that Iowa State is now beating Texas. I remember those days when Texas and Choklahoma would step into Jack Trice and put up 63 + points unanswered. Those days were painful as a Cyclone, but with our 3 star recruits and a coaching staff that can actually develop these rejects, we are not small boys anymore. This will continue to happen and nothing Texas or Oklahoma will do. The Cyclones are here to stay and continue to be relevant. Bad news for the big boys I guess.

You are correct. It's crazy to think that Iowa State is now beating Texas. Your have now won 1 in a row, 2 of the last 5, and 3 of the last 10 games against Texas. 

 

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It's foolish to hope that Herman will mature into a better  coach. Year three should be where we see if we are progressing  or not. Well, we are not and that falls on Tom..  Finish the season but then it is time  to make a change. If I saw any indication the team was improving then change might not be needed, but with rumors of team infighting, it is just is not going g to get better.

 

 

 

 

 

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if he (Tom) loses his last two while losing to Tech bad, I'm thinking some major changes would be made. If he doesn't, i guess hes willing to go down with the ship because next year I would imagine he would be on a very hot seat and a short leash.

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Tom Herman is still young as a head coach in his 5th year. I think he has a lot to learn and often gives me that impression at press conferences. By contrast, Campbell is in his 8th year and Rhule is in his 7th. I'm not saying Herman is the answer, just that he is probably still on a learning curve and may yet improve to become the man here.

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1 hour ago, Coot said:

Tom Herman is still young as a head coach in his 5th year. I think he has a lot to learn and often gives me that impression at press conferences. By contrast, Campbell is in his 8th year and Rhule is in his 7th. I'm not saying Herman is the answer, just that he is probably still on a learning curve and may yet improve to become the man here.

Let's let Herman spend the next several years LEARNING? Texas is supposed to endure season after season of mediocre football in the hopes that he will one day be an effective coach? It ain't gonna get any better with mensa.  

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2 hours ago, Coot said:

Tom Herman is still young as a head coach in his 5th year. I think he has a lot to learn and often gives me that impression at press conferences. By contrast, Campbell is in his 8th year and Rhule is in his 7th. I'm not saying Herman is the answer, just that he is probably still on a learning curve and may yet improve to become the man here.

Balancing the demands of running the Iowa State or Baylor programs differs fundamentally from balancing the demands of running the program at Texas. Just the added demands of media and alumni makes running UT’s program more demanding.

That being said, Tom Herman isn’t performing up to expectations as the head of the UT program. 

For a number of reasons, firing Coach Herman isn’t an option at this time. But allowing Coach Herman to lead the program without significant additional oversight also isn’t an option. 

Tom Herman needs to start delivering answers as to how he intends to address his weaknesses as the leader of the UT program. And he needs to start delivering them now. Any failure on his part to begin to rebuild trust and confidence in his abilities to lead the program will only serve to solidify the belief held by increasing numbers of individuals each and every week that the Tom Herman era at UT Austin has been a costly failure. 

Ee are at a point where CDC needs to show he was the right choice to lead UT athletics and the the confidence place in him by the Regents when he was granted his recent raise and extension was warranted. CDC is being paid at the highest levels of his profession. He needs to deliver leadership at a commensurate level and address the Tom Herman issue. 

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The loss Saturday at Iowa State has helped UT reach a a milestone for a decade. It has been ten years in a row that UT has lost at least 4 games for the season.
 
The record over that 10 year period with a least 2 more games left is 69-56 which is a 55% winning. This is an average of 7 wins and 5.5 loses average per season. That's four season for Mack Brown and three each for Charlie Strong and Tom Herman. 

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Herman needs an older mentor coach on his staff. Other than maybe Hand and Drayton, most of the staff are younger with less experience than Herman. That worked at a place like Houston but not at a program the size and scope of Texas. It remains to be seen if Herman would accept someone like that but an older coach with head coaching experience would be a huge asset to the staff and program much like Wade Phillips was for McVay in LA. 

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