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View from the Cheap Seats-Alabama


echeese
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View from the Cheap Seats-Alabama

 

Coulda/shoulda/woulda

 

Deja vu all over again. Stop us if you have heard this before, 1st quarter, at their goal line and Bama knocks out the TEXAS QB with a shoulder injury. Shades of the 2010 National Title game. In a million years, we’d have never called TEXAS not just beating the spread but being in a position to argue coulda/shoulda/woulda won the game. There have been 3 MASSIVE games at DKR in the 21st century, when Norte Dame came calling, LSU in 2019 and Bama in 2022. If you want to add Top 10 Mizzu in 2008, we will not argue. TEXAS showed incredibly well in all 4. Frankly, should have won all 4. In a million years, we did not expect to type that in 2022.

 

In a game which has been anticipated since it was scheduled, with a build up to the game which was off the charts, the TEXAS Longhorns quite simply played their Bevo loving backsides off.

 

In a million years we’d have never called TEXAS being more poised, more ready for prime time and making more plays than Bama. Even without his QB1, Sark called a great game. We’ll nit pick a couple play calls later but for now, outstanding game plan. He was the superior coach on the field. We had thought this would come down to a discussion of Jimmies & Joes vs X’s an O’s but Sark/PK/Patterson and crew had their guys more ready and honestly were superior to Nick and company. And make no mistake, Nick had this game dialed up for sometime. Bama seemed like the young inexperienced team. They were not sharp highlighted by dropped passes and a Saban era record 15 penalties and the zebras missed more 3 obvious violations.

 

So one Jimmy & Joe who was the difference for Bama, Bryce Young. Gotta give the Heisman QB credit, interesting he was a high school point guard and a player Sark recruited. He played like a high school point guard on grass. He was poised despite at least 3 maybe more drops by Bama WRs and Bama’s miscues. Despite a relentless at times pass rush and without Bama’s vaunted rushing game, Bryce Young put the Bama team on his back. Our hats off to him, without him TEXAS wins.

 

PK or Patterson?

 

One of TEXAS’ biggest off season story lines was “Special Assistant to the HC” Gary Patterson joining the TEXAS staff after being let go by TCU. So who gets the credit for TEXAS’ almost perfect game on D against a more talented offensive line, Georgia Tech transfer Jamyher Gibbs (one of the top transfer backs in the nation) and the aforementioned, Bryce “Mr Heisman” Young at QB? Well let’s start by giving the players the lion’s share of the credit as they played almost flawless football. A team with a horrid past of allowing broken tackles and busted coverage came up with the best defensive effort since. . . .. ? It’s been sometime. TEXAS would force Bama to punt 6 straight possessions covering both the 2nd and 3rd quarters. TEXAS would hold Bama to 161 yards rushing, with 81 of them coming on one run.

Whether it was PK or Patterson, we think they both deserve credit, this game will push Patterson even higher on the “hot coaches for 2023” list. It was clear, the defense went up against one of the best offenses in the nation and did more than enough to win the game.

Before Quinn Ewers went down with a shoulder injury, the TEXAS offense was humming. 2 scoring drives of 65 and 75 yards to open the game saw some of Sark’s best play calling at TEXAS, and this against arguably the #1 defense in CFB. While TEXAS came up with 10 points on those first 2 drives, a blown/obvious/WTF were they watching, non-pass interference call on Sanders should have had TEXAS 1st and goal at the 2 not trying a FG. In a 1 point game, clearly every point matters. Hudson Card got the call as QB2 and it wasn’t long before he would injure his ankle. This might have been what would end up costing TEXAS the game as he was good after injury but clearly could not get the velocity on his throws, including a pass to Xavier Worthy in the 4th quarter which should have been an easy TD/at least a long gainer. But with a bum ankle Card could not drive the ball. Kid left it all on the field for TEXAS. It’s his team until Ewers returns.

One battle that TEXAS lost was the field position battle with 3 of their 11 drives starting at/near the 25 and 5 drives starting at the 15. Tough to win games against a great D having to drive the length of the field.

We would be remiss if we did not give some props to the offensive line which we felt damned TEXAS’ chances. They still have much growing to do but overall, we saw improvement compared with last year.

 

 

Stats that matter

  • 1 of 5 Touchdowns scored by TEXAS red zone trips, if you want one stat that cost TEXAS the game, this is the one.
  • 15 Number of penalties by Bama (we did not find a single bad call). A Saban era record.
  • 3-12 TEXAS on 3rd down. Granted this against the Alabama D but you cannot win games without sustaining drives
  • 1-2 Bama on 4th down. We highlight this to focus on a key 4th down stop. We heard one announcer claim “well the Bama back tripped over a linemen’s feet”. True. Upon further review, on that 4th down play, the TEXAS DL had actually pushed the Bama line back.
  • 0 Turnover gained/committed. TEXAS’ best shot was when D’Shawn Jamison dropped what should have been an easy pick for him.

 

Offensive player of the game

 

Jordan Whittington, 7 catches 3 of them for 1st downs and several of the catches contested. He became the safety blanket for both QBs.

 

Honorable Mention: Xavier Worthy, 5 catches 97 yards.

 

Defensive player of the game

Kaylan Ford 2 tackles for loss (-18 yards) and a sack to go with a team leading 10 tackles.

 

Honorable Mention: The defensive, we came into the season thinking major liability and they came up big.

 

Special teams

Daniel Trejo 5 punts with a 46 yards per punt + average. The highlight was a punt pinning Bama at their 1 and flipping the field position game.

 

Conclusions:

 

Sark now faces a new coaching challenge. He still has a largely young and inexperienced team. There is no question he had his charges up for the Bama challenge. Can he continue this level of performance week in and week out? Can he keep the Longhorns from “eating the cheese”/”reading their press clippings”? Let us not forget 2019 where TEXAS had another coulda/shoulda/woulda style game with LSU and that loss was part of 4 additional losses that year. UTSA will come into DKR this week playing their biggest game in history, the roles will be reversed before TEXAS gets on the road to Lubbock and TT. We are going to offer one small nit pick, we ran wildcat with Roshon on 3rd down near the red zone. At some point, let Roshon throw. The Bama defense collapsed on RJ but replayed showed there was a TEXAS receiver wide open for a short pass/1st down. Overall, both CO’s called great games. X’s & O’s did not beat TEXAS.

Fighting Mack Brown’s

 

Gene Chizik doesn’t seem to be helping Mack much. After giving up 40 4th quarter points to App State last week, this week it was Georgia State scoring 18 in the 3rd quarter to make things way too interesting. Tar Heels are 3-0 but today we don’t see them making too much noise in the ACC.

 

Ranking the BigXII

 

This is still way early.

 

#1 Oklahoma Beat up another tomato can. They have Nebraska on deck. Upset might save Scott Frost’s job but do the Bugeaters have the horses?

#2 Oklahoma State Nice win vs Herm Edwards Zona State Devils

 

 

#3a Baylor tough OT loss on the road at BYU

#3b KSU Took Mizzu out behind the woodshed

#3c TEXAS If Sark can hold TEXAS near this level of play, they should earn a trip to Dallas. . . we shall see

#3d Texas Tech OT win vs ranked Houston in OT

 

#7 Kansas SAY WHAT? Yep, OT win over WVU

#8 ISU Win over Iowa with a baseball like 10-7 score

#9 TCU 2-0 after beating tomato can Tarlton

#10 WVU

Note: May take a few more weeks to separate the BigXII teams. Right now even the traditionally weak teams are playing well.

Game Highlights

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_faYnQBM0A

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Nice writeup, agree on all points.

4 hours ago, echeese said:

15 Number of penalties by Bama (we did not find a single bad call). A Saban era record.

I assume you're talking about the 15 that were called when you state "we did not find a single bad call" because there were several missed calls that could have turned the tide per say. 

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5 hours ago, tejasrulz said:

Nice writeup, agree on all points.

I assume you're talking about the 15 that were called when you state "we did not find a single bad call" because there were several missed calls that could have turned the tide per say. 

Like the missed blatant holding call when Young scrambled to set up the winning field goal. 

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