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Ringing the carillon - Campus Report (by: Kylie Hopkins)

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I could write this article solely on the abysmal football performance on Thanksgiving, but that would just dredge up more feelings of disappointment, and I have tried to put behind me this past week.

Instead of describing every technical problem I saw on the field, I will instead focus on the largest problem I saw: fear. Swoopes played scared. I can’t say I’m entirely surprised; it’s not as if his season has been spotless and TCU is a highly ranked team. What did surprise me was the effect that it had on the team’s performance as a whole. This game would’ve benefitted from a leader taking charge, and Swoopes was unable to fill that roll against the Horned Frogs.

The absence of a consistent presence like Jaxon Shipley really affected the way Swoopes chose his routes. The Shipley brothers have been known for their ability to make plays and be a safe choice for the throw, but Jaxon’s injury sidelined him, and it shook up our quarterback’s playbook.

But I digress, that game is behind us, and we will move forward into our bowl game with Arkansas, Coach Strong’s home state.

Twitter this week has been chock full of comments on the SEC’s decision to select Arkansas instead of Texas A&M for the bowl game against Texas. The SEC has been decidedly mum on the subject, but it was no secret that the conference was not keen on the inter-state matchup. There has been a plethora of ideas about why Arkansas was selected over the Aggies, but it seems to me that the SEC was protecting its own skin.

A loss to the Longhorns would damage the SEC’s reputation. They pride themselves on being the “biggest and baddest” conference in NCAA football. If the Aggies were to lose, it would reflect on the original decision that they made to leave the Big 12 in the first place for a “more challenging” conference. The friends that I follow that attend A&M have stayed mostly quiet on the subject, though many would’ve liked to see the old rivalry renewed.

The Big 12 conference has attracted its share of controversy this week: The coaches blatantly say in the official Big 12 commercial that the teams are battling to name “one true champion.” Then, for some reason, the conference decided to name two. …What?

Their choice is something that I am ridiculously confused about. The lack of a championship game for our conference screwed us in the end, and many believe (including myself) that it was the cause of our sudden disappearance from the college playoffs.

As an avid supporter of my conference, I am extremely saddened that we aren’t represented in the first college playoff. It’s hard to choose a team to root for when they aren’t yours, but Oregon has my vote. Plus, I’m incredibly sick of Alabama and Florida State.

In other playoff news, Texas volleyball is competing against Colorado State for a trip to the quarterfinals. This will prove to be the most difficult team that Texas has faced yet in the race to the championships. Colorado State is an impressive team, and the matchup should make for an exciting match.

It makes me proud to see the Longhorns excel in sports other than football. As we regain our football prowess, we can still appreciate the work ethic and athleticism of other athletes, such as basketball and volleyball.

The last week of school has passed, and students have crammed themselves into the PCL. We are huddled around Starbucks and notecards - nights are long, and I am, quite frankly, exhausted. Tickets for the bowl game are on my Christmas list, but I will be just as happy sitting in front of a fire with a cold beer, cheering on my Longhorns. 

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There's no doubt in my mind that the SEC wants nothing to do with helping Texas. They have to protect their investment in aggy. There was no way that they were going to pit aggy against us in any bowl. aggy has way more to lose than we do in that situation. Right now they are still riding the wave of momentum from joining the SEC and JFF. Even though they struggled this year, they still have the upper hand when it comes to recruiting in this state. Losing the game to us would completely end that advantage. Beating them on the field would negate anything Sumlin says. He couldn't walk into a recruits house any longer and say come play for us because we're in the SEC and we're better. The beatdown that would have occurred in that game would have ended them.


LSU wasn't an option for a similar reason. Although LSU had a "down" year according to their standards, they still have the name and nationwide reputation. Us playing and beating them would give Strong a signature win heading into the end of this recruiting cycle. The SEC wasn't going to let that happen either. They know that Texas getting back to where Texas was 5 years ago is not a good thing for the schools who recruit here, namely aggy and LSU so they aren't going to do anything to help us.


Thus we get Arkansas. A team that finished at the bottom of their division, but was playing much improved football by the end of the season. A game that if we win doesn't give us a recruiting boost, but if we lose ends our season on a sour note. A true lose-lose situation. I'm ready for Mike Slive to retire from the SEC, but I'm also just as ready for us to get out of this joke of a conference.

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As an old schooler to the rivalry, I absolutely loathe the lowly hawgs. 


Like they did pre-game in the Rose Bowl vs. Michigan,  I hope the Longhorn band marches on the field pre-game and while playing March Grandioso, stops midway during the tune and YELLS OUT:




Hook 'Em!!!



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Kylie, you are dead right about Swoopes.


My thoughts are that what cost the Big 12 a spot in the playoff was having TCU and Baylor competing for it instead of Texas or OU. Either of them in the same situation would have made it. Its about the brand, and the ad dollars a team can raise for the networks.


Arkansas is a very competitive team for us. Sure, anybody would have loved the play the Aggies, but it will be fun to see them get about 60 hung on them, though the West Va. QB may be out. It could still happen.


The secret to a win for us in the bowl is the QB. If Swoopes performs like he did at times, we will be fine. If he doesn't, I hope Charlie put our best walk on in. As old and crippled as I am, I could have done better than Swoopes against TCU. His play was a killer.


Talk about a "deer in the headlights" look. We cannot have that at Texas. I hope the young man gets his stuff together.

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