The Texas Longhorns (6-4, 4-3) head north this week to face an improved Kansas Jayhawks (6-4, 3-4) team under second year coach Lance Leipold. Both teams are bowl eligible, but for Texas that means very little. Steve Sarkisian went 5-7 in his first year in Austin, and hopes were high for a successful season in year two under Sark. Sitting at 6-4 with two games left, it will likely take the 'Horns winning out to consider the 2022 campaign a success. The Jayhawks went 2-10 last season, which included a win over Texas at DKR.
Saturday is senior day in Lawrence and the first matchup between the two programs there since 2018. The Longhorns will have their work cut-out for them against a potent Kansas offense that averages a whopping 7.33 yards per play this season. That stat is good enough for second nationally. The Jayhawks tend to struggle on the other side of the ball, ranking 117th out of 131 FBS teams in total defense. They give up an average of 443 yards of offense per game.
While Kansas has their issues defensively, it will take efficient play from the Texas offense to exploit them. Texas quarterback Quinn Ewers has struggled as of late and it has had an impact on the Longhorns' ability to both generate positive plays and score points. The Longhorns convert just 38.7% of their third down opportunities and must do a better job if they intend winning on Saturday and finishing the season strong.
Bijan Robinson ranks seventh nationally in all-purpose yards and had seven striaght games of 100+ yards rushing before ending that streak last week in the loss to TCU. Texas will likely need Robinson to carry the load against a Kansas rushing defense that gives up an average of 167 yards on the ground each game.
The weather will likely be a factor, with temperatures hovering around freezing at kickoff and winds ranging from 15-17 MPH.