By Anthony Casson
Last Saturday was supposed to be a simple game for the Texas Longhorns football team. Playing Colorado these days isn’t usually a challenge, especially when you have them at home. Last season the Horns stomped on the Buffaloes, but this game gave quite the scare and also had consequences.
Winning 38 to 14 is a pretty convincing win for a lot of teams, but not if you’re the Longhorns (ranked #2 at the time). Colorado came into Austin having won only a single game, yet they managed to put 14 points against Texas’ 3 through most of the first half. The Longhorn offense played like a frantic group of schoolgirls, but luckily they had a great defense and special teams to back them up. Texas was even stopped for the first time this season from scoring in the red-zone (blocked field goal attempt). Overall, they did not play like the #2 team we thought they were, which is why the AP poll dropped them to #3. Hope is far from lost however.
The Longhorns should be thankful for such an event, because next weekend they play ultimate-rival Oklahoma in Dallas. Had this performance occurred during the Red River Rivalry, Texas would definitely not be in the top 10 nationally and all hopes for a championship would be lost. Now it’s down to whether Mack Brown and his men can bounce back from this, because they are certainly taking a verbal smacking from critics. If one coach can reboot a team, though, it’s Mack. This is their time to stand up and prove the nation that they are one of the best, if not THE best in the country, but it requires following through. Anything less will result in failure; maybe not overall, but definitely in terms of title hopes.
Sitting at third spot behind Florida and Alabama is not bad. They are two very good teams, no doubt, but they will ultimately have to play each other for the SEC title if they continue their winning streak. If the Horns maintain their composure, beat Oklahoma as well as the remainder of Big 12 opponents (including the Big 12 championship contender), they will be perfectly in place to play for the National Championship in Pasadena. You can be sure though that Coach Brown is keeping his men focused on the “next” game rather than the entire season.
It may feel awkward to be a Longhorns fan right now, but just relax. The time may come when we can sprint onto Guadalupe Street and cheer the new champions once again. If you don’t like the Horns, well then…I guess good luck with that.