Pre-Game BYU

 The Times They Are a-Changin’

Culture change is a bitch. But it’s better than 30-21 over a four year period. Honestly though, it’s for the best, don’t you think, not to have the players blowing herb, especially during the season? It seems that at least 75-80 Longhorn players are getting along just fine with the stipulation that you can’t have THC coursing through your veins to remain a Longhorn scholarship athlete in good standing. I’m pretty sure even I could have met that stipulation for a free education. Pretty sure, I think. I find it interesting that the players who are failing to meet this stipulation are veterans. Evidently, the last coaching regime was more lenient in this regard. You’ve got to respect Charlie Strong for sticking with his principles for the long-term good, of his team even if it hurts—a lot—in the short term.

“Hang on Defense, Hang On”
To be sung to the tune of “Hang on Sloopy”

Does anybody appreciate good defense anymore? I’ve heard some commentators express appreciation for the Longhorns’ defensive performance against North Texas but from fans all I’ve heard is criticism and worry about the offense, even before we knew David Ash was likely out for good and Kennedy Estelle and Desmond Harrison had been suspended. I know it was just North Texas, but holding any D-1 program under 100 total yards is impressive. As I recall, North Texas had about 40 yards total before Texas started liberally substituting in the second half. I’m genuinely excited about watching this defense perform this week and the rest of the season. For those of you who don’t know or can’t remember, the 1983 Longhorns came within a muffed punt of winning the National Championship solely on the strength of great defense and special teams. If memory serves, that ’83 team used three quarterbacks. One had never played a college down, one had one start going into the season, and the third had been riding the pine for two seasons. That team also rotated four starting tailbacks due to injury. I could go on about the injuries to veterans along the offensive line that year, but you get the idea. Okay, I admit that 1983 was a long time ago and we’re in a different college football era, but I still believe championships can be won on the strength of great defense and special teams.
Until Tyrone and the rebuilt offensive line figure it all out.
Hang on defense, hang on.

Tyrone Swoopes

So everyone seems sure that Tyrone Swoopes can’t play at all. This certainty is based on what exactly? The fact that he didn’t play well in the Spring Game combined with his lack of experience and 5-13 for 26 yards career passing stats? Of course, I’m concerned about his lack of game experience, but I see no overwhelming evidence to convince me that he can’t be a serviceable, if not a down right solid performer. If absolutely nothing else, he brings a running component to the offense that David Ash did not. His running threat should open up things more for Brown and “J Gray”—I like saying “J Gray”—perhaps make the offensive line’s job a little easier.
Here is information on his background from Texassports.com.
HIGH SCHOOL
Four-year starter, including three at quarterback … participated in the 2013 U.S. Army All-American Bowl … rated No. 4 overall and the No. 2 quarterback in the nation by MaxPreps … selected No. 88 overall on PrepStar Magazine’s Dream Team and the No. 6 QB in the nation … ranked the No. 6 QB in the nation by FoxSports.com … tabbed the No. 13 QB in the nation by Rivals.com and 247 Sports.com … listed No. 21 on the Austin American-Statesman’s Fab 55 (state’s top prospects) … rushed for 5,341 yards and 73 TDs while passing for 3,850 yards and 41 touchdowns during his career … named honorable mention 2A All-State by the Associated Press as a senior … selected 2A-2 Honorable Mention Academic All-State by THSCA … completed 16-of-22 passes for 175 yards and three TDs, while rushing for 305 yards and three TDs against Nocona … invited to Nike’s 2012 “The Opening” … invited to the Elite 11 Camp … named 2012 preseason Dave Campbell Super Team Offensive Player of the Year, first-team 2A All-State … selected to the 2011 U.S. Air Force Junior All-America team … completed 110-of-209 passes for 1,359 yards and 15 TDs as a junior … rushed for 2,268 yards and 29 TDs on 170 carries … rushed for 560 yards and seven TDs on 29 carries to go along with completing 12-of-25 passes for 146 yards against Tom Bean … also played guard in basketball, outfield in baseball and participated in track and field in high school … competed in the long jump, triple jump, 4x400m, 4x200m, 4x100m and shot put.
He’s a member of the Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll (spring 2014)
*************
Also I’ve read on Orange Bloods and Barking Carnival that Swoopes is popular with his teammates and held in high regard. Oh yeah, and he doesn’t smoke dope. Just saying.
Here’s a video put together by Barking Carnival of every snap Swoopes has ever taken as a Longhorn. Take particular note of the 50-yard beauty of a pass he threw that Mike Davis dropped.        

Deep Horn

Over the years, on numerous occasions, I’ve cited a source with decades-long close ties to the program when reporting certain information about Longhorn Football. This year I’m going to try to have a section each week where I report information from this source, and I’m going to call this section “Deep Horn.”
Early this week, I heard from Deep Horn that–in the long and perhaps even near term– Jake Raulerson is an upgrade from Dominick Espinoza, especially in the running game.
How ’bout that for some unconventional wisdom?

Not only that, but I’ll bet Raulerson and Swoopes have the exchange from center down pat.

I also heard through “Deep Horn” that early Sunday morning David Ash had much more serious concussion symptoms than headaches and dizziness.

Burnt Orange Colored Glasses?

I think Texas beats BYU this week. I’m calling it 23-13. Am I wearing burnt orange colored glasses? If I am, I can tell you it feels great. It feels great to care again. On a totally objective note, I believe all the people with a gloom and doom outlook for the Longhorns smack of “me tooism.” I may have just made up a word there.
For all those predicting Texas to finish the regular season record between 5-7 and 8-4, I ask these questions. Do you think this football team is worse off with Tyrone Swoopes or Jerrod Heard than it was with Case McCoy? Do you not think this year’s defense is not a substantial upgrade over last year’s that will be the difference between winning and losing at least two games?

Download of the Week

This is another new weekly feature where I’ll reveal my favorite song download of the week

“Rainy Night in Georgia” by Boz Scaggs from his Memphis album.

HooK ‘eM,
W.E.

Over/Under Contest

8 Comments to “Pre-Game BYU”

  1. W.E., glad to hear C. Strong has knocked off all the nonsense, smoking hooch, slurpin’ smoothies in tanning chairs, maybe there were hot tub parties like the scene in American Hustle, steamy rooms, chiquitas in string bikinis, overweight coaches lumbering around in ill-fitting swim gear, cack in the back, God knows what the hell was going on there! An embarrassment, but the bong hit parade has ended! Our now clean-cut crew will not face a cleaner cut crew than Bring ‘em Young University and maybe we will out-clean ‘em! I just saw “Book of Mormon” (on Broadway baby) so I have a forecast of what awaits Austin when the fan buses arrive, “Two by two, we’re marching door to door, ’cause God loves Mormons, and he wants some more!” Maybe, we will survive the onslaught, though, and the black nametags the team wears on the front of their jerseys instead of emblazoned on the back. No one likes revenge more than people in my part of the world (Revenge Nexus of the Planet), so they will relate to Orangeblood-thirsty Texas fans lusting for cougar hide. Go get ‘em boys!

  2. Not sure what the final stats will look like, but I’m convinced BYU will load up to stop the run. I expect Swoopes to connect on 4+ pass plays of 40 yards or more.

  3. OK…I’ll admit that drinking the kool-aid is still more fun, even though I had to cold-turkey the LSD and Crown chaser…

What Say You?