West Virginia Pre Game

Predictions and Bad Hats

When I first started getting to know my Sigma Phi Epsilon pledge brothers at UT in 1974 and ’75, they were surprised and bemused when they learned about the depth of my knowledge of Longhorn football history and trivia. For instance, back in those days, I could recite the exact scores and arcane details of every Longhorn football game going back to 1968. They weren’t always so bemused by the fact that I was kind of opinionated about football and a few other subjects. Oh well, I’ve never been accused of trying to win popularity contests. Now-a-days I still remember the scores and details of a handful of memorable Longhorn games going back to the late ’60s, but my savant like memory is long gone.

A few weeks after Helen and I began seriously dating in September of 1979, we went to the OU game together. Years later Helen would say that one of the things about me that she was attracted to was my knowledge of where to park at the Cotton Bowl. Parking for games at the Cotton Bowl is a specialized skill set.
Over the years, some people have assumed that since I was so consumed with UT football that I would be able to foresee the outcomes of big games. Well, in 1977 when Texas was a 16-point underdog to Oklahoma, I boldly predicted that Texas would win because of Earl Campbell and a stout defense. That prediction was more of a hope than anything else, but I didn’t let on to that at the time.

The night before the Big 12 Championship game versus Nebraska in 1996, when Texas again was a big underdog, I told a couple of highly skeptical drinking buddies that I thought “we” just might win. At the time, the only other person who was willing to state that opinion publicly was James Brown. In that instance I really thought we could beat the big bad “Big Red” because in spite of Texas’ 7-4 record going into the game, I knew that three of those losses didn’t reflect how good Texas really was. Texas lost to Notre Dame on a field goal at the gun. Hung over from that heartbreaker, they lost the following week in a torrential down pour to Virginia in Charlottesville. They lost a 17-point fourth quarter lead and the game to Oklahoma in overtime. Since those midseason woes and a 3-4 record, Texas had bounced back with four straight wins, including a very satisfying 51-15 beat-down of the Aggies.

To show you that I’m not just cherry picking some lucky “homer” predictions, I told Helen on the drive to the UCLA pre-game tailgate in 2010 that I thought “we” were primed for a big loss. I was right about that game, but I didn’t think the entire season and—as we know now—the program was about to slide into mediocrity.

You’re probably wondering, as Mark Kelting once asked David Bergstrom, “Bergy, what’s your point?” Or you’re thinking I’m going to make a bold prediction about a Texas win Saturday against West Virginia. No, I’m not predicting a win, but I am going to give you some reasons to be optimistic that Texas will get their first win of the season against a ranked team.

1. Dana Holgorson has really bad hair, or as the Sig Eps in the ’70s would say, he has a “bad hat.”

                                                                                                            Another Bad Hair Day

Another Bad Hair Day

     Bad Hats of the 70s

Bad Hats of the ’70s

      Nice Hat!

Nice Hat!







2. The offensive line will have the same starters for the fourth straight game and could—emphasis on could—open some nice holes for Malcolm Brown and J. Gray against a smallish West Virginia front seven.
3. Speaking of J. Gray, as Darrell Royal would say, he showed some “spurt” against Texas Tech. Maybe he’ll use that spurt to break off a long touchdown run.
4. Speaking of “spurt,” two words, Daje Johnson.
5. Two more words, Armanti Foreman
6. Mykkele Thompson can now see during games.
7. Jason Hall will be the healthiest he’s been since the OU game.
8. Back to the “bad hat.” This could be the game where Dan Holgorsen’s head actually explodes.
9. West Virginia gave up 34 points to Texas Tech. If you take out their shut out against Towson, West Virginia gives up 29 points per game.
10. Tyrone Swoopes might actually make a read on the zone read.
11. A Texas win would make my weekend.

Here’s a great story by Kirk Bohls on former UT assistant coach and recruiter Ken Dabbs, who is credited with bringing Earl Campbell to Texas.


HooK ‘eM

Over/Under Contest


2 Comments to “West Virginia Pre Game”

  1. MI missed the gun, W.E., for the O/U, so unable to see if I could start a streak. I have been a bit fuzzy today due to a raucous late evening at the Marine Ball last night at the Amman Four Seasons. The Marines know how to put on a great party, and it is always feels good to be an American when we drink copiously to their birthday (this was their 239th). We watched a film on the house-to-house Battle of Fallujah, though it kind of sucks that is now all for naught. I wish I could watch that West Virginia game, so I consoled myself by watching a replay of the 2005 BCS championship game on YouTube (had not done that before, believe it not). It was a great cure for a hangover! Hopin’ the Horns deliver on your prognostication!

  2. Roll Left is one of my favorite youtube-able Longhorn moments: “Fourth and inches.. No question what’s about to happen..”

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