Texas Healing Up From Injuries
Timothy Cole Earns Start at WLB
One of the benefits to getting a new defensive coordinator is that, because he's coming with an outside point of view, he isn't necessarily locked into the same players. And with Hicks out for the season, Cole has emerged as a favorite of new defensive coordinator Greg Robinson.
Brown said Cole was outstanding in practice, and that Robinson wanted to try him out in a more expanded role this week.
"He just felt like the kicking game performance that Tim had for Kansas State and the fact that he did so well in practice last week gives him the opportunity to start," Brown said.
Bye Week Productive For Defense
Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads called Texas's loss to Ole Miss "a wash," citing the fact that the Longhorns didn't have a complete defense in to take on the Rebels. He said that the Kansas State game, while Texas was also simple there, was a better indicator of what the Longhorns are doing defensively.
Of course, that mirrors what Brown has said all along about the Texas defense, which should be even more improved after a bye week. Robinson is now entering his fourth week on the job, and Brown said the defense is starting to take shape.
"We had to get our whole package in defensively," Brown said. "Greg has had three weeks now instead of three days. He's getting it there. I'm impressed by the way the coaches are working together. So he should have more blitzes in this week because he didn't have many blitzes against Kansas State on third down and that hurt us some in the passing game because we were man coverage and those two speed receivers hurt us."
Still, Texas's game plan proved effective against the Wildcats, and Brown said the Longhorns could use similar looks against the Cyclones.
"Iowa State is a very similar team to Kansas State with what they do and with a lot of their personnel," Brown said.
Longhorns To Honor James Street
This isn't nearly enough space to describe Street and his impact on Texas and college football, and I'm planning a more comprehensive story later this week. But Street was a gifted athlete at Texas who won 20 straight starts and the 1969 national title in football as Darrell Royal's Wishbone operator at quarterback. He also was 29-8 as a pitcher at Texas, throwing both a perfect game and a no-hitter, while helping the Longhorns advance to three College World Series berths.
Even past that, Street was a fantastic ambassador for the Texas program, a gifted storyteller who easily converted strangers to friends.
He died early Monday morning in Austin, at the age of 65. The Longhorns will wear a white decal with an orange 'JS' on their helmets against Iowa State on Thursday. Brown also said he would have the team watch a video on Tuesday to better understand Street's impact on the game.
" James is a guy that we will all really, really miss," Brown said. "If you didn't have a chance to be around him, get to know him, or have his infectious personality help you, you really missed something."
Brown continued to call Street "a great American, such a great Texan."
"Nobody has ever done more for the University of Texas in football than James Street," Brown said. "May he rest in peace. We will really, really miss him. So the players will enjoy honoring him."
Earl Campbell's Comments
Burly back Earl Campbell won the Heisman Trophy in large part by being, ahem, direct in his running style. And he's often duplicated that trait when sharing his opinion. This past weekend was no exception, when he said that it was time for Brown to step down, and added that he wanted to see somebody like former Longhorn Jerry Gray get a shot at the head coaching job.
Brown responded on Monday.
"Earl has been great for this university," Brown said. "He will always be welcome here. He's one of if not our best player ever. I was disappointed in the comments, but he's entitled to say what he thinks."