Many eyebrows were raised on Monday when Charlie Strong said that it was up to each position coach to determine who played and that Strong doesn’t overrule coaches in that regard.
“That’s why they are coaching here,” he said.
Watson elaborated on this topic Tuesday saying that personnel decisions are made prior to a play being called.
“We're going to coach our style and do our business,” Watson said. “Charlie does a great job with the staff in terms of making sure everybody understands the plan for rotating guys in games, getting guys touches and playing people.”
Watson said Texas has made a commitment to play younger receivers and defensive backs, and that all of this is part of a process to develop “a team.”
“Then we pick the roles they can play in,” Watson said. “We're not going to put them out there in a situation, like in the end of the game or something like that, unless they have to go out there."
When we caught up with Longhorns AD Steve Patterson on Monday he said he expected this to be a rebuilding year for the program. That’s not how Watson viewed this season “because our job is to win.”
“We just knew we were in a process – that's the best way that I would explain it,” he said. “The process of teaching a culture, the process of teaching an offense and a defense. Then you go through some adversity and you've got to find your way through it. You've got to find your way through it like a champion because if you don't adhere to what you believe in and you stand for nothing then pretty soon it's going to be pretty evident to the team that you're false.”
A large reason for this was Swoopes not keeping his eyes down field understanding where the safety was.
“He started seeing the rush because they were running a lot of twist games on him, and a couple of guys broke free,” Watson said. “He's just got to re-center himself.”
The No. 1 thing Swoopes has to do, per Watson, is learn to protect himself with his feet.
“That begins by throwing on time and making decisive decisions,” Watson said. “Our decision game is real easy. We play, basically, make one guy wrong. He's got to trust that."
One of the main issues with Swoopes this season has been his inability to get rid of the ball when being pressured and taking unnecessary sacks. That’s something Watson has been working on with the sophomore QB.
Watson wouldn’t rule Perkins out for the game after suffering a bit of a knee injury against KSU.
Those screaming for Armanti Foreman to get more touches – six offensive touches so far – are going to have to hope he gets more consistent.
One of the main problems a young player faces is being able to decipher through an entire collegiate playbook. Once he gets that down, and works on his ball security, he’s going to become a bigger part of UT’s offense.
In talking with Charlie Strong and players on Monday you got the sense for just how important it was to all of them to make a bowl game this season. Watson echoed their sentiments on Tuesday saying that it’s “on everybody’s mind.”
“That's become the focus for everybody throughout the team,” he said. “Charlie has put that up in front of the team and our staff, and everybody has the same focus. That's our goal.”
“Taylor Doyle has done a really remarkable job – his transition between spring and today is totally different than where he's at right now,” Watson said. “He's playing with confidence and has become a solid piece of our offense. He's taken more of a leadership role with the offensive line. He's a guy you point to that's had success in the process. It wasn't all roses for him when he started either. He's had to grow into that.”
*****Longhorns 2015 QB commitment Zach Gentry's junior highlights
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