Do you know why I love football and encourage every young man I see to play the game?
It’s what you learn about yourself and life. How deep you can reach within yourself to find the courage to keep going.
It’s about relying on the men standing next to you to be successful.
It’s about understanding that you can’t control everything and only focus on what you can control.
Always strive to be the best at everything you do. I could keep going for pages and pages…. I am who I am today because of football. Besides my family, this game has more of an influence on who I am than anything else. I love and respect this game.
I bring this up to keep things in perspective.
I am a fan like you and am frustrated by that game last night - just like you.
I can tell you that it hurts no one more then the young men that put blood, sweat and tears into that game.
Losing sucks and stays with you for a long time.
I still remember losing my eighth grade district championship game to Cook Jr. High in 1988. The score was 60 – 0, and it still bothers me.
We must all keep in perspective two things: 1) Texas can still win the Big 12. ... and 2) This game is about who the young men playing become and not about wins and losses.
You must always focus on what is possible and not what is not.
A championship is possible, and this team has the talent to do it. They just need to figure out how to execute well enough to do it!
I’m not a big analytics guy, but I do think you can’t help but look at some of the stats of this team to figure out what is going on.
The first stat I look at is turnovers. Last night Texas was minus-2 for 14 points.
On the season, they are minus-1.
If you look at the Cal game, this is the stat that tells you everything you need to know.
At the end of the first half, Texas was down by 2 points and had given Cal 14 points off of turnovers.
If Texas played the same game in the second half as they did in the first half and does not turn over the ball they win the game.
They did not turn over the ball, but they also did not play the same game. They only managed 10 points in the second half and had 33 in the first half. That’s not the same team.
When you are in a big game on the road, it is critical to take advantage of opportunities.
You see this by looking at Red Zone efficiency. When you get all the way down to the 20, you have to get 6 points. Texas and Cal exchanged scores in the fourth quarter. But Cal got 6 points both times, and Texas settled for 3 one time.
When you are trailing by two at half, you obviously have to outscore your opponent in the second half.
They did not get this done.
Sterlin Gilbert stated it best after the game when he said, "Our job is to score one more point than our opponent does. We did not do our job."
When you average 7.5 yards per rush (D'Onta Foreman) and run for 307 yards (Texas) and lose, you missed opportunities.
The other question I would have is why bother throwing?
A critical point in the game was in the fourth quarter and Texas had a chance to answer Cal's touchdown that gave them a seven- point lead. Texas decided to throw the ball all three downs and were forced to punt.
That is the opportunity this team needs to learn to seize. They missed it and they lost the game.
I started with the offensive statistics because you always focus on yourself first and I am an offensive guy.
The offense was really good last night. But it was not good enough. And you always have to ask what more could I have done?
The defense needs to do the same thing!
I actually thought Webb was going to throw for 400 yards in this game.
I was off because he only threw for 397. Give Cal’s passing offense credit. And the Bears can throw the ball.
But I also thought this defense would find a way to get three INTs.
Pressure on the QB was key to throw off the timing and create turnovers.
Texas had 0 picks and three sacks, and they all came against the same offensive lineman.
No. 75 for Cal was giving up sacks to whoever wanted them, and Texas only got three!
Cal did a great job of answering the rush by going to screens and draws to slow down the defensive lineman and catch the linebackers in drops going backwards.
Notre Dame did the same thing, and Texas struggled that night with screens and draws as well.
Pressure was key and Texas needed more than 3 sacks.
The three sacks Saturday night were by junior Naashon Hughes, sophomore Breckyn Hager and freshman Malcolm Roach.
All three Fox ends.
I know the Fox end is a rusher. But I want to see pressure and sacks from defensive tackles.
Cal’s offensive line was worse than bad, and Texas should have had more pressure.
This defense shut down the run. But their job is also to pressure the QB. And they need to be able to do this in the pass-happy Big 12.
You need someone besides your Fox end getting a sack. Lawrence Taylor did not have all the sacks for the Giants! Remember George Martin and Leonard Marshall????? They had a few sacks in their careers! Texas runs a similar 3-4 defense!
I saved the worst for last!
I am completely lost by this secondary right now. I almost don’t know what to say.
Looking at the stats, you can see they gave up 397 yards passing, 4 passing touchdowns, two blown coverages and countless big plays through the air.
I am still confused by the lack of respect for Hansen. He should have been the focus of our secondary. And I’m not sure he was.
This is the third game after training camp, and I can only assume that the best players are playing.
If that is the case, then the coaches HAVE to find a way to get them to play better.
There is too much talent not to be better.
Coaches coach and players play. But it is up to the coaches to get the best players on the field. Not best talent, but best players.
Again, no one is more disappointed in the performance of the secondary Saturday night then the players and coaches. It is a time to self-reflect and figure out what needs to be done to get better.
I also want to address this team's road troubles.
Playing on the road is difficult, but not impossible.
You have to relish the chance to go on the road and win a road game.
When you start to see a trend in a football team it can become a habit quickly.
Strong and the leaders on this team need to figure out why this team struggles on the road before it becomes a habit. Habits are hard to break.
After talking about everything that was wrong with Saturday night, let me point out a few things that we can focus on to stay positive.
Texas is averaging 44.67 points per game, 262 yards through the air and averaging 4.6 yards on the ground. All very impressive.
Maybe the best punter in college football and a freshman QB with a 66.2 completion percentage after only his 3rd game. A defense that is holding their opponent to under 36.96% on third down, 3.6 yards per rush. This is a 2-1 team that beat a top 10 team in their first game.
Always finish on a positive and ask what you can do better.
All is not lost and this team controls its destiny and that is all a team can ask. I may be a homer and drinking the Kool Aid, but I still believe in this team.
There's a 24-hour rule in most locker rooms. At that point, don’t tell me about yesterday, because I'm focused on today and what I can do about tomorrow!!!!!!!
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