Added Brown, "You always look hard at personnel, you look hard at simplifying, and you look hard at what you didnt do well and (ask) how do you get it fixed. Those are the things that we need to do. Theres a certain amount of your football life that dies when you lose. Theres some depression. Theres some anger. Theres some confusion. And, if youre not careful, there can be some finger pointing. Weve been fortunate here not to have any of that. Those are all the things you have to deal with today. You try to correct and move forward without taking a step back in your team chemistry."
Browns biggest concern was not a rushing offense (MIA since the Iowa State game in October, 2002) but a sporadic defense that gave up big plays at the worst possible moments.
"You cant give up seven explosives (big yardage plays) and expect to win," Brown said. "They were critical explosives at a time when we were fighting back into the game."
The defense surrendered more rushing yards on two plays (Cedric Cobbs 46-yard TD right after FL Tony Jeffery fumbled at midfield and then QB Matt Jones 3rd-and-1 naked bootleg that went for 39 yards that put the game on ice on the fourth quarter) than the Texas offense generated all afternoon (62 yards on 29 carries).
"When we responded and made plays, we didnt stop them after that," Brown added. "Every time we put ourselves in a position to go win the game, they made another play and we didnt stop them. Normally, we step up."
The defense stepped up in spots, but the record shows that Texas was particularly susceptible on third down. The Hogs converted 10 of 18 third down attempts, often on third-and-long.
"We played really well in some areas," Brown said, "and when you lose nobody recognizes that. A lot of times we stopped the run. We had them backed up at the goal line (3rd-and-30) and it was exemplary of the day where they threw the ball over our head for 56 yards. It was just really inconsistent. We made some really good plays; we didnt make as many as they did."
The other component that derailed Texas was turnovers, Brown said. The Horns gave up three fumbles, including SE Roy Williams drop at the Texas 5-yard line.
"Thats probably 21 points worth of turnovers," Brown noted.
You could easily argue that Texas gave up six turnovers: a 13-yard punt, a 17-yard punt and allowing a fourth-quarter kickoff return to your own 36 is, in effect, the same as a turnover.
"Those are things that you can correct and that weve got to fix," he added.
But will the running game be fixed in our lifetime?
"We continue to see some positives but were not pleased overall with it," Brown said.
What were the positives?
"Theres certain plays that looked really good when we ran them and then there were some that made nothing,"
Lets see, was the "really good" one where RB Cedric Benson reeled off his personal-best 8-yarder? Or was it when QB Chance Mock got 15 scrambling against a relentless blitz? Because some of us might have missed those "really good" ones with our faces buried in our hands.
"Were still out of sync with it," Brown said, for what seems like the 12th consecutive game. "We said coming into the year that we have to stop the run and weve got to run the ball. We didnt do either one of those well enough, or consistently enough, Saturday to win. Its on me."
And its on to Never-Never Land if you think Texas is going to a BCS Bowl this year. If Brown can remedy between now and the Kansas State game the very things hes been trying to fix since January, and if he get such significant improvement from what we saw Saturday to run the table in the Big 12, then what will be "on" Brown are conference coach of the year honors.
Because now there is no margin for error. Its going to take nothing less for Texas to realize its goals that now teeter on the brink just midway through September.