Coaches look closely at personnel following every game, Brown said, adding that any changes in the lineup will not be announced until Tuesday. That includes speculation about walk-on P Richmond McGee whose first two punts Saturday averaged 15 yards (a 13-yarder and a 17-yarder). Many were surprised when the place-kicker wrestled the starting position away from P Taylor Landin during the final week of two-a-days, even though neither had punted the ball in an actual game.
"Hes (McGee) been much more consistent in practice than anyone else," Brown said. "You dont throw everybody out. And he came out and did well at the end of that (first quarter). He had a 55-yarder and a short one rolled. But thats the first time hes been under that much pressure punting in a ballgame like this so Ill help hell learn from that."
Brown continued his post-game lament about the defense giving up too many big plays (seven) and the offenses inability (going on three years now) to run the ball. Stats are obviously skewed during the early season, but the fact is Texas run defense this week is a John Mackovician No. 103 (207.5 ypg) nationally while its rush offense is a Mack Brownian No. 82 (115 ypg).
Toss in the three fumbles, two lousy punts and the long, fourth-quarter kickoff return (combining to give Arkansas an average starting field position at near midfield) and the result is what Brown described as "the weirdest game."
"We did a lot of good things," he said. "What we didnt do was the things we had to do to win. And we did a lot of bad things. It was the weirdest game because it was drastic. We had great plays or bad plays."
Brown said the loss overshadowed good performances from QB Chance Mock, OG Tillman Holloway, C Jason Glynn, RG Will Allen, SE Roy Williams, FL B.J. Johnson and his two defensive tackles. He continued to deflect blame off of players and onto his coaching coach.
"Weve got to get the guys (defense) in the right place," Brown said. "On two plays we were right there and he (QB Matt Jones) outran us so we took the wrong angles," Brown said. "On the 50-yard isolation run, we took the blocker on with the wrong shoulder, he (RB Cedric Cobbs) bounces to the two safeties and he split the two safeties. And how in the world can you be in two-deep (zone) and give up a 3rd-and-30 pass on the goal line? We had a safety deep. Its a one-man route. There is no way that should happen. We have to do a better job of getting our hands on the receiver underneath and getting the safety over the top. I have to go back and look at what happened and why they happened."
The only three-and-out that the defense forced in the second half was on the opening series, and all the offense did with that gift was fumble at midfield. It made for a dispiriting afternoon for senior DT Marcus Tubbs.
"After watching the film, we were all really disappointed in our tackling since weve emphasized it so much," Tubbs said. "Were going to have to get better at it. Its only the second game of the season. We cant make improvements overnight, but were going to get better."
But can you make improvements in a fortnight, when No. 6 Kansas State comes calling followed by that little diversion against top-ranked Oklahoma? That critical stretch will forge the legacy of the 2003 Longhorns.
DE Bryan Pickryl (left shoulder) is listed as questionable for the Rice game, as is MLB Garnet Smith (right foot). RT Justin Blalock was wearing a medical boot on his right foot after playing hobbled against Arkansas.
RICE: Although Rice University continues to announce a 7 p.m. kickoff time for Saturdays game at Reliant Stadium, ESPN.com is listing the game as an 8:15 p.m. affair for broadcast on ESPN2. The network is reportedly hungry to jump at its first chance to broadcast a Texas game for the first time in years, since it is in a contract with the WAC but not the Big 12. Rice is not expected to announce a schedule change until Wednesday, according to Texas athletic officials.
TULANE: Texas will kickoff at DKR against the Green Wave at 6 p.m. for a TBS telecast, it was announced Monday.