Ask Brian Jones

Former Longhorn and NFL linebacker Brian Jones answers your questions.

Q: Against Kansas, did you sense a change in gameplans on both sides of the ball from what we had seen in previous weeks -- no imagination on O or D? What got into Davis and Robinson? Did they think they could beat Kansas without really trying?

B.J.: I think what happened is, we put a lot of onus on the coaches but you've got to go back to the players. They did not show up! They just left their game back here in Austin, and that just happens from time to time. You've seen a lot of good teams do that. You can come off a very big, emotional win the way they won a week prior, then you have to go play a team that is basically in the toilet bowl of your conference, and you're not going to get up for that game. That's a hard game to get up for. It's easy for Kansas, it's their Super Bowl, but it's hard for The University of Texas or any other school that is ranked as high or higher than Texas is. It's hard for you to go in there and get up for that team, so that happens. It's human nature. You take a team lightly, you go in there and play badly, and they played badly but in the end they were able to get it done and that's the mark of a good football team. If you can play that poorly and still come out with a victory, that's a pretty good football team.

Q: When a team pulls out a game like this in the last minute against a inferior opponent, are you a glass half full or half empty guy? In other words, does the simple fact that Texas won the game overcome the fact that they almost lost to one of the two worst teams in the Big 12?

B.J.: We all know Texas is a good football team. When they bring their 'A' game, they're a good football team, one of the best teams in the country. We know that. That's a given, so I think you have to say the glass is half full. They went out and laid an egg. They'll tell you, the coaches will tell you, they did not show up. The players did not. They took them lightly. I've been on many teams that have done that and I've been on teams that have done that and gotten beat. This team was able to overcome that and get the victory, so they played when they had to play. You see it in every sport, you see it at every level, if you don't bring your 'A' game, you take a team lightly, the game ends up being closer than you thought. A&M against Baylor. A&M clearly went in there taking Baylor lightly. They beat them 73-10 the year before. Took 'em lightly, and look what happened. They allowed them to hang around and hang around and then at the end they got stung. Texas was able to overcome their three-and-a-half quarters of bad play and get the job done.

Q: This ought to be an easy one: just talk about Vince Young and what he's shown in leading the team back the last couple of weeks...

B.J.: Man, this guy is a trip. That fourth and 18. I didn't think he was making it. I was like, 'There is no way he picked that up. There is no way, because he picked it up so easily.' It was effortless, and it looked like he got it 'like that', in a split second. 'There's no way he covered 18 yards in that amount of time.' But he eats up grass like a lawnmower. The kid is phenomenal. And what I like about him, he kept his poise. Yes, he played poorly in the first half. A lot of the team played poorly in the first half. He had a lot of dropped balls, but he kept his poise and went out there and didn't panic like I was panicking and like all Longhorn fans around the nation and I'm sure some of his teammates were panicking. He didn't panic, and that's what matters is that he doesn't panic. He showed a lot of poise and that's great. I happened to run into him the other night at the basketball game and told him he better quit giving me these heart attacks. But he was masterful in that last drive. And Tony Jeffery, tip your hat to him because he had a helluva game, his best game as a Longhorn. Tony caught that touchdown pass and the defender had his hand in between the ball and Tony's chest, so that was a helluva job just to hang onto that one. That was great.

Q: What's up with that suit you were wearing on Fox Saturday? I tried to adjust the vertical on my TV, but it didn't help...

B.J.: [Laughs] It's funny, everybody's been messing with me about that suit, I like the suit! Everyone that saw it on television, they weren't too receptive to it, but everyone that saw me in person loved it. It's one of those deals where television didn't really do the suit justice. I think that's what happened because everyone that saw me on television has not been too positive about the outfit, but everyone that saw me in person loved it. I think the lavender stripes -- they're lavender stripes but they're not just pure stripes, they're different designs. It's like a design but they're still pinstripes, so I think that's why it came across all funky. It looked like there was still work left to do to the suit! Like tailor marks. Apparently, television didn't do it any justice so that's not good but hey, I like it. I'm gonna wear it again! And don't adjust your sets...

Have a question for the next 'Ask Brian Jones'? Send to insidetx@realtime.net.

Brian Jones played middle linebacker for the Longhorns in 1989 and 1990, leading the team in tackles both seasons and earning all-SWC honors as a senior before an eight-year NFL career with the Colts, Dolphins, Raiders and Saints. He also recently worked as the sideline reporter for the Longhorn Radio Network, host of Longhorn Sports Center and co-host of a popular radio sports talk show in Austin. His 'Ask B.J.' columns appears weekly during football season on InsideTexas.com.


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