Charles is the Big 12s second-leading rusher (116.7 ypg, NCAA No. 14) and trails Nebraskas league-leading Cory Ross by just two ypg. His 350 yards through the first three games of his career is the highest total over that span by anyone in Longhorn history, passing Phil Browns mark of 269 yards set 15 years ago.
Charles 148 all-purpose yards per game also ranks second in the Big 12. Both Young and Charles are expected to see action, early and often, at Missouri. Young has 78 yards on 13 carries and has, in essence, missed eight of the past 12 quarters of football.
"Well play them both and go with the one whos being productive," Davis said. "Certainly, at this point, were not afraid to play Jamaal in any situation."
For Young, its a situation where he tells coaches he feels well on certain days but then "he cant do anything" the next day, Davis said.
Young has fumbled in each of the two games he has played this season, a trait not uncommon for athletes nursing injuries.
"Injured players tend to put the ball on the ground more and Im not sure if theres a good answer why," Davis said. "It may be that theyre trying to protect themselves, mentally, or brace for the fall."
The freebies, however, are indicative of an overall team problem that coaches are specifically addressing in practice this week. The Horns have fumbled 10 times this season, losing two, while QB Vince Young has thrown four INTs. Texas turnover margin (-0.67) ranks No. 85 nationally, ahead among league foes of only the Horns next two opponents (Missouri, Oklahoma).
Coaches are directing the defense and the scout teams to focus on raking the ball away during practice, Davis said. The staff is also looking intently at game film and practice footage to see how players are carrying the ball.
WR Ramonce Taylor practices every day at RB for at least one series. The sophomore has seven rushes this season for 79 yards while catching four passes for 26 yards.
"Its harder to get the ball to a wide receiver," Davis said. "He is still learning the wide receiver position and all the little nuances that go with it. There have been several times when he and Vince have not been on the same page, but well continue to try to find ways to get him the ball and were going to continue to use him some at running back. He has great ball skills but, as a receiver, hes still a freshman."