Culpepper's Commentary: Sam Houston Game

Did you have the same problem I did this last week? When my friends asked me who the Longhorns played, I had to shake my head and laugh when I answered.

If Coach Mack Brown has little to do with the scheduling as he claims, he should.

Just because you play Ohio State doesn't give Texas or any other BCS school the right to play Division I-AA opponents.

Perhaps the reason in Austin is that the women's softball team needs money, or they're adding another assistant athletic director's position? Regardless, loyal season ticket holders shouldn't have to pay for the nonsense we witnessed Saturday.

In the Austin American-Statesman newspaper on Sunday, offensive coordinator Greg Davis was quoted as saying, "Colt (McCoy) is playing with a whole lot of poise. He's proving that he is extremely accurate."

In the Dallas Morning News on Sunday, head football coach Mack Brown was quoted as saying, "I wish we would have put Jevan (Snead) in more (this season). He's such a strong runner. We do feel now he could go in and help us win."

Wonder what was going on during spring and two-a-days in the evaluation of these two young quarterbacks? Me, too.

With those 'no-contact' jerseys on them, you've turned picking a quarterback into being determined by people skills rather than football skills, and in determining varying coverages rather than executing against those coverages.

I could be wrong here, but it is interesting after the heat of battle this last weekend, the Texas head man recognizes toughness, arm strength and the ability to run the football in his back-up signal caller.

Maybe Jevan Snead can't sing Kumbaya with his teammates, but he has a rifle for an arm and has enough speed to be effective as a ball carrier. Also, he will lower his shoulder to score. It isn't rocket science.

But since coach Davis is gaining confidence in Colt McCoy, it should be interesting to see if Texas throws the ball more downfield against the second legitimate secondary Texas has faced this season out of the six opponents.

The receivers are getting used to Colt McCoy's passes and holding on to the ball. They will get hit Saturday and contested. The cream will come to the top.

Henry Melton tiptoed his way to a non-statement day against Sam Houston. Don't be fooled; Big Henry is just a big target to top notch defensive linemen and linebackers like Oklahoma's.

Thank goodness for Selvin Young and Jamaal Charles and the Longhorn offensive line. They are a force to be reckoned with, and should be against the Sooners as well.

It's four weeks late, but the Texas defense appears to be ready for primetime. It will have to be to stop Adrian Peterson and Oklahoma's receiving corps.

As long as the Texas defenders decide beating Oklahoma is more important than fooling around Austin in the wee hours of the morning, there is a chance for brilliance Saturday afternoon.

Let's hope Brian Robison is able to play. He brings his heart and fights to win, no questions asked.

I saw the future Saturday for Texas linebackers. It doesn't get any better than Sergio Kindle and Drew Kelson outside and Rashad Bobino/Jared Norton in the middle. The start-inside-bounce-outside spectacular runs by Peterson in 2004 are still firmly burned in my mind. Kindle, Bobino/Norton and Kelson can catch him and deliver punishment. If necessary, Robert Killebrew can back up all three positions with, ahem, no loss of intensity.

At last the Longhorn secondary of Aaron Ross, Tarell Brown and Marcus and Michael Griffin seem to be all on the same page of the playbook and every one of them sprints to make contact.

I don't think Sooner quarterback Paul Thompson can beat Texas. Oklahoma probably feels the same about Colt McCoy and its chance of victory.

I call it 21-17, Texas wins.

Pat Culpepper played for The University from 1960-62 and graduated from UT with a B.A. degree with honors in history. He coached college football for 12 years as an assistant at Texas, Colorado, Tulane, Baylor and Memphis State and was head coach at Northern Illinois from 1976-79. He also spent 16 years as a high school coach in Texas at Midland, Lufkin, Galveston Ball, Westfield and his hometown of Cleburne. He was selected to the Longhorn Hall of Honor in 1991. His commentary appears regularly in the Inside Texas magazine and at

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