Culpepper's Commentary: Texas A&M Game

Senior strong safety Melvin Bullitt of Texas A&M echoed what defensive players at Kansas State said about playing the Texas offense two weeks ago -- "We were going to be more physical than Texas and beat them off the line, and that is what we did."

You must understand that the Aggies play only six defenders up front to stop the inside running game -- even when the Longhorns lined up in I formation.

I now realize how Oklahoma won at Kyle Field. Bob Stoops used a hard running 2nd, 3rd, or 4th string tailback hammering behind his suspect Sooner offensive line and controlled the football against Texas A&M. Allen Patrick ran it 32 times!

It is too bad the University of Texas doesn't have such a mentality on offense because I believe with a 7-6 lead going into the fourth quarter, on Senior Day and with a trip to the Big 12 Championship in the balance, it seems to me with what has been a strong offensive line and two hard-running backs, coach Mack Brown could have cut off Greg Davis' press box phone and challenged his team to run the football for the championship of the South and a win over the Aggies.

Didn't happen.

After the Longhorns moved the football with Jamaal Charles and Selvin Young darting on cutback runs behind zone blocking for a couple of first downs, the Aggies shot a gap and held Texas to two yards on first down which is enough to cause Greg Davis a near stroke and make him lose confidence in running the football.

Immediately, Colt McCoy's number is called and the Longhorns are passing into the Aggies' five-DB scheme.

How dare we ever think Texas could line up with the lead and drive the football? That's apparently Darrell Royal, old-fashioned thinking!

Two passes net nothing and Texas punts.

Sixteen plays and 88 yards later, A&M quarterback Stephen McGee (playing like Bucky Richardson of Aggie yester-years) uses the reverse pivot keep off the option fake to his tight end side for two third down crucial first-down-makers and finally for an eight-yard touchdown run with only 2:32 left on the clock for Texas.

Three games ago, Colt McCoy was listed among Heisman candidates; in the last two, he hasn't finished the game as the Texas quarterback.

Did the Texas football team read their schedule incorrectly and think the Oklahoma State game ended the regular season?

They haven't played like the same team that performed brilliantly against Oklahoma in the second half or the comeback kids at Nebraska and Texas Tech.

The Texas secondary played one of its better games against the pass -- there was good coverage and they broke on the football and tackled the receivers. That is their number one job -- a game late, but at least they improved.

I thought Frank Okam played a solid game at defensive tackle and Rashad Bobino had a couple of outstanding plays as middle linebacker. I'm sure there were others up front that played well.

Scott Derry at outside linebacker is a question mark as far as I am concerned.

I could not see who was getting blocked and shoved into his teammates in pursuit on the Aggie tight side options during the 88-yard game-winning drive. It had to be a defensive end and it cost Texas a chance to make the Aggies have to kick a field goal.

The Texas defense did lose the K-State game but not this one.

Texas had the lead and the ball and refused to say, "Jamaal and Selvin, we're going to jam this football down the Aggies' throats right behind Hills, Blalock, Ulatoski, Studdard and Sendlein."

That's old school, un-spread-like and way too physical for the 2006 Longhorns.

Bowl games? Texas will be forced to have to go to the Gator Bowl against Clemson or the Cotton Bowl against an SEC opponent. They will be underdogs, as they should be.

The question is, does this football team really want to play against another outfit that plays smash-mouth defense and offense?

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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