Checking the Pulse at Practice

It was a normal day at Frank Denius Athletic Field Tuesday. At least, that's what Texas head coach <B>Mack Brown</B> wants you to believe.

Nope, there was no particular focus on getting the ground game untracked (at least no more than usual). And, yes, the seniors stepped up to address a team that has been accused lately of lacking not only intensity but also leadership, but then again, they have stepped up all season.

"Are there any other questions for Coach Brown? (Pause) Thank you for coming."

This is a good thing, right? It’s productive to normalize the first practice session after what happened in Dallas, right? Reporters need to see that no one is pointing fingers or pushing the panic button, right? The kids, of course, are watching.

Then again, to say there has been additional emphasis on a particular facet of the game is to admit that there might be a problem there. To be fair, Brown has said in previous weeks that he is very concerned about the running game (he went so far as to say the second half performance against North Texas in the season opener made him "want to vomit").

Okay, he’s paid the millions to fix the problems and win the games. We just want to know how the heck you go about getting the kids back on the bus to face a road team that is, statistically, better on both sides of the ball than the one that kicked your ass on a neutral field? Is there an answer Tuesday other than "I don’t know." What was the spirit at practice? How are the players feeling? For pity’s sake, tell us everything’s going to okay!

"Today I thought they came back out with a tremendous amount of pride," Brown said. "They know we want to win the ballgame this weekend but they also know how good Kansas State is. So, they’ll play really hard. Today, they all stepped up. They’re wanting to win. They’re good kids. They knew they won three quarters the other day, and lost the fourth. That’s not what we’re all about. We want to win the fourth quarter, too."

RB Cedric Benson said the spirit was good at practice but that the team is understandably fatigued.

"A lot of guys are drained because they put so much energy into last week and into the OU game," he said. "We know we have to come out here and work hard and get ready for K-State. "

Horns Digest Top Stories