Friday Longhorn Sports Page

Stay up to date on all things Burnt Orange with a daily stop at IT's Longhorn Sports Page, with links to the latest news and opinion articles on UT football, basketball, baseball, recruiting and other sports from around the web.

Football

Missouri Preview: The Pressure of No. 1
InsideTexas.com
The Texas Longhorns are officially in unfamiliar territory. They know what they face in Chase Daniel and the Missouri offense, they know what they face in Sean Weatherspoon and the Missouri defense, but this group of Longhorns has never had to defend a No. 1 ranking. And they will have to do it against a top-flight opponent when the No. 11 Tigers come to town.

The Inside Texas Podcast
InsideTexas.com
The Texas Longhorns are No. 1! But how will they handle it? On this episode of the podcast, Inside Texas' Ross and Ross break down the win over OU and what it means for the series, if being No. 1 will affect Texas on the field and the keys to the Missouri game. Plus, they also find time to squeeze in some basketball as the Horns gear up for the 2008-09 season.

Texas' trouble on top
Austin American-Statesman
Fans love it when their football team is No. 1. History, however, suggests that for the Texas Longhorns, a top ranking can be an extra weight to lug onto the field, a bull's-eye to wear on an orange or white jersey.

Cosby, Shipley let their numbers do the talking
Austin American-Statesman
They're not very big. They're fast — quick-fast but not blur-fast — and one day, they will be exposed as being shorter than the depth chart tells us. And on a team with massive pieces of humanity such as Adam Ulatoski and Brian Orakpo, they can easily be overlooked. They don't seem to mind.

Notebook: Whittaker may be ready to return
Austin American-Statesman

Texas solves short-yardage issues
Dallas Morning News
After struggling with their short-yardage offense against Colorado, the Longhorns were much more effective last week against Oklahoma, with Cody Johnson scoring three times on goal-line situations.

Missouri's Chase without a comeback
San Antonio Express-News
As a freshman in 2005, Missouri quarterback Chase Daniel came off the bench to rally the Tigers to a 27-24 victory over Iowa State. But since he took over as the team's starter in 2006, Daniel never has won a game in which Missouri trailed at any point in the second half (the Tigers are 0-8 in those games).

True freshman Blake Gideon contributing like a senior for Texas
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
The ritual occurs shortly before the opening kickoff when Texas safety Blake Gideon, the youngest player in the Longhorns' lineup, locates coach Mack Brown on the sideline. "He walks up to me with a grin on his face and says, 'I hope you're not nervous,' " Brown said. After six games and six victories with Gideon, 19, as Texas' starting left safety, Brown admits he is not nearly as antsy about having a true freshman manning his last line of defense as he was when defensive coordinator Will Muschamp raised the possibility during fall drills.

UT's loss was Missouri's gain
Houston Chronicle
Chase Daniel always wanted to be a Texas Longhorn. His sister went to Texas. His high school coach at national powerhouse Southlake Carroll — Todd Dodge — was a quarterback at UT. The back window of Daniel's truck had a Longhorns sticker on it.

McCoy quietly handling pressure
Daily Texan
Texas quarterback Colt McCoy turns his phone off the morning before a game. That's a good thing, considering that he got about 120 text messages during Saturday's 45-35 win over Oklahoma. "People like to text me during the game like, ‘Oh, good play,'" McCoy said. And as high-profile as the Texas quarterback has been over the past few weeks, everything's about to go to a different level.

Chase Daniel found his perfect place at Missouri
Kansas City Star
The pennants, the posters, the pictures are boxed up and put away. Chase Daniel doesn't know exactly where. But he knows that his room back in Southlake, Texas, is no longer a shrine to Texas Longhorns football. And as Daniel leads No. 11 Missouri to No. 1 Texas for a prime-time college football game Saturday night, Longhorns coach Mack Brown contends that is as it should be.

Saturday's MU-Texas preview
Kansas City Star

Still in the picture?
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
In this what-have-you-done-for-me-lately world of instant and often capricious analyses, that previously gleaming object in your Heisman Trophy Viewfinder became fuzzy and grainy after Mizzou's 28-23 loss to Oklahoma State on Saturday.

Tigers strive to free up Maclin
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Missouri has a lot of weapons on offense, but none more potent than Jeremy Maclin. As a freshman, Maclin exploded onto the college football scene last season with 2,776 all-purpose yards, an NCAA Division I-A single-season freshman record. The total was the fifth-most ever by any player in a season in Division I-A history. Great stuff, but there's a sidebar that comes with it in this sophomore season for Maclin. He is no longer a "newcomer," he is a marked man.

Secondary will face stern test
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Leading 17-14 late in the third quarter against Oklahoma State, the Missouri defense had limited the Cowboys to 118 passing yards and thwarted any big plays through the air. But two huge throws by quarterback Zac Robinson changed the course of the game. The 40- and 31-yard touchdown catches by Damian Davis, who entered the game with six career receptions, were instrumental in keeping the Tigers from claiming a No. 1 ranking.

Daniel stayed true to his Tigers committment
Columbia Missourian
David Yost has never considered the possibility. What if blue-chip quarterback Ryan Perrilloux had never committed to Texas? What if quarterback Chase Daniel, a former standout at Southlake (Texas) Carroll High School, had received an early scholarship offer from the Longhorns and lived a childhood dream? What if Daniel's career at Missouri had never happened?

Tigers still eyeing football title, for now
Columbia Tribune
Losing the sixth game of the season isn't new for the Missouri football team. It's exactly what they did last year. The only differences are that this time, the loss happened in Columbia, and the perpetrator was Oklahoma State, not Oklahoma. After that loss, the Tigers reeled off six straight wins, advanced to the Big 12 Championship and ascended to No. 1 in the rankings before a second loss to Oklahoma.

Hoops

With Durant's help, James improves perimeter game
Austin American-Statesman
To fully understand recent progress in the evolution of Damion James, you have to be an early riser in possession of the security codes needed to enter Cooley Pavilion. In lieu of that, the Longhorns' junior forward will explain. "You'll be surprised at how much I've improved on the perimeter," said James, who averaged 13.2 points and 10.3 rebounds a game last season. "My ballhandling. I've extended my shooting range." Much of that work came with the help of Kevin Durant, the former Longhorn who spent June attending summer school and going one-on-one against James during workouts that began at 6:30 a.m.

Barnes, Longhorns meet the press
Dallas Morning News
The Texas men's basketball team returns nine of its 10 leading scorers, although concern remains about replacing the one who left: All-American point guard D.J. Augustin.

Slimmer Pittman pivotal to Longhorns' ascent
San Antonio Express-News
Damion James remembers an unfortunate run-in with a Dexter Pittman elbow. The effects lingered. "It messed up my life for awhile," James said. And this is exactly what the Texas Longhorns need from Pittman this season, which officially kicks off today with the start of practice.

Stars missing, but Longhorns setting sights high
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Texas basketball has made a lot of off-season news, thanks to the commitment of three highly regarded recruits expected to sign in November and the pending four-game series with North Carolina that's slated to begin next season. And Texas coach Rick Barnes will be the recipient of the 2009 John Wooden Legends of Coaching Award. But the focus turns to the immediate with the opening of practice today. The Longhorns return four starters, 73 percent of the scoring and 80 percent of the minutes played from an Elite Eight team that won a school-record 31 games and shared the Big 12 regular-season title.

Preseason media day transcript: Rick Barnes
TexasSports.com
Longhorns' head coach answers questions from state media at Thursday's preseason media day; Texas tips off the 2008-09 season with a closed practice on Friday at Cooley Pavilion.

Women's hoops recruiting

UT women to host two basketball recruits
San Antonio Express-News
Kelsey Bone, the No. 2 prospect in the 2009 class, will take her final official visit this weekend at Texas. She has previously visited Texas A&M, South Carolina and Illinois. Bone, a 6-foot-5 post from Fort Bend Dulles in Houston, will be joined on the visit by Tayler Hill, a 5-11 guard from Minneapolis. Hill is the 12th-ranked prospect in the nation.

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