Texas: Facts and Factors

UCLA has a history of being a kind of Longhorn program spoiler, with two of its wins over Texas, in 1997 and last season, sending the Lonhorns on season-long spirals...

FACTS AND FACTORS

-- The Texas Longhorns come to the Rose Bowl to play UCLA Saturday at 12:30, with the game televised by ABC. Bob Wischusen, Bob Davie and Samantha Steele will be the commentators.

-- Texas is 2-0 and ranked 24/21 in the nation, while UCLA is 1-1.

-- Texas beat Rice at home, 34-19, and squeaked by BYU, 17-16 last week at home.

-- This is the first road game of the year for the Longhorns.

-- UCLA and Texas have met five times in their history, with UCLA holding a 3-2 edge. The Longhorns won the first two meetings, in 1970 and in 1971. UCLA has since won the last three contests, the 66-3 win in Austin in 1997, the 49-31 win in Los Angeles in 1998, and last year's 34-12 victory in Austin.

-- UCLA has earned a rep with Texas as being a bit of a program spoiler. In 1997, Texas was ranked #11 in the country when UCLA shellacked them, and the loss sent Texas on a season-long spiral, finishing 4-7. Last season, Texas was 3-0 and ranked #7 in the nation, but after UCLA ran over them, the Longhorns spiraled again, finishing the season 5-7. The 1997 season for Texas led directly to the firing of Longhorn coach John Mackovic.

-- In other words, Texas has a huge amount of motivation in playing against UCLA.

-- Texas, of course, is one of college football's most successful programs, having won four national championships, the latest being in 2005, while being #4 in all-time winning percentage and #2 in all-time victories (trailing Michigan in both categories).

-- Last season, when Texas registered its losing season, it was in the midst of the second longest streak of 10-win seasons in NCAA history. It had gone 9 seasons, from 2001 to 2009, winning 10 games each season, second only to Florida State's 14 seasons (1987-2000).

-- Mack Brown is in his 14th season as Texas's head coach. During his tenure (1998-present) the Longhorns are tied for second among the NCAA's most winningest teams, with 135 wins, second only to Boise State's 141 and tied with Oklahoma. Under Brown, the Longhorns have posted Top 10 finishes seven times in the lat 10 years. Prior to his arrival, UT hadn't finished in the top 10 in five years. He is currently 13th on list of the NCAA's all-time victory leaders among coaches, with 221 career wins over the span of 28 seasons.

-- Texas has won 36 of its last 40 games in September under Mack Brown.

-- The Longhorns' faithful, however, aren't sold on the direction of the program at this time, and have been doubtful ever since UCLA beat them in Austin last season.

-- Last week against BYU, at home in Austin, the Longhorns were down at halftime 13-3, just as they were against UCLA a year ago, and you could hear a smattering of boos among the fans. This time, however, Texas came back in the second half to pull out the game.

-- Brown made major changes to his coaching staff after last season, with six new assistant coaches, including Co-Offensive Coordinator Bryan Harsin from Boise State and Defensive Coordinator Manny Diaz, who was considered a rising star coming from Mississippi State. His out-going DC, Will Muschamp, was considered the head-coach-in-waiting but got tired of waiting and took the head coaching job at Florida.

-- Texas played 14 true freshmen in its first game of the season against Rice, in an effort to give youngsters a chance to prove themselves.

-- The weather looks to be perfect on Saturday, with a forecast of 76 degrees.


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