Preview 2019: Texas. 5 Things You Need To Know, Season Prediction

Preview 2019: Texas. 5 Things You Need To Know, Season Prediction

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Preview 2019: Texas. 5 Things You Need To Know, Season Prediction

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2. KEYS TO THE SEASON

Biggest Key To The Texas Offense

The running game has to be better. More to the point, it has to be more effective and a bit more explosive. The Texas offense was able to wing it around when it had to in shootouts, and Sam Ehlinger was and will be more than fine on the midrange throws to keep things moving, but for a team that relies on ball control, turnovers, defense, and third down conversions to own games, being able to average more than 3.77 yards per carry would be a plus.

The ground game wasn’t awful, but it only hit the 200-yard mark once, and that came against Tulsa early on in the season. That game, the blowout win over San Jose State early in 2017, and the win over West Virginia later that year were the only three times the team averaged over five yards per carry under Tom Herman.

And those were the only three times the ground game ran for over 200 yards. By comparison – not that this is necessarily a positive considering the overall results – Texas ran for 200 yards or more eight times in 2016.

Biggest Key To The Texas Defense

Besides having to fight through the growing pains of a massive youth movement, coming up with more key third down stops would be nice. Of course, all Big 12 defenses get graded on a curve considering the offensive firepower in the league, but the Longhorns struggled on third downs against USC, Georgia, and in key spots against Maryland, too.

The D only held an offense to under 30% on third downs once, and that was in the tight battle against Tulsa early on. The D allowed 50% or more five times in the last seven games, and 45% or more seven times in the last eight.

Get the 44% mark to under 40, and the offense will take care of the time of possession part of the puzzle on its own.

Key Player To A Successful Season

DE Ta’Quon Graham, Jr. 
Or Malcolm Roach. Or Marquez Bimage. Or Jacoby Jones. Or any of the defensive ends that have to replace Charles Omenihu and Breckyn Hager. The pass rush was just okay throughout last year, but getting into the backfield wasn’t a problem and the D did a great job of generating plenty of tackles for loss.

There aren’t any real issues in the secondary – the corners will be fine – and the linebackers are young and talented. Now it’s up to the 6-3, 295-pound Graham – who came up with 12 tackles with two tackles for loss as a reserve – and the rest of the ends to wreak havoc in the backfield.

Key Game To The Texas Season

LSU, Sept. 7
This is the moment when Texas has to prove that the Sugar Bowl win over Georgia wasn’t just because the Bulldogs had their guts ripped out by Alabama in the SEC Championship.

Of course it’s a new year, new players, new parts of the puzzle, but after all the “Texas is back” stuff after that terrific win in New Orleans, it all goes bye-bye if the Longhorns can’t take care of a fantastic LSU team in the showdown in Austin.

Win, and the College Football Playoff hype will be legit. Lose, and with a brutal Big 12 schedule ahead, there’s almost no way the Longhorns will better the ten wins of last season.
Texas Schedule Breakdown & Analysis

2018 Texas Fun Stats

– 3rd Quarter Scoring: Texas 117 – Opponents 38
– Time of Possession: Texas 32:19 – Opponents 27:31
– Average Yards Per Carry: Texas 3.8 – Opponents 3.8

NEXT: What Will Happen

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