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Texas opens season with 59-3 blowout win over UTEP

Photo: USA TODAY Sports Images



Following months of uncertainty, Saturday night marked the return of Texas football for the 2020 season. The Longhorns welcomed UTEP to Austin looking to build on an offseason where Tom Herman retooled his coaching staff and looked to build on a resounding bowl victory to end the 2019 season. Texas fans did not have to wait long to see the new look Longhorn offense. Sam Ehlinger opened the game by hitting Josh Moore on a 78 yard touchdown on the first play from scrimmage, and the senior added 4 more touchdowns through the air in the first half to pace Texas in a 59-3 victory in the season opener.

It was a big night for the Texas offense, which finished the evening with 690 yards. Ehlinger led the way with 426 yards through the air and Keaontay Ingram led all running backs with 44 yards on 9 carries. Josh Moore was Ehlinger’s favorite target, finishing with 6 catches for 127 yards, but it was a team effort for the Longhorns receivers and tight ends. 7 different pass catchers found the endzone, including walk on Kai Money and graduate transfer Brenden Schooler.

The Longhorns revamped defense under Chris Ash forced three 3-and-outs in the first four UTEP possessions. The Miners 5th possession ended with Josh Thompson picking off Gavin Hardison. Hardison had a rough evening, finishing 12 for 27 for 141 yards and no touchdowns. The Miners lone points of the game came on field goal late in the first half, but the Longhorns responded with a quick 75-yard drive capped by Ehlinger’s final TD of the evening, a 6 yard pass to Money, allowing the Longhorns to take a 45-3 lead into halftime.

The second half featured many of the Longhorns backups and underclassmen. Casey Thompson tossed his first two touchdown passes of his career to Brennan Eagles and Marcus Washington. Freshman QB Hudson Card made his collegiate debut in the 4th quarter, rushing for 7 yards. Highly touted freshman RB Bijan Robinson saw steady action throughout the evening, finishing with 5 carries for 38 yards and 2 receptions for 9 yards.

The win gives Texas a 1-0 record heading into Big 12 play. The Longhorns will travel to Lubbock on September 26th to take on Texas Tech, who squeaked out a 35-33 victory over Houston Baptist to open the season.

Jameson McCausland is originally from Frisco, Texas, where he grew up a Longhorn fan. His two favorite sports are football and baseball, both of which he covers for HornSports. He enjoys spending time with family and friends in his spare time. Jameson is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin.

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