FINAL SCORE: Baylor 28 â€“ Texas 7
First half: Baylor 7 â€“ Texas 0
Second half: Baylor 21 â€“ Texas 7
First half observations
Baylor goes for it on 4th down in their opening drive & got it only on a good 2nd effort. That conversion was followed by a questionable PI call on Shock Linwood and a delay of game penalty on Petty (trying to audible). A weak punt gives Texas the ball in Baylor territory. Thatâ€™s as good of a start as the Horns can ask to have.
After a nice 3rd down conversion where Swoopes ran with more confidence than he has all season, Rose has a FG attempt blocked. His kick was way too low and Baylorâ€™s speed shows up as it gets returned for a TD. The opening 6 minutes go as well as they possibly could for Texas , yet Baylor leads 7-0.
Swoopes missed single coverage outside when he overthrew Shipley on 4th down (on Texasâ€™ second possession). For the first time this season, Swoopes looks uncomfortable. On the first three drives, his footwork, timing & accuracy are all off the mark.
Texas canâ€™t capitalize on an explosive run from Jonathan Gray, early in the 2nd quarter. The OL doesnâ€™t hold up in pass pro and Russ has to punt. Luckily that explosive run & the punt combine to pin the Baylor offense inside their own 20-yard line.
Peter Jinkens got totally turned around in zone coverage and the defense left the boundary wide open for an easy completion and run.
Baylor takes advantage of poor tackling by Texas (too many arm tackles) and goes straight down the field, but an unbelievable goal line stand by the Horns keeps it 7-0.
Some solid playcalling and execution helped the offense move the ball across midfield (following the goal line stand). Then solid off tackle runs & a timely personal foul penalty allow the Horns
to tie it at 7 blow a huge opportunity to have a tie game at halftime. 99 yards, 14-plays, and more than 7 minutes in TOP and Texas walks to the locker room with nothing to show for it.
Second half observations
Strong calls a questionable timeout on Texasâ€™ first possession in the 3rd quarter. The play was unfolding right in front of him, and obviously he saw something he didnâ€™t like. The resulting 3rd down pass to McFarland is short of the marker and Texas goes 3 & out on their first possession of the half.
The defense forces a 3 & out on Baylorâ€™s first possession too. A nifty return by Shipley helps negate a great punt. How long can the defense & special teams hold this level of effort? Even though the offense hasnâ€™t been bad, the pressure is still on them.
The taunting call on Harris is precisely what this offense does not need. Thatâ€™s hidden yardage that has to be re-gained.
Fake punt, rush, rush, throw over the top. Just like that itâ€™s 14-0. So much of the Bearsâ€™ offense is rhythm and the special teams play seemed to find it for them.
In their possession near the end of the 3rd quarter, Texas got 20+ yards in 2 rushes from Jonathan Gray. Then they had 3 straight incompletions â€“ strange playcalling, especially with the success Texas has had running to the right side.
Despite what the scoreboard says, this feels like a game where the Texas offense has been the most productive it has all season. Conversely, this is the first time Swoopes has looked like a first year starter.
Baylor abandoned the passing game and repeatedly ran it up the middle on their 3rd touchdown drive. That is the kind of offense that Texas wants. It also makes Texasâ€™ choice to quit running it on the possession at the end of Q3 even more painful.
The garbage time touchdown made the scoreboard look better, but it did little to satiate the fan base.
Looking at the game without emotion, it could have been Texas leading 10-7 at halftime if not for missed opportunities. The fake punt was another obvious turning point and missed opportunity. You can play â€œwhat ifâ€ all day with this game. That isnâ€™t Pollyanna talking, itâ€™s reality. This game was closer than it felt.
The entire team (coaches & players) all realize that the offense is holding this team back. Thereâ€™s a lot of political correctness going on when the cameras are on, but everyone knows the defense is giving the team a chance to win. How long before players start to press & try to do too much in an effort to compensate for the offense?
Baylor had 22 first downsâ€¦only 2 more than Texas
Baylor had 389 total yardsâ€¦only 55 more than Texas
Bryce Petty was 7-22 for 111 yards with 2 TDâ€™s
Baylor had 21 more points than Texas
This game was about converting opportunities and making production count. Baylor did it. Texas did not.
Charlie Strong: â€œWe donâ€™t know how to win yet. We donâ€™t know how to finish. Told you guys a while ago, we are going to eventually get over the hump, but we got to win these games.â€
Charlie Strong: â€œI donâ€™t know if we say itâ€™s [the offense] a big mess. We drive the ball. We just, we have those opportunities and then thereâ€™s a breakdown.â€
Charlie Strong: â€œItâ€™s not so much the talent of the quarterback. Itâ€™s the whole offense.â€
Art Briles: â€œI think Coach Strong has done an outstanding job at UT. I thought their players played with a lot of passion, a lot of effort, very well schemed on both sides of the ball.â€
Art Briles: â€œIt was just a grind it out win. This team, for them to do it, says a lot about them. It shows a mature, tough minded, confident football team that knows how to win.â€
Art Briles: â€œI think we are a better team than last year and thatâ€™s just the bottom line.â€
Bryce Petty: â€œIâ€™ll have to be honest with you, my head is still spinning trying to think about it [the Texas defense]. They threw so many looks at us, coverage wiseâ€¦I couldnâ€™t tell you what they did on consecutive plays.â€