Texas head coach Tom Herman spoke with the media Monday. Here are five takeaways from what he said:
Cool and collected
Herman said postgame that senior quarterback Sam Ehlinger told him “they left us too much time” before Ehlinger led the stunning late comeback victory over Texas Tech.
According to Herman, the entire team was relaxed despite being down 15 with just over three minutes to play.
“I wasn’t real stressed, I think I smiled at our athletic director who was standing on the sideline,” Herman said. “We were a very relaxed crew, even when adversity was hitting us from every side.”
It took a perfect bounce on an onside kick and two special drives from Ehlinger, but the Longhorns scored 15 points in the final 3:13 to push the game to overtime. Herman said no members of the team lost belief that they could come back and win.
Here are three takeaways from Tom Herman’s appearance on Monday’s Big 12 coaches teleconference.
Tackling work starts now
Texas defensive coordinator Chris Ash’s return to Big 12 play quickly turned into a long day at the office. The Longhorn defense allowed 441 total yards in Saturday’s win over Texas Tech. Poor tackling in the second half allowed the Red Raiders to storm in front late in the fourth quarter.
Herman said that whatever number of missed tackles they had Saturday, it was too many.
“You just practice,” Herman said. “You go through all your tackling drills, you add more into your body of practice. But in 2020 it’s not like we’re going to be lining up against our offense and running full-speed scrimmages just to get better at tackling. So we’ve got to find a way to do it in drill work.”
Sam Ehlinger has taken a spread-the-wealth approach to begin the season as he acclimates to a largely inexperienced cast of pass-catchers. This effort has led to nine Longhorns hauling in passes from Texas’ senior signal caller in each of the first two games, with five Longhorns having at least four receptions to their name early on.
Of that bunch, redshirt sophomore receiver Joshua Moore is beginning to separate himself as a bit of a security blanket for Ehlinger, and certainly as a big-play threat.
Though the quality of opponent warranted evaluating that performance with a grain of salt, Moore’s six-catch, 127-yard outing against UTEP, which began with a 78-yard catch and run touchdown on the first play from scrimmage, may have served as a significant early building block. Following Moore’s initial explosion for a touchdown, each of his next five
Texas Tech inducted former wide receiver Michael Crabtree into its Ring of Honor on Saturday, nearly 12 years after he tore the hearts out of the then-top ranked Texas with his game-winning touchdown catch. A few hours later, the Longhorns returned the favor. Down 56-41 with 3:13 to play, No. 8 Texas reeled off a 22-point comeback that will go down as one of the most incredible endings in the history of this Big 12 rivalry.
It began following a 75-yard SaRodorick Thompson touchdown run that, seemingly, put the Red Raiders in front for good. Texas Tech had been hanging around all day but took a 42-38 lead heading into the fourth quarter and then began pulling away.
Texas Tech, to its credit, was playing well on defense, too. Texas had just 50 yards of offense on 31 plays with three offensive points through the first 26 minutes of the