Open Post | Tuesday, January 5th

The Good, The Bad, The Ugly: Alamo Bowl Postgame
– D.T.

The Good …

–  Bijan Robinson has all of the signs of a future superstar. How does 6 touches for 105 yards and 2 touchdowns in the 1st Quarter sound?

– Alfred Collins made one of the most athletic plays that I’ve ever seen from a 300+ pounder on his one-handed interception of a Colorado screen pass in the 2nd Quarter of this ball game. He’s going to be a monster.

– I was impressed with the young guys up front and how they held up. 

– Andrej Karic is your Left Tackle for the foreseeable future.

– Jake Majors is your Center for the foreseeable future.

– I thought Tyler Johnson performed well in his first real collegiate game action at Right Guard in place of Denzel Okafor.

– DeMarvion Overshown will/should be considered a potential break out star for the 2021 season.

– Jaylan Ford played pretty well.

– Color me shocked that Casey Thompson started the Second Half. Pleasantly shocked.

– Casey Thompson looked gooooood.

-I appreciated the play-calling with the 2nd and 3rd-string Quarterbacks in the game. We got to see them play and not just hand the ball off.

– Targeting calls being rescinded upon review for Quarterback that slide between the Tackles pleases me.

– I think that Josh Moore has NFL talent. There is a reason that he was kept around for a year-long suspension last year. 

– OK, KelVontay Dixon. I see you.

– OK, Roschon Johnson, I see you.

– We got to get a glimpse of what Hudson Card looks like.

– Texas finishes the season 7-3, with their losses coming by a total of 13 points. The Longhorns will be ranked near the top-10 heading into 2021.

The Bad …

– If you get a chance to re-watch the game or have a DVR, go back and watch Vernon Broughton. Yikes.

– Four straight 3-and-outs in the 2nd Quarter.

– Bijan Robinson went missing for pretty much the entire 2nd Quarter and didn’t receive another touch after his monstrous start until late in the half. What the hell?

– Cameron Dicker misses every third kick you can pretty much take that to the bank.

– D’Shawn Jamison is still showing poor eye recognition in Zone Coverage in year 3. That either means he isn’t getting enough reps of it in practice or Texas just has undisciplined guys in their Secondary and has for a while now.

 Where was Jake Smith?

The Ugly …

– It’s still too early to give up on Christian Jones as a Redshirt Sophomore, but he was the weak link tonight in a unit full of guys that are younger than him.

– Sam went through yet another one of his lulls of inaccuracy on 3 consecutive possessions in the 2nd Quarter.

 Malcolm Epps in the run game at TE isn’t a pretty sight.

 It’s a shame that Sam Ehlinger’s career in a Texas uniform had to end the way that it did. No, I don’t think he’s back next season. It’s time to move on.


Sam Ehlinger | Heading to the Draft
– Charlie S

Texas QB Sam Ehlinger made it official today as he announced he will indeed be heading to the NFL Draft.

Ehlinger did have one year of eligibility left thanks to the NCAA granting an extra year to all athletes due to the COVID Pandemic.

Tremendous young man and we wish him nothing but the best as he leaves Austin!


Positional Report Card | Texas vs. Colorado | 2020 Alamo Bowl
– CJ Vogel

What a fun game that was, huh.


QUARTERBACK (A)

We’ll start with the captain Sam Ehlinger in what could possibly be his final game as a Texas Longhorn. The statsheet looks good for Ehlinger, who finished with 160 yards and touchdown on 10/16 passing. The 10.0 yards per attempt is a great sign for the gunslinger who unfortunately went down with a shoulder injury and missed the entire second half. Ehlinger did have a rough stretch where he went 3/6 for 10 yards on the three possessions following the two open touchdowns. Regardless, a good day.

Now let’s get onto Casey Thompson because oooooowweeee! That was exciting. Thompson was close to perfect in his 1.25 quarter of play. Thompson finished the evening with 170 yards on 8/10 passing and found the endzone 4 times. The deep ball was absolutely cooking for Thompson. The pass to Kelvontay Dixon that went 73-yards to the house is what this offense had been missing for most of the season. If there was one play to criticize, it was Thompson being late on a cross-field throw on a 10-yard sit that was almost a house call for the Colorado CB.

Hudson Card did not see much opportunity to shine, but you can tell the improv skills are absolutely there, specifically on the run-pass option where Card flicked it out to Epps for 20 yards. Special play there.

RUNNING BACK (A-)

He’s done it again! Freshman Bijan Robinson was named offensive MVP of the Alamo Bowl and he won it by the first play of the second half. Robinson rushed for 183 rushing yards on just ten carries. Of his ten carries, Robinson gained 20+ yards on four of his carries, including runs of 76 yards and 50 yards and had just one play result in a loss of yards. The game is really slowing down for Robinson who finished the season with six touchdowns in his final two games (24 touches).

On the other hand, Roschon Johnson was kind of bottled up for most of the night. I’ll touch on the TD run in a bit, but outside of his remarkable TD play, Johnson ended with 11 yards on 9 attempts. But back to that touchdown run, that was incredible running. Johnson forced three missed tackles before reaching the LOS then found his way to the endzone after 21 yards. I’ve said before that Johnson may be the toughest player on the team to bring to the ground, while that may not hold as much weight considering the production of Bijan lately, the point remains that Johnson is a very talented runner.

It was great seeing Gabriel Watson in the game as well. He finished the game with 29 yards on five carries. Congrats to him on making the jump to Texas and finishing his football career with a bowl victory.

WIDE RECEIVER / TIGHT END (B+)

Without Brennan Eagles coming into this game, Texas was going to need a guy to step up or reemerge into that No. 1 role. That man was Joshua Moore. The rollercoaster of a season for Moore ended on a high note as the Yoakum native hauled in two touchdown passes on five receptions that went for a game high 86 yards. Once again on display Tuesday evening was Moore’s ability to win jump balls in acrobatic fashion, crazy stuff.

I love the potential of Kelvontay Dixon in whatever Texas offense may present itself in 2021. His 73-yard touchdown had as much separation of any Texas WR in man-coverage that I can remember this season. I also felt like Dixon may have had a case on the 3rd down reception that was deemed incomplete after review. I’m buying his stock.

I don’t really understand this one, but Jake Smith saw just 20 snaps and did not see a single target. Weird.

It was clear Texas wanted to find ways to get Jordan Whittington the ball in space, though two of the three attempts went for zero or negative yards. But, on the bright side, he did haul in a 35-yard catch and run on an underneath crosser. Whittington with the ball in space is fun to watch.

Cade Brewer! Two huge catches for him resulted in a season high 59 yards for the senior tight end. Brewer had a great snag and showed some wiggle on the catch and run too. He’ll be back next year.

Malcolm Epps wow’ed me on a missile screen pass early on where he put a Colorado DB straight on his backside with ease. Epps also benefitted from the aforementioned improvisation from Hudson Card and netted 20 yards on an unofficial catch and run.

OFFENSIVE LINE (B)

It was a good, but not great day for the offensive line in my eyes. Obviously, coming into the evening, the eyes were going to be on the three new starters plugged into the line and for the most part, the group did well. Texas totaled 638 yards of offense and 55 points, so the room for criticism is pretty small. But, the group can certainly improve and it was great to get a glimpse of what the group can be capable of for next year.

At left tackle, Andrej Karic is going to be a stud. The streak of Sam Cosmi, Calvin Anderson and Connor Williams being a staple at LT will certainly be carried on by Karic. The true freshman did not allow a single pressure and graded out as the best pass blocker on the line by a significant margin. Karic will need to improve in the run game.

Moving inside, Junior Angilau came into the game as the most experienced of the group. Texas benefitted early by running behind Angilau and Karic. The Longhorns rushed for 121 yards on ten carries to either gap directly next to Angilau.

I was really excited to see Jake Majors in action. I’d argue Majors was better against Kansas State than against Colorado, but what we saw was certainly encouraging. Majors allowed one sack on the evening, but showed a great ability to reach the second level and move in space.

On the right side, Tyler Johnson made his first career start. Colorado was a great first game for Johnson to get his feet wet in college ball. While the run blocking certainly needs improvement, Johnson was superb in pass protection. The background as a left tackle really was on display for Johnson who did not allow a single pressure. Johnson needs to work on winning angles to cut off defenders when engaged in blocks.

There were still a few plays that made you scratch your head in regards to Christian Jones Tuesday night. Jones allowed a sack in the redzone and completely whiffed on his block on the Bijan screen-pass touchdown.


DEFENSIVE LINE (B-)

The defensive line unit was basically a brand new unit Tuesday night with opt-outs and a couple injuries sustained mid game. You could tell the group was full of newcomers, but like the offensive line, it was good to see what these guys are going to be capable of.

We’ll start with the other five-star freshman, Alfred Collins. His interception diving backwards after diagnosing a screen was one of the most impressive plays I’ve seen from a defensive lineman in years. That’s special special. Collins also delivered a big hit on the Colorado QB in the 1Q. If he wasn’t all-conference next year, I’d be surprised.

It was a tough evening for Vernon Broughton. Colorado found success up the middle the minute he came onto the field. Broughton was consistently driven backwards, though produced a highlight with a sack later on. A full offseason in the weight room for Broughton should work wonders for him.

I am not expecting Reese Leitao to start next fall, but I will be comfortable with whatever play time he sees. He’s certainly grown on me over the season. The converted tight end is still learning the tools of the trade on the defensive side of the ball, but he looked good. Leitao finished with three tackles, one for loss on the evening.

Texas will need to find someone to replace Jett Bush next year. The hustle and effort is there, but the production is not. Bush missed a team-high three tackles last night and struggled getting push on the edge.

T’Vondre Sweat went down with a shoulder sprain, but he recorded a tackle and quarterback pressure in his 20 snaps. Excited for him next fall. As for Keondre Coburn, the big man was pretty solid. Coburn recorded a batted pass and three tackles. Colorado had almost no success running the ball when Coburn was in.

I’m still not quite sure what to expect from Moro Ojomo in all honesty. He played much of the night at defensive end, though did not necessarily make much of an impact.

I wasn’t expecting Sawer Goram-Welch to see the field much this year, but the limited snaps we have seen of him this year has made me believe he will be a solid contributor during his time in Austin.

LINE BACKER (B+)

Last night was another special evening from Demarvion Overshown. The vision to move Overshown to linebacker is really paying off and will flourish next fall with more time to develop as a true linebacker. Agent 0 finished with an interception, fumble recovery, a sack and five tackles. He was everywhere. Though I am not quite sure how he wasn’t ejected for targeting.

For the first half, it was Jaylan Ford’s time to shine. Like we saw early in the year, the speed of the game got to many of the newcomers on the defense and Ford fell victim to that last night. Ford missed two tackles and struggled in recognition at times. But there were some good flashes too. I really do think Ford will be a player for this defense in the future. The athleticism is exciting.

I thought David Ghenda was superb. Gbenda saw just 25 snaps, but was able to rack up three tackles and two QB pressures in the process. Good stuff right there.

Juwan Mitchell saw just 28 snaps after missing the first half due to a targeting suspension. Mitchell returning in 2021 will be important for the Texas defense. He and Overshown should be the backbone of that defense.

SECONDARY  (B-)

We’ll start with the safeties. BJ Foster got the start back deep with the opt outs to Caden Sterns and Chris Brown. Foster played well. He allowed just one reception and recorded five tackles. I’m not sure how high of a ceiling we’ll see from Foster moving forward, but he’s certainly capable of starting for Texas back deep.

For the second consecutive game Jerrin Thompson got the start as well. I am a big believer in Thompson, but like Ford, he will need some time to get used to the speed of the game. Missed tackles were an issue against Kansas State and they popped up again against Colorado. Thompson also allowed a big reception on a corner route too. Despite that, he still finished with a pretty solid evening.

Josh Thompson made an incredible play on a deep pass in the 2nd quarter. Thompson climbed the ladder to deflect a pass that otherwise would have gone for 40+. Thompson did get called for a defensive holding however. Thompson’s counterpart D’Shawn Jamison had a solid outing as well. Jamison allowed just two receptions for 34 yards and recorded a pass breakup as well. The two of them returning is huge.

Onto the youngsters. Kitan Crawford got some run which was great to see. Unfortunately, what wasn’t great to see was Crawford trailing a wide open receiver down the field by three yards. Luckily the ball was overthrown, otherwise Colorado would have been playing the fight song.

Jahdae Barron got in late and was in great position to make a play on the ball, just never looked back. Instead Barron was called for DPI.

I still need to see more from Chris Adimora. I have said it for a number of weeks now. Maybe the addition of Darion Dunn will bump Adimora to safety? Maybe it will light a fire under his butt? Who knows, but Adimora allowed two receptions for 20 yards, had a penalty and was rather average in run support.


Sourced | A few Words on the Report in RE Odom & Muschamp
– Super K

As you all know, the Odom family is a big OK football family and some of our guys have had connections to them since their playing days.

Obviously folks around the Odom’s aren’t going to spill the beans on their negotiations but I have to say that I heard an interesting comment from someone close to the family that I thought was worth at least bringing to you all.

***First, let me say that we can confirm that there has been contact between Texas and Odom’s camp. We cannot confirm if an offer has been made.

***Now then, I found this interesting. Source close to Odom commenting to me on the report regarding Muschamp turning down the Texas job and Barry Odom being the next target said, “I don’t think he’d (Barry) turn it down but they might be using his name for leverage”.

I asked, “you mean to get Muschamp?” Source said, “Or whoever it is they really want”.

This was interesting because I had heard that behind the scenes there has been talk on the Texas side that offers ground out might have to increase. And, everybody knows Texas has a lot of money. So, while it is speculation, it’s worth considering that Texas may be aware that coaches could be using reports to up the offer and perhaps they’ve begun doing the same.

In other words, I’m not sure how much we take at face value hearing someone has turned down a Texas offer, just yet. Or if this is just negotiations in public.

***Also, I should note that all the other names we are hearing about or discussing Saban tree guys: Muschamp, Lupoi, Ansley, etc. If you bring in a guy like Odom you aren’t necessarily cutting ties with Saban tree guys but you are make a decision not to go with Saban’s defense and give yourself an easier path to poaching off previous Saban guys or even current ones.

***Lastly, I will say that if the pursuit of Odom is in fact genuine and an offer has been made (again, I can’t confirm anything more than contact right now) then it’s worth keeping in mind that my source is saying, “I don’t think he’d (Barry) would turn it down…”. That may not be dispositive but it’s the opinion of someone very close to Barry.


Notes From Fast 7v7 Tryouts in Houston
– CJ Vogel

I made it down to Houston yesterday for the Fast 7v7 tryouts at St. Pius High School. Fast 7v7 is known for having some of the best talent in the city and even around the country compete for them and this year it is no different. Guys like Jaylon Guilbeau, Jaydon Blue, Eric Hemphill, Chris Marshall, Jaiden Scott and Joshua Wiggins all suit up for Ro Simon Jr. and his team at Fast.

I’ll have a few takeaways below from watching and chatting with a number of these guys from yesterday, as well as in-depth posts on a number of Texas targets throughout the week.


*** First things first, I’ll start with current 2022 Texas commit Jaylon Guilbeau. The Port Arthur Memorial product was spectacular yesterday. Guilbeau has a very good frame for cornerback and has the competitive mindset needed at the position. Guilbeau was eager all day to go against the best WR on the field and found himself successful in a majority of his reps. If there was one knock to Guilbeau I found after watching him yesterday it would be he gets his eyes locked on the quarterback too long, too often. Guilbeau lost his man in coverage twice yesterday after taking his eyes off the WR and then being late to adjusting back to the receiver.

Guilbeau told me he hopes to get in contact with new Texas head coach Steve Sarkisian in the upcoming week or so.

*** Klein Cain running back Jaydon Blue is different. Blue is a top five running back nationally and certainly looked the part yesterday. I was amazed at Blue’s receiving skills. Blue was often in the slot throughout the afternoon and Moss’ed a number of defensive backs despite being just 5-foot-10-inches tall. Not to mention when he has the ball in his hands, good luck. Blue told me he ran a 10.5 in the 100m dash and has a laser verified 4.4 time in the 40-yard dash.

*** I was impressed with Brenham cornerback Eric Hemphill as well. Hemphill is on the shorter side of things at just 5-foot-9-inches, but his speed and awareness is something that is hard to ignore. On the recruiting side of things, Hemphill holds offers from just Kansas, Memphis and Illinois State, though the spring season should be a good opportunity for his stock to rise.

*** Back to the offensive side of the ball, Camarion Thornton is a guy that I expect to skyrocket in the rankings before next fall. Thornton attends Cathedral High School in Los Angeles, CA but was in Houston with the Fast team yesterday. All afternoon Thornton was beating DB’s with effortless speed and routes.

*** I talked a bit with Fort Bend Marshall wide receiver Chris Marshall who was offered by Texas on December 11. Marshall did not begin playing football until this past season and has already seen his stock explode. Marshall was not in action yesterday so I did not get a look at him, but a few seconds into his Hudl provide enough justice for him being a top dog in the state for 2022.

*** A name to store away for the future is Shadow Creek LB/S Scott Koumado. I was intrigued off the jump but Koumado who stands 6-feet-3-inches tall and 185 pounds a sophomore. Athleticism is tremendous here.


Jaydon Blue Eager to See What Steve Sarkisian Will Bring to Texas
– CJ Vogel

As I mentioned earlier, I was down in Houston yesterday for the Fast 7v7 tryouts coached by Ro Simon Jr. where a number of the best prospects in Houston gathered to put on a show. Among them was Klein Cain running back Jaydon Blue.

Blue was spectacular yesterday. The top five nationally ranked running back certainly looked the part yesterday. I was amazed at Blue’s receiving skills. Blue was often in the slot throughout the afternoon and Moss’ed a number of defensive backs despite being just 5-foot-10-inches tall. Not to mention when he has the ball in his hands, good luck. He told me afterwards he was timed at 10.4 in the 100m dash and has a laser verified 4.4 time in the 40-yard dash.

But onto his recruitment and where the Longhorns stand despite the coaching change.

“Recruiting is going good, everything slowed down during the season,” Blue said. “I talked to a few coaches during the season, but I wasn’t talking to that many schools. Now that the season is over, I’ll get back to talking to all the schools and stuff.”

Among Texas, Blue is hearing the most from Oklahoma, Alabama, Georgia and LSU. He told me he had picked Alabama to win the National title prior to the season, Ohio State opened his eyes in the CFP game against Clemson and he was somewhat surprised by LSU’s disappointing season in 2020.

Of course, Texas had been in communication with Blue prior to the decision to fire Tom Herman, which came as a surprise to Blue.

“When I first heard (of Herman’s firing) I was kind of sad. Tom Herman, he’s a good guy and was one of the coaches I was super close with. Him and Coach (Stan) Drayton, I talked to him a bunch too.”

“With the new coach coming in, and me being young, I have time to evaluate the coach and hopefully I can build a good relationship with him.”

Blue added that he has not previously talked with Steve Sarkisian before, however he hopes to hear from him in a few weeks.

In regards to the offense Steve Sarkisian is bringing with him to Austin, Blue said it is intriguing knowing how many guys Alabama puts into the league offensively.

“One of my biggest (factors) is I need coaches that I can trust so that they can help me get to the NFL. Alabama is one of those schools that puts backs into the league.”

Due to practice, Blue wasn’t able to get a good look at a many college games this season, though he was able to follow along with the Texas season a bit. I lightheartedly asked if he could see himself in a two back set with Bijan Robinson in the future to which he said, “That would be a good 1-2 punch. He’s a real good back, and he’s very strong. I think I got him with the speed, I think I can beat most running backs with speed. I went 10.4 last year (in the 100m dash), so my speed is there.”

One of the biggest decisions Steve Sarkisian will be making in the next few days is whether or not to retain RB coach Stan Drayton. It is a decision that Blue will certainly have his eyes on as the two have built a pretty good relationship already.

“It’d be very important because he would be the coach coaching me and I already have a relationship with him. So if he were to stay, then UT will still be one of the schools that I am looking at.”

When it comes down to it, Blue will have his choice of any school in the country off of his talent on the field and his work in the class room. He told me he wants to study mechanical engineering in college and will be doing his research in which universities line up with his aspirations on the field and in the mechanical engineering field.

“I want to be an engineer after football. So I’ll be looking at that, along with the coaches I can trust. Everything else will fall into place, I just want to make sure I pick the right school.”