Brian Harsin came to the 40 Acres with a lot of hype. Harsin was the mastermind behind the Boise State offense, an offense that allowed a mid major from a small market to consistently beat the big dogs, and make living in the top 10 as common in Boise as potatoes. Harsin’s calling card was the Fiesta Bowl against Oklahoma, where Harsin used his bag of tricks to beat OU in a college football classic. So when the Texas Longhorns were looking for a new offensive coordinator, who better than the man that beat Oklahoma on the big stage. Harsin left his home state for a chance to bring his high powered offense to the next level. Only 1 problem, Texas was coming off a 5-7 season, and had no clear cut QB. Last season Harsin turned the once high powered Horns into a power running team, with freshman backs Malcolm Brown and Joe Bergeron. Texas struggled at times on offense last season, and the biggest disappointment was the red river shootout against OU.
This year started out slow as well, with plenty of rushing attempts, but still not very strong with the passing game. Harsin wasn’t on the hot seat, but he wasn’t exactly the most popular man in Austin(that title still belongs to willie nelson). Then Saturday happened, and the year long building looks like it’s starting to pay off. Texas traveled to SEC country, to the grove to take on Ole Miss. Ole Miss isn’t an SEC powerhouse, but it was a nice early road test for this young horns team. Harsin’s offense had been very basic and vanilla against Wyoming and New Mexico, but Harsin unleashed his full Boise state type offense on the rebels.
Texas scored 66 points in their route of Ole Miss, in front of one of the biggest crowds in Mississippi history. Texas established the run, like they had in every Harsin ran game at UT, but this time Harsin used the run to set up the pass. And UT didn’t just pass, they threw deep down field. They were able to throw so much, that Quarterback David Ash won Big 12 Offensive Player of the week, and the Davey O’Brien QB of the week.
Many were surprised on Saturday, not only with the 66 points, but with the strong game by Ash. Many in the media felt Ash would be a “bus driver”, basically someone to hand the ball off to the talented running backs. But those that remember why Harsin was hired shouldn’t be surprised. Harsin’s Boise State teams often ran the ball to set up the deep ball. Harsin has used his stable of talented playmakers to hit the opposing defense at all phases of the game. Brown and Bergeron run up the middle, DJ Monroe, Daje Johnson, and Marquise Goodwin hit the corners to spread defenses sideline to sideline. And now David Ash uses his big arm to throw the ball deep, which is sure to keep Big 12 defenses from loading the box. Now, the Horns will still run the ball as much as possible, but now Texas will use the run game to torch defenses, just like Harsin likes it. Time will tell if the UT offense will continue to shine, but if it does, Harsin just might challenge the red headed stranger as the most popular guy in Austin.
As the Yankees free fall, and Angels try to get their money’s worth, and the Tigers and White Sox battle for the AL Central, the Rangers have somehow continued their steady run as the AL’s best. New teams like the Orioles and A’s are trying to crash the post season party, as old stalwarts the Yankees and Angels are holding on for dear life. The Texas Rangers still own the American League’s best record, and have bounced back after a bad July. Adrian Beltre has become a legitimate MVP candidate, and has sparked the Rangers offense. Minor leaguer and top prospect Jurkison Profar has added a spark, and even Mr Ranger Michael Young has come on of late. Josh Hamilton still leads the American League in home runs, and all in all the Rangers are winning the games they’re suppose to. Now don’t pencil the Rangers in yet as the AL West champs . The Rangers hot streak came just in time, since they still haven’t separated themselves from the A’s, Oakland is only 3 games back and are on fire. So even with the AL’s best record, the Rangers still have to play the next 3 weeks as if their playoff lives depend on it, because that’s exactly the case. Even with the tight pennant race, don’t be surprised if Ron Washington starts resting players down the stretch, as he’s done all season. The Rangers could very well be the deepest team in baseball, and will look to use this depth to stay fresh for another long post season run. I know its football season here in Texas, but the Rangers are ready for another World Series run, so while you wait for your UT or TCU game on Saturdays, or your Cowboys game on Sundays, take a peak at the best team in Texas, your Rangers.
It was 11 years this week that the horrible attacks on America happened, September 11, 2001. For many of us, it was a time for mourning, reflecting, and for some, a time for service. Many young Americans signed up for the military, proudly serving and fighting in Afghanistan, then Iraq. One of those Americans was Nate Boyer, who ended up being a Green Beret for the US Army. Nate Boyer says during his tour of duty, he and many other solders followed football. Boyer told Kaylee Hartung of the Longhorn Network after Saturday’s game that Texas was the overwhelming favorite team of the military. While he was in the military, Boyer saw UT win a national championship in dramatic fashion. At that point Nate Boyer made a decision, a decision to enroll at the University of Texas and walk on the football team. Boyer had never played football, since his high school at Dublin California didn’t have a team. Boyer figured he could learn the game, even at the age of 30. Boyer was on the scout team, basically helping the horns get ready for their next opponent. Nate Boyer wanted to be on the team, and decided long snapper was his best chance. Boyer noticed last season that the long snapper was a senior, and would be graduating. Boyer then started practicing long snapper, saying he snapped a football 100 times a day. A media member asked Boyer why he thought he could just learn football, and more specifically, learn to be a collegiate level long snapper. His response, “When I joined the military, I had never shot a gun and that’s something I figured out. I just knew it’s possible to do anything in this life as long as you believe in yourself and work harder than everybody else around you,” Boyer said. “My time in the military helped with that belief. I could just figure it (football) out.” His determination paid off, as he made the team. Before the 1st game, Coach Mack Brown announced that Nate Boyer had earned a scholarship. If you don’t think that’s a big deal, you don’t truly understand college football. Every team is allowed 85 scholarships, and these scholarships are so important that teams in the SEC cut players to make room for new ones. So for Boyer to earn one of these coveted scholarships is a huge accomplishment, especially for a 31 year old man that never played football before. Nate Boyer’s journey to the University of Texas is an amazing one, it started on September 11, 2001 when he decided to answer the call and be a hero. Now he’s a Longhorn, but more than that, he’s someone these young Longhorns can look up too. Practices in this Texas heat don’t seem so tough, when your former teammate was once a Green Beret at war.
Week 2 is over, and College football saw a lot more shake up. Here’s how the state of Texas was affected after week 2:
New conference, new coach, same Aggies. Another opportunity for the Aggies to showcase their program on the national stage, and again they blew it. They’ll have plenty of more chances to make a statement.
The Longhorns still didn’t dominate, but they still won big. Horns travel to ole miss this week, I think we all learn a lot more about UT.
Rice bounce backed nicely, beating Kansas.
TCU finally started their season, time will tell if they’re ready for a full big 12 schedule.
Texas Tech did what they were suppose too, beat up on Texas State.
UTEP continued their tough schedule, this time losing to Ole Miss.
UTSA is now 2-0, we’ll see if this can last in the WAC.
Houston lost again, looks like the Cougars have officially lost all momentum Coach Briles and Coach Sumlin built.