Texas Win in Ames & the Tech Game in Austin

Happy Thanksgiving Longhorn Fans!

No. 7 Texas Longhorns 26, Iowa State Cyclones 16

Coach Steve Sarkisian’s Longhorns dominated a good Iowa State team most of Saturday night.  The Cyclones didn’t have a great rushing game to begin with, but Texas completely suffocated what little they had, allowing just 9 net yards.  100 yards below their season average.  Iowa State dropped from 98th to 108th nationally, barely better than Baylor.  CJ Baxter pounded out 117 yards on 20 carries.  Jordan Whittington had a fantastic game. T’Vondre Sweat and Byron Murphy II were beasts.  Bert Auburn was perfect.  Quinn Ewers delivered a solid performance showing some great touch, especially this touchdown pass to Whittington.


The Monday Morning Highlights, on X and Instagram:


Texas still has to win Friday night to be assured of a spot in the Big 12 Championship Game.  In the meantime, as we enjoy Thanksgiving, we have the fun of watching the response to Cyclone Jarrod Hufford, and more importantly and much better, the joy of having a man like Steve Sarkisian as our head coach.  This clip from his Monday press conference, in response to Anwar Richardson’s question about creating the culture that Steve Sarkisian is helping build and grow here at The University.  This is 5 minutes long, but really worth your time.


Steve Sarkisian is a good man. He is building a great culture for a lot of reasons.

Short clip: https://x.com/HornSports/status/1727449356662341664?s=20

If you want to spend several minutes and watch the whole conversation.

The Bo Davis rant which I included in last week’s edition was there for a reason.  It marked a low point for Texas in Sark’s first year.  It provided what some call a “rock bottom” moment, from which a new person, a new organization, a new team, a new culture can begin anew.  Two years after that brutal loss in Iowa State in a 5-7 season to a hard fought win that was this program’s first 10 win regular season since the 2009 Mack Brown team that played for a national championship in the Rose Bowl.  My friend Cedric Golden wrote a nice piece on it, and Texas’ Winning Culture:


The responses to Jarrod Hufford are compiled below.  Poor kid got crushed.  Physically and online.

In the photo above, the guy on his knees beneath T’Vondre Sweat is Jarrod Hufford.  Enjoy the video:

© Aaron E. Martinez, Austin American-Statesman


Texas Tech Red Raiders vs. No. 7 Texas Longhorns

The Longhorns and Red Raiders meet for the 73rd and final time Friday night.  Texas leads the series 54-18.  This millennium, Texas has won 18 games, the South Plains Aggies just 5.  I will concede a couple of those were very painful losses.  Texas has won 4 of the last 5.

Texas Tech is 6-5 overall and 5-3 in conference.  Joey “Everything Runs Through Lubbock” McGuire is in his second year at Tech.  He was a very good high school coach by all accounts.

Last year after the questionable win over the Horns, Joey, in a comical state of excitement, said “everything runs through Lubbock”.  Here is what actually runs through Lubbock:  Interstate 27, which runs through in a sense, but ends in Lubbock, and then you can continue south on U.S. 87 to Tahoka.  To the north on I-27, New Deal, Abernathy, Hale Center, and Plainview.  U.S. 84 runs through Lubbock; it connects Shallowater to the northwest and Slaton to southeast.  U.S. 62 runs through Lubbock; it connects Wofforth to the southwest with Idalou to the northeast.  The BNSF railroad runs through Lubbock.

That’s what runs through Lubbock.  Not football in the Big 12 Conference.  Never has.  Probably never will.

Tech and Texas kick-off Friday night about 6:30 p.m.  The game will be broadcast on ABC, Dave Pasch, Dusty Dvoracek, and Tom Luginbill.  On the radio with the Voice of the Longhorns, Craig Way, Roger Wallace with analysis and commentary, and Will Matthews working the sidelines.  Listen to Craig, Roger, and Will on KBST 1490 AM in Big Spring, KKSA 1260 AM in San Angelo, and KBAT 99.9 FM in Midland.  On the Flagship in Austin – KVET 1300 AM & 103.1 FM and K2476EL 103.1 FM.  This week, on SiriusXM channel 109 or 199.  And you can always listen to Craig on the Longhorn app.

The Spanish Broadcast on the Longhorn Radio Network with Dr. Rubén Pizarro-Silva and Jesus Mendoza.  KTXX-HD2 or KZNX 1530 AM out of Creedmoor for the Spanish and online, I think.

Texas is favored by *14 (the line Tuesday night was 12.5).  The over/under is *53.5.

This is all about winning to go to Arlington, beating the South Plains Aggies, responding to the wildly inappropriate comments made by Big 12 Commissioner Brett Yormark earlier this year in Lubbock, and leaving Texas Tech in our rearview mirror and never looking back.  Next to “classless” in the dictionary, Brett Yormark.  Twerp.


Austin Horns Fan Dispatch

I am grateful for all the friends and “pen pals” I have made and maintained through the last couple of decades with this little project of mine.  The blessings I have received are a far greater return on my time investment than most would suspect.  Thanks to all of you.

Texas Longhorns

National rankings this week.  Pretty good.


The older I get, the more I understand and appreciate the importance of gratitude. Just remarkable that something as simple as gratitude, that humans apparently learn as toddlers, can be such a complex, deep, and vital part of one’s life as you age.  This year, I have come to appreciate that one of the steps in living life with an attitude of gratitude is slowing down, stopping to appreciate the “little things” in life.  One of my favorite verses is from Psalm 46:10 – “Be still, and know that I am God”.  It sounds simple, and in many ways it is.  Just stop.  Be still, be quiet, be with God.  I have found it is more than that.  When I am still, when I consciously try to shutout work and distractions, when I am on my walk and think about the simple beauties of His creation, I am more thankful.

I am blessed beyond measure with the fundamentals:  Faith, Family, Friends.  Those are the three pillars that sustain me spiritually and emotionally.  I try, not always successfully, to be constantly and consciously grateful for these blessings, and so many others.  But I fail.  I take these gifts for granted.  I will always to be better and do better.

One my Verses of the Day on Tuesday was First Thessalonians, 5:16-18:  “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”  Prayer works.  Thanks giving works.  Gratitude is healthy.

College Football Week 12

Quite a week.  Jim Harbaugh accepted the suspension and is not going to be on the sidelines for The Game.  He watched his Wolverines beat Maryland 31-24 on TV.  That victory gives Michigan its 1,000th game, the first to do so.  The Top 5 as of this week:

  • Michigan: 1,000 wins, 353 losses, 36 ties; .733 win percentage
  • Ohio State: 964 wins, 331 losses, 53 ties; .735 win percentage
  • Alabama: 963 wins, 336 losses, 43 ties; .734 win percentage
  • Texas: 946 wins, 391 losses, 33 ties; .703 win percentage
  • Notre Dame: 946 wins, 338 losses, 42 ties; .729 win percentage

Week 12 was “Cupcake Weekend” in the SEC West.  All went as planned for the most part.  Group of 5 schools dutifully showed up in Tuscaloosa, Oxford, Baton Rouge, Starkville, College Station, and Fayetteville, took their whipping, collected their fat check, and went home.  Except in Auburn.  The New Mexico State Aggies are having an unusually good year (they have a winning record), and they showed up at Auburn and won their first game against an SEC team in 28 tries.  Auburn paid New Mexico State $1.7 million to get spanked, 31-10.  I thought that was illegal in Alabama and most southern states.

The 93rd meeting between Southern Cal and UCLA didn’t go as planned either, at least not as planned by Lincoln Riley.  The Bruins beat the Trojans 38-20 to take the Victory Bell back to Westwood.

Texas Tech South Plains Aggies 2023

Behren Morton (No. 2, 6-2, 215 pound sophomore from Eastland) is the Tech quarterback, having taken over from Taylor Shough after he broke his leg.  Morton is 136/215 for 1,410 yards, 12 touchdowns, and 4 interceptions. Morton has been sacked 12 times. He’s rushed 38 times for 11 yards and 3 touchdowns.  He missed the BYU game.  176.3 yards per game, which puts him 10th in the conference.  His 63.3% completion percentage ranks him 6th in the Big 12.  His 133 rating would put him 11th in the conference.  Worth noting that his QB rating in Lubbock is 143.8, but on the road is 117.5.  In ESPN’s adjusted quarterback rating, Morton is 12th in the Big 12 and 80th nationally with a 56.4 QBR (Ewers is 2nd in the Big 12 and 16th nationally with a 78).

As an aside, Taylor Shough entered the portal on Sunday.  He posted a statement on X saying that he wished his time in Lubbock would have been different, but that “everything happens for a reason.”  [But why a Holiday Inn?]

The strength of the Tech offense is running back Tahj Brooks (No. 28, 5-10, 230 pound Senior from Manor).  Last week, he moved into second place in the conference with 122.6 yards per game and 1,348 yards rushing on 249 attempts.  That’s 38 more carries than Ollie Gordon II.  Brooks averages 5.41 yards per carry, and he has 9 touchdowns.  Not a big threat to catch the ball, with only 20 receptions for 70 yards.

Backing up Brooks is Cam’Ron Valdez (No. 0, 5-9, 205 pound sophomore from Rockdale).  Valdez has played in 8 games, not more than 6 carries in any one game.  233 yards on the year in 36 carries.  6.47 yards per attempt.  1 touchdown (a 41 yarder he broke against Houston in the fourth quarter with Tech up 42-28).

Myles Price (No. 1, 5-10, 190 pound senior) has 43 catches and 5 touchdowns to lead Tech, and that’s after missing the UCF game.  He is third with 410 yards, averages 9.5 ypc.  Price is also dangerous returning punts – 196 yards in 9 returns, for a 21.8 yard average.  Xavier White (No. 12, 6 foot, 195 pound super senior from Lubbock Monterey) leads the Sand Aggies with 470 yards on his 31 catches, for a whopping 15.2 ypc, with 1 touchdown.  He’s ranked No. 28 in the Big 12.  Jerand Bradley (No. 9, 6-5, 220 pound Sophomore from Frisco) has 431 yards on 36 receptions with 4 touchdowns, averaging 12 ypc.

Big tight end Mason Tharp (No. 80, 6-9, 270 pound junior from Klein) has 3 touchdowns in his 6 games, with 14 catches for 152 yards.  The other tight end is Baylor Cupp (No. 88, 6-6, 260 pound senior from Brock), who averages 1 catch per game but has 2 touchdowns.

The Red Raider defense is led by linebacker Ben Roberts (No. 13, 6-3, 230 pound RS freshman from Haslet) who has 87 tackles (47 solo), 5 TFL for 27 yards and half a sack, 1 interception, a QBH, and 2 forced fumbles.  He’s 4th in the Big 12 in tackles.   C.J. Baskerville (No. 9, 6-3, 215 pound junior DB) has 64 tackles (46 solo), 3.5 TFL for 13 yards, an interception, 2 QBH, and 5 pass break-ups.  Safety Dadrion Taylor-Demerson (No. 1, 5-11, 195 pound super senior from) has 62 tackles (48 solo), 4 interceptions, 2 QBH, and 5 pass break-ups (DTD has been hurt, not sure if he is playing).  Jessiah Pierre (No. 8, 6-2, 240 pound senior linebacker) has 53 tackles (28 solo).  Rayshad Williams leads Tech with 6 pass breakups.

Jaylon Hutchings (No. 95, 6 foor, 305 pound super senior defensive tackle from Forney) has 44 tackles (22 solo), 7.5 TFL for 18, 3.5 sacks for 19, and 2 QBH.  Hutchings is going to be a potential problem, assuming he is healthy.  No. 6 Myles Cole (6-6, 280 pound super senior outside linebacker) has 30 tackles (20 solo), 6.5 TFL for 40 and 3.5 sacks for 25.

The Tech field goal kicker is Gino Garcia, who is 14-19.  Perfect inside of 39, but 2 of 5 between 20 and 29 and 3 of 5 over 50.

Texas Stats

Quinn Ewers is still at or near the top of the Big 12 statistically.  Completion percentage of 70.3% is best in the league.  Second in yards per game at 279.2. Third in yards at 2.513, despite playing in 2 fewer games than the two ahead of him (Dillon Gabriel and Donovan Smith) and the three guys behind him.  Second in QB Rating at 161.97, behind Gabriel.  Ewers is top 20 nationally in several categories.  Not bad considering his injuries and some of the incredible seasons being logged by Daniels, Nix, Penix, and others.  We really need a 100% QE Friday night.

Bert Auburn is tied for 5th in the nation with 108 points (and 1st in Big 12).  He is 8th in the nation and 1st in the Big 12 in scoring with 9.8 points per game.  A weapon we should not hesitate to use.

Xavier Worthy is second in the Big 12 with 75.8 yards per game on 63 catches.  4 touchdowns.

Adonai Mitchell is eighth in the Big 12 with 60.8 yards per game, tied with Drake Stoops and Nic Anderson for most TD catches with 9.

Ja’Tavion Sanders is the fourth tight end in Longhorn history with 1,000 career receiving yards.  The last one was David Thomas, which also happened to be when we won a national championship.  Coincidence?  No.  It is not.  Sanders joins Thomas (1,367 yards), my friend and former law partner Pat Fitzgerald (1,106 yards), and Lawrence Sampleton (1,071 yards).  He’s ahead of Bo Scaife, Kerry Cash, and Jermichael Finley.  And as Mike Golic, Jr. observes, JT can block:


Our Super senior T’Vondre Sweat is simply one of the best to play at Texas.  He has  been named a semifinalist for both the Outland Trophy and Bednarik Award.

The Statistics
Texas Tech
Rushing Offense #40, #7 – 178.0 ypg #51, #8 – 170.9 ypg
Passing Offense #28, #3 – 276.3 ypg #58, #9 – 233.2 ypg
Total Offense #15, #4 – 454.3 ypg #53, #10 – 404.1 ypg
Scoring Offense #31, #3 – 32.9 ppg #60, #9 – 28.6 ppg
First Downs #41, #8 – 21.8/game #26, #6 – 22.5/game
Sacks Allowed #68, #11 – 22, 138 yards #64, #10 – 21, 150 yards
Tackles for Loss Allowed #48, #9 – 57, 227 yards #14, #1 – 44, 200 yards
Third Down Conversions #89, #12 – 36.73% #61, #8 – 39.88%
Fourth Down Conversions #35, #4 – 61.5% (16/26) #24, #3 – 64.7% (22/34)
Red Zone Attempts #49, #10 – 42 #39, #7 – 44
Red Zone Offense #100, #10 – 79% / 45% #68, #6 – 84% / 64%
Long Run Plays #74, #8 – 51/10, 19/20, 10/30, 5/40 #85, #11 – 48/10, 13/20, 8/30, 5/40
Long Pass Plays #16, #2 – 123/10, 42/20, 24/30, 10/40 #61, #8 – 97/10, 32/20, 17/30, 5/40

In long scrimmage plays, Texas ranks No. 26.  Tech is No. 77

Texas Tech
Rushing Defense #5, #1  – 82.7 ypg #74, #7 – 155.5 ypg
Passing Defense #113, #12 – 253.9 ypg #68, #5 – 226.5 ypg
Total Defense #38, #2 – 336.6 ypg #73, #6 – 382.0 ypg
Scoring Defense #16, #1 – 18.2 ppg #54, #6 – 24.3 ppg
First Downs Allowed #31, #1 – 17.8/game #85, #11 – 20.5/game
Sacks #30, #1 – 29, 128 yards #100, #10 – 19, 126 yards
Tackles for Loss #24, #2 – 75, 295 yards #102, #12 – 54, 229 yards
Third Down Conversions #1, #1 – 26.57% #107, 11 – 43.37%
Fourth Down Conversions #48, #5 – 45.8% (11/24) #54, #6 – 47.6% (10/21)
Red Zone Attempts #26, #3 – 31 #72, #8 – 40
Red Zone Defense* #5, #1 – 68% / 39% #83, #11 – 85% / 55%
Long Run Plays Allowed #6, #1 – 28/10, 6/20, 2/30, 2/40 #76, #8 – 54/10, 6/20, 3/30, 2/40
Long Pass Plays Allowed #99, #10 – 104/10, 36/20, 19/30, 9/40 #40, #2 – 87/10, 33/20, 17/30, 7/40

In Long Scrimmage Play defense, Texas is 1st in the Big 12 and 33rd  in the nation.  Tech is 4th in the Big 12 and 54th in the nation.

Texas Tech
Turnovers #48, #5  – 14 (7F, 7I) #94, #13 – 18 (4F, 14I)
Turnover Margin #31 – 18:14  +4 #115 – 12:18  -6
Penalties #71, #11 – 66, 524 yards #53, #8 – 62, 599 yards

*Based on total number of penalties.

Match-up Comparison

I have included a few of the national rankings in this comparison as I found them of particular interest.

Texas Offense
Texas Tech Defense
Rushing Offense – 178.0 ypg 155.5 ypg – Rushing Defense
Passing Offense – 276.3 ypg 226.5 ypg – Passing Defense
Total Offense – 454.3 ypg 382.0 ypg – Total Defense
Scoring Offense – 32.9 ppg 24.3 ppg – Scoring Defense
First Downs – 21.8/game 20.5/game – First Downs Allowed
3rd Down Offense – 36.73% 43.37% – 3rd Down Defense
4th Down Offense – 61.5% 47.6% – 4th Down Defense
Red Zone Offense – 79%/45% 85%/55% – Red Zone Defense
LRP – 51/10, 19/20, 10/30, 5/40 54/10, 6/20, 3/30, 2/40 – LRP Allowed
LPP – 123/10, 42/20, 24/30, 10/40 87/10, 33/20, 17/30, 7/40 – LPP Allowed


Texas Defense
Texas Tech Offense
#1 Rushing Defense – 82.7 ypg 170.9 ypg – Rushing Offense #51
Passing Defense – 253.9 ypg 233.2 ypg – Passing Offense
#15 Total Defense – 336.6 ypg 404.1 ypg – Total Offense #53
#16 Scoring Defense – 18.2 ppg 28.6 ppg – Scoring Offense #60
First Downs Allowed – 17.8/game 22.5/game – First Downs
#1 3rd Down Defense – 26.57% 39.88% – 3rd Down Offense #61
4th Down Defense – 45.8% 64.7% – 4th Down Offense
#5 Red Zone Defense – 68%/39% 84%/64% – Red Zone Offense
#6 LRP Allowed – 28/10, 6/20, 2/30, 2/40 48/10, 13/20, 8/30, 5/40 – LRP #85
LPP Allowed – 104/10, 36/20, 19/30, 9/40 97/10, 32/20, 17/30, 5/40 – LPP

Texas has allowed just 910 yards rushing (5th in nation).  Next closest in the Big 12 is Iowa State, who has allowed 1,370.  In rushing touchdowns allowed, Texas is #5, having allowed just 6 all season.  Tech only has 15 rushing touchdowns.

Common Opponents

Texas and Tech have played seven common opponents this season. The Horns are 7-0, the South Plains Aggies are 4-3.

Texas Tech
Wyoming – – 31-10 Wyoming  –  L – 35-33
Baylor – – 38-6 Baylor – W – 39-14
Kansas – – 40-14 Kansas – W – 16-13
Houston – – 31-24 Houston  –  W – 49-28
BYU – – 35-6 BYU – L – 27-14
K State – – 33-30 K State – L – 38-21
TCU– – 29-26 TCU – W – 35-28

Tech’s other games this season:

  • Lost to No. 13 Oregon, 38-30.
  • Beat Tarleton State 41-3
  • Lost to West Virginia in Morgantown, 20-13
  • Beat Central Florida 24-23

ESPN’s Match-Up Predictor gives Texas an 86.3% probability of victory.

TCT Thoughts

The Tech offense is not very good, or at least not consistently.  Coach Joey planned to continue an Air Raid style offense, and he had the quarterback to do that in Tyler Shough.  Shough broke his leg in the West Virginia game.  In comes second stringer Behren Morton, plays a couple of games.  Gets hurt playing Kansas State.  So Coach Joey turns to freshman Jake Strong.  Strong throws 1 touchdown and 3 interceptions against K State.  Same thing against BYU, and only completes 51.4% of his passes.  Morton gets better, and he is back in for the last 3 games (all Tech wins).

The problem for Tech is that Morton isn’t good enough (yet, perhaps) to run the fast paced Air Raid offense.  And he isn’t a threat to run when the opportunity presents itself. The Air Raid offense run tempo is effective with the right quarterback.  It results in more plays, more opportunities to get yards, more opportunities to score.  Against Kansas, for example, Morton was 19 of 25 for 176 yards and an interception.  That’s a QBR of 58.2.  By comparison, against the Jayhawks, Ewers was 25-35 for 325 with a TD and a pick.  His QBR was 85.3.

That’s the good news.  The bad news is that our pass defense is really not good.  It is, in my opinion, the poorest performing group on this Texas team, by a big margin.  Ranked #113 in the nation in yards per game, 70th in completion percentage (60.8%).  Rocco Becht threw for 323 yards and completed 75% of his passes last week.  Opposing receivers seem to have little difficulty finding wide gaps and big holes in our coverage on short and medium passes, especially on cuts and slants over the middle.  And, unfortunately, the one place where Behren Morton has the most success is his mid and short passes.  That, combined with the size of a few of his receivers – Jerand Bradley, 6-5, 220 and the tight-ends Tharp (6-9, 270) and Cupp (6-6, 260), may lead to a lot more offensive success passing the ball than one might expect.

One way for Texas to make sure that Morton doesn’t do well enough to hurt us is to pressure him.  A lot.  We need to get aggressive.

Ironically, the best path to victory is to make sure that Tech does have to rely on Morton to beat us by shutting down the running game.  Not an easy task facing the second best running back in the Big 12 in Tahj Brooks.  He leads the league now in missed tackles.

But we are going to have to limit Tahj Brooks and Tech running game.  We have done that quite successfully in most games, last weekend in Ames being a prime example.  Iowa State was not a great rushing team, but we held them to 9 yards rushing (23 gross).  Tahj is third in the nation in yards per game and yards.  Second in attempts with 22.64 rushes per game. The one “but” is that his yards per carry are average – his 5.41 ypc is 89th in the country and 13th in the league.  We have the best pair of defensive linemen in the country with Sweat & Murphy.  And other guys like Collins who are playing well.  Plus Ford, Hill, and Gbenda.  And Barryn Sorrell, Vernon Broughton, and Bush and Burke.  This defense has plenty of firepower to stop the Red Raider run game.  I am confident they will.  At least enough to win comfortably.

To do that, they are going to have to do what they have done often and well this season: dominate the line of scrimmage.  The Tech O line is good, but not great.  But the Tech linemen have always seemed to have a particular dislike for Texas and play pretty nasty.  Like all the teams we play, and especially this season, we are their biggest game.

On the other side of the ball, our solid Texas offense will face a less than stellar Tech defense.  One of their biggest weaknesses is third down defense, ranked 107th in the country (43.37%), which will hopefully translate to a big performance which is well above average in one of our worst offensive categories, third down conversions (89th, 36.73%).

The Tech run defense is middle of the pack.  After seeing how well Baxter and Blue performed last week, I am optimistic for another 100+ yards from Baxter on the ground (maybe 150+ if he can bust one, as he is capable of doing).  Texas will need to get a body on Tech linebacker Jacob Rodriguez, who is particularly good in run defense (ranked 2nd in Big 12 in run stop, per Texas Homer).

The key to a big Texas win will be Quinn.  Playing well in all aspects of the quarterback game, especially good reads, careful passes, and working to avoid sacks.  Tech plays a 3-3-5 scheme with a down linebacker.  They can drop 8 in coverage or rush 4, and they will blitz safeties and stunt linebackers.  Last week, 9 of Ewers’ 23 completions were to Blue and Baxter.  I am not sure how many of those were check-downs, but the offensive line needs to make sure Quinn has time to work his progressions and make that check-down throw if he needs to.  I am really hoping Ewers is back to 100% or close.  It would be really good if he is confident in tucking and running like he did earlier in the season, often for big gains.  I don’t want him to get hurt of course, but man we could use that flexibility this week I think.  The Red Raiders defend the pass well, but Quinn Ewers throws the ball well, and he has an army of quality receivers to throw that ball too.

I expect big games from Worthy, Whittington, Mitchell, and Sanders.  I don’t care what the guys are saying online about the Tech pass defense, I think the Longhorns are going to come out Friday night in DKR – Texas Memorial Stadium, and the only light show won’t be the fancy one CDC has in the stadium.  Ewers & Co. are going to light up the night in the Longhorn Air Attack.  I have Ewers throwing for 342 yards and 4 touchdowns.

I know it is not Sark’s way, but I hope this week he takes the points when he can and plays for field position some.  Bert Auburn is kicking the ball well. I just don’t think this Tech offense is good enough to produce long, sustained drives against this Texas defense.  We can win this game big without gambling too much.

The keys are pretty consistent game to game when you have a consistently good team like the Longhorns.  Execute on offense, tackle (really important with regard to Tahj), don’t commit costly penalties, stay out of third and long.  Most importantly, don’t turn the ball over.  It would be nice to force a few turnovers.  Morton has only thrown 4 interceptions (the turnover stats are a big skewed because of Jake Strong’s 6 picks).  This would be a good week for a pick 6.  It would really be cool to score a touchdown most of the time in the redzone.

TCT Prediction:  Texas Longhorns 42, Texas Tech Red Raiders 19.

Official Texas Preview:


Official Texas Game Notes:


Texas Homer:

Parker Fleming, @statsowar on X

Chancellor’s Spurs

We play for the Chancellor’s Spurs one last time, a trophy tradition started by John Montford, the Tech System’s first chancellor, in 1996.  Need to make sure these take up permanent residence at 210 West 7th Street.

Photo courtesy of Chancellor James. B. Milliken

Texas Longhorns vs. Texas Tech Red Raiders

The Winsipedia comparison:

If Texas Tech went undefeated for the next 27 years, and Texas didn’t win a single game in that time span, Tech could catch Texas in wins.  I will be 90 years old.  Which means if I lived to be 190, I wouldn’t see the Red Raiders overtake the Longhorns.

Nine of Tech’s conference championships were Border Conference, between 1937 and 1955.  In 1942, Texas Technical went 4-5-1, but the 4 wins were all in the Border Conference, and they were conference co-champions at 4-0.  Not sure why the little Border Conference didn’t all play each other, but I guess two teams went undefeated.  The Border Conference had an interesting history.

Tech joined the Southwest Conference in 1960.  Since 1960 (that is, in my lifetime), Tech has shared in two conference championships, both in the Southwest Conference:  1976 under Steve Sloan and in 1994 under Spike Dykes.  In 2008, they were co-champs of the Big 12 South, but lost the tie-breaker to Oklahoma and didn’t play in the championship game.

Thank You Texas Seniors

25 Longhorns will be honored Friday night.  I have re-ordered the official release list, and lumped the walk-ons together.  No offense.  With a few notes for some of my favorites.

  • Wide receiver Jordan Whittington. I have been a big J Whitt fan since he lead the Cuero Gobblers to a 40-28 win over Pleasant Grove and a 4A state championship with 334 rushing yards, 46 receiving, and 6 all-purpose touchdowns, and winning offensive and defensive MVP.  He only had 32 carries for 512 yards all season.  He has persevered through multiple injuries.  His season saving play against the Horned Frogs should be remembered for a long time.
  • Defensive tackle T’Vondre Sweat. What a man.  An incredible career.  Will pay more accolades before our bowl game when Sweat has collected his well-deserved post-season accolades and honors.  Should be All-American and get at least a couple of trophies.
  • Linebacker Jaylan Ford. Ford really became a leader and defensive anchor this year.  Through the game in Ames, Ford leads the Horns with 80 tackles, 10 for losses.
  • Defensive tackle Byron Murphy II. Big Number Ninety earned some money this year.  Played great ball.  Third on the team with 8 TFL, second with 5 sacks.  He is a true junior but draft eligible.  Wish he would come back and play a year in the SEC.
  • Right tackle Christian Jones. Someday, we will have readily obtainable and quotable stats for offensive lineman.  Anyway, 58 games in his 5 years.
  • Center Jake Majors. Redshirt Junior, so he could be back.
  • Defensive back Jahdae Barron
  • Defensive tackle Alfred Collins
  • Linebacker David Gbenda. A very pleasant surprise.  He has another year of eligibility.
  • Safety Jerrin Thompson. He has another year of eligibility.
  • Safety Jalen Catalon. He has another year of eligibility.  He would be good to have back.
  • Running back Keilan Robinson. Thanks Keilan.  Will always remember your comments in Tuscaloosa.  Has another year.  Would be cool to have his experience back if we have room.
  • Linebacker Jett Bush
  • Safety Kitan Crawford, He has another year of eligibility.
  • Offensive lineman Sawyer Goram-Welch
  • Defensive tackle Trill Carter
  • Defensive lineman Peter Mpagi
  • Wide receiver Isaiah Neyor. Neyor has another year of eligibility, but I would be shocked to see him back.
  • Punter Ryan Sanborn. Dude has really helped us this year.
  • Walk-ons: wide receiver Paxton Anderson; tight end Gus Asel; linebacker Tannahill Love; kicker Gabriel Lozano; tight end Patrick Bayouth

No. 7 Texas Longhorns 26, Iowa State Cyclones 16

Two important parts of Saturday night.  The best part was being included at the wedding of Kate Massa and Griffin Powell.  Claudia was a bridesmaid, and the event was filled with all of the great kids from her extended friend group.  A beautiful wedding and reception – big thanks to Lauris and Jay.  We had a wonderful time.  Congrats to Kate and Griffin.

I didn’t get to watch much of the first half, except for snippets on my phone.  I finally crumbled and joined a couple of dozen guys in the 19th Hole and saw most of the second half.  Jay, thanks for extending the bar tab!

The other part of course the game.  It was a fantastic road performance by the Longhorns.  Against a physical Iowa State team.  Some notes, as opposed to the full recap I usually do.

T’Vondre Sweat deflecting the pass on third and four was big.  And a sign of good things to come from Sweat in this game.

Next possession, a sack on third and 10, but ISU got the field goal.

The sack of Rocco by Sweat and Collins at the end of the first quarter was big.  You could see our defensive line really beginning to establish dominance.

The great play by Ewers to find Adonai Mitchell in the back of the endzone for a touchdown was really almost spectacular. Called back for a holding penalty.  Seven Points off the board.  Fortunately Auburn put 3 back up.  Tied at 3.

Texas got lucky with the missed field goal, but important to note that the good stop on third down before that, and getting the favorable ruling on review to say no first down, was huge.

Later in the quarter, Ewers had a really big 30 yard pass play to Worthy.  Then the end around with Worthy down inside the 10 yard line looked to be seeting up another score, but a good play by Jeremiah Cooper to dislodge the ball and give it back to Iowa State.  Redzone turnovers suck.

The Texas possession in the last 3 minutes of the half was really good.  A 13 yard Baxter run, a 17 yard completion to Sanders on third and 13, and then the big pass play to Whittington for 30 yards to get deep in ISU territory.  A false start and intentional grounding sent Texas backwards, but Bert Auburn salvaged it with the 50 yard field goal and gave the Horns some momentum.  Felt bigger than 6-3.

ISU got the ball to start the second half and the Texas defense forced the punt.

A good Longhorn drive that included a 21 yard Baxter run, a 19 yard completion to Worthy, 9 yards from Baxter, and 8 yards to Mitchell had Texas third and 1 at the ISU 23.  Then that incredible call and execution of Ewers to Whittington for the 23 yard touchdown pass to put Texas up 13-3 was one of the best, if not the best, offensive plays of the game.

Iowa State answered with a drive keyed by a perfect pass from Becht to Higgins for 33 yards.  Not great pass defense on the following touchdown pass either.  Texas defense got beat.  But an extraordinary play by Texas:  the Sweat block of the PAT, as T’Vondre basically climbed on top of Hufford to block.  Good hustle by Austin Jordan to scoop and run it 82 yards for the 2 points.  15-9 Texas.

ISU forced a three and out, and with a 6 point lead, Texas needed a defensive stop.  Jerrin Thompson delivered.  He picked off Becht on first down, right at the end of the third quarter.  Exceptionally good defensive back play.

Texas turned the turnover into points with another really great play call and execution.  31 yards to Gunnar Helm. Sark’s play calling was on fire and on target. 23-9 Texas, but a lot of time to play.

The biggest defensive lap of the game was on the next series, as the Cyclones had fourth and 1 on their own 34.  Brilliant, gutsy play call by Matt Campbell.  Our guys completely ignored the possibility of a pass play, selling out to stop the run, allowing Becht to dump it over the middle to big Easton Dean, who rumbled untouched 66 yards for a score.

Texas and Auburn answered with 42 yard field goal to give the Horns at 10 point lead.

Third and 8 with under 5 to play, and Texas sacked Becht.  On fourth down, Texas held.  With less than two minutes to play, Texas ran it up the gut to convert a fourth and 1 as Blue got the 2 yards Texas needed. Victory formation.  Eyes of Texas.   10-1.

I thought Sark called his best game since Alabama.  Ewers and the offense played exceptionally well, although getting 2 touchdowns called back on penalties is the kind of stuff that can easily lead to a tough loss, even against an inferior team.  We have to clean that up.

One other critical observation: the pass defense must improve.  Rocco Becht isn’t exactly an all-American caliber quarterback (no offense Rocco), and the kid lit Texas up, especially in the second half.  Over 200 yards and 13 of 14, although that does include the 66 yard touchdown to Dean.  Take that out, and 147 yards in a half isn’t horrible, but it isn’t good.

Those miscues notwithstanding, this game was, as so many have observed, a big culture win for the Longhorns in the Sarkisian Era.  No quit.  Lots of Texas Fight.

I sometimes get a kick out of looking at one a team’s season stats were and what they did against Texas. When it is in our favor, of course.  A few from last Saturday:

Iowa State Offense
Against Texas
Rushing Offense #98, #11 – 129.2 ypg 9 yards
Scoring Offense #78, #10 – 25.7 ppg 16 points
Sacks Allowed #7, #1 – 9, 46 yards 3 for 19
Third Down Conversions #73, #10 – 38.46% 3 of 11, 27.3%

Iowa State’s pass defense was 6th nationally allowing just a 53.6% completion percentage.  Ewers completed 69.7% of his passes.  That was after a rough start.  He was excellent for most of the game.

One of my keys to the game was that the Texas receivers had to help Ewers by getting to the ball and making plays.  They did.  Everyone contributed. Worthy had the most catches at 4. J Whitt and Mitchell had 3, and Helm and  Sanders each had 2.  What is remarkable was our running backs.  Baxter 5 catches and Blue 4.

David Gbenda played his best game of the season, confirmed statistically as he was the highest graded Power 5 linebacker for Week 12.

Another key was protecting ball.  Iowa State came in 1st in the Big 12 and 10th in the nation with a +9 turnover margin.  The Texas fumble hurt, but the Jerrin Thompson pick was big.  And we ended up even in turnovers

Extraordinary how close the advanced stats and metrics were for this game.  CFB Graphs had Texas winning 27.88 to 18.64.  BCf had Texas winning 23.7 to 15.4.

Highlights of Victory in Ames

From CFB on FOX  ~ 10 minutes

Every Play, from Texas Clips.

Full game in 54 minutes from @NashTalksTexas:


A 41 minute version:

The Jarrod Hufford Tales

Poor Jarrod


T’Vondre Sweat:  “9 rushing that’s tuff 😬”

Byron Murphy II:  “9 yards rushing … that’s all. Don’t write no check you can’t cash little guy”.

Xavier Worthy posted “Yea we got a ego fasho and we got culture and the talent too never be loud and wrong @JarrodHufford hope u had a good senior night though”.

After the game, Coach Sarkisian said he intentionally made Sweat and Murphy captains for the game.

“Making 90 and 93 captains was intentional.  You want to call out our culture, I wanted them to look those guys in the eyes at midfield.”

“I don’t know why you’d ever call them out … that’d be the last thing I’d do getting ready to play us. But that was their choice to call them out and to call out our culture, quite frankly, that’s how we took it.”

I am sure Coach Campbell uses this as a teachable moment for Mr. Hufford.

Juan Heisman Tailgate

We are back in action for the last tailgate party of our silver anniversary season.  Friday will be one our favorites – the Tamale and Frito Pie JHT Pachanga.  Tamales are handmade by Rose Marie Hagman’s sister.  We have traditional Frito Pie, and you are encouraged to do it the TCT Way:  Fritos, cheese, chili, jalapenos, chopped onions (in that order, bottom to top).  The hot chili melts the cheese and the gooey salty mess is probably one of my favorite Texas dishes.  Rose Marie also made salsa and queso.  We will have some sausage and hot dogs and other snacks.  Kelly and Rob Dunn are bringing several gallons of top shelf margaritas.  We will have plenty of Tito’s Handmade Vodka.  Lots of good cold beer. Most importantly, family and friends.  Hunter Wilcox, Judd Messer, and the rest of the Early Crew will be up before dawn Friday morning to make sure we get our spot and get things set up.  I plan to be there around 2:00 or 2:30, and we will have food out by 4:00.

One of the greatest blessings of our tailgate group is that it has been a place for my family and our friends to meet and enjoy so many great times over the years.  I have a couple of photos here, but I have started building the Juan Heisman Tailgate Photo Gallery on my website, and you can see a lot more pictures here:

Juan Heisman Tailgate 25th Anniversary – Austin Horns Fan Dispatch

TCT & Kathy

Mary Elizabeth & Pops

Kathryn, TCT, and Kathy (Notre Dame tailgate)

Charles, TCT, Kathy, Kathryn, Mark, Helen, & Rich Dean.

Claudia, Kathy, Peter, TCT with Lottie, Micah, Mary Elizabeth, and Parker.

Charles, Claudia, & TCT

Texas Tech University

Americans started settling West Texas in the 1880s, and they wanted a college.  Finally, in 1917, the Texas Legislature passed a bill to create a branch of Texas Agricultural & Mechanical College in Abilene.  There were some good old Texas political shenanigans, and that bill got repealed, and a new one passed in 1923.  This time, the Lege decided that the school would be something other than a true aggie branch.  So instead of agricultural and mechanical, it was Technological.  But, still aggie roots.  Thus South Plains Aggies.

Academic Rankings
Texas Tech
Forbes 31 152
THE | WSJ 60 401-500
U.S. News & World Report1 9 216
ARWU 24 107-127
Washington Monthly 87 197
ARWU 43 401-500
QS 58 801-850
THE 52 601-800
U.S. News & World Report 43 450
College Football Playoff Rankings

Texas still at No. 7.  Not unexpected.  With five undefeated teams, and only one of those guaranteed a loss, we will have to have a lot of things break our way. All that matters is for the Longhorns to keep winning and be in a position to take advantage of any of the teams ahead tripping.

AP & Coaches polls are at the end of the newsletter.

Big 12 Standings Week Thirteen

 No. 15 Texas Longhorns Basketball

The Horns dropped their first game of the season Monday night, a hard fought 81-71 loss to No. 5 and defending National Champion Connecticut in the “Saatva Empire Classic” championship game in Madison Square Garden.  Sunday, Texas beat Louisville 81-80 on a spectacular last second shot by Max Abmas:


Thanks to Judd Messer, I know that we pronounce Abmas as “ace-miss” because “Abmas” is the Anglicization of the German Aßmas.  That ß is a “scharfes S”, or sharp S.  Thus, the pronunciation.  ßimple.

Texas has a busy home schedule in December.  Come to The Moody Center and support Rodney Terry and this excellent Texas team:

  • Wyoming, Sunday November 26, 2:00 p.m.
  • Texas State, Thursday November 30, 8:00 p.m.
  • Houston Christian, Saturday December 9, 2:00 p.m.
  • Texas A&M Corpus Christi, Friday December 22, 2:00 p.m. Always fun to play the Island Aggies.
  • UNC Greensboro, Friday December 20, 7:00 p.m.
  • UT Arlington, New Year’s Day, TBA

In between, Texas has two huge road games:

The Horns travel to Milwaukee on December 6 to play Shaka Smart and the Marquette Golden Eagles.  Shaka’s team is 5-1 after a loss in the Maui finals Wednesday night to No. 2 Purdue.  The night before, Marquette beat Kansas, and Shaka and Bill Self had words.  Nearly threw hands.


Saturday, December 16 in Houston, Texas plays Louisiana State at the Toyota Center in Houston.   Need a good turnout from our Houston Horns!

 Washington & Lee University

Washington & Lee Generals 17, Lycoming Warriors 20

The Warriors stunned the Generals in the first ever Cape Charles Bowl.  Despite 299 yards rushing and 110 yards passing from Stephen Murrin, W&L couldn’t overcome a couple of critical fumbles.  The Generals had 409 yards of offense to Lycoming’s 332.  Jacob Romero rushed for 100 and Murrin added 97.  Marcus Payne 2 touchdowns on 7 carries for 23 yards.

The Generals conclude the 2023 campaign 8-3 and a second place finish in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference.

W&L placed several men on the All-ODAC team.  Special congratulations to Harrison Donovan, who was named to second team offense.  A great recognition for a great kid from 03 and a fine Austin High Maroon.  Tucker Jackobsen was, also an offensive lineman, was named first team.  Linebacker Will Mahmud named first team defense.  Also on first team offense:  running back Jacob Romero and tight end Evan Novak.  Second team defense:  Will Knight, D line, Hunter Hawk, linebacker, and Jack Johnson, defensive back.  QB Stephen Murrin (Fort Worth Country Day) and Marcus Payne, third team offense.  Charlie Fleming, DB, third team defense.

Great season gentlemen.

Other Stats, Ratings, and Rankings

Available Yards Percentage.  Net available yards percentage (NAY) is the difference between offensive available yards percentage (OAY) and opponent offensive available yards percentage (DAY) on non-garbage, regulation possessions in FBS vs. FBS games. Available yards percentage is calculated by dividing drive yards (measured from starting field position to ending field position) by available yards (measured from starting field position to end zone).

Texas No. 8:  0.210 No. 14:  0.576 No. 15:  0.366
Texas Tech No. 57:  0.028 No. 48:  0.491 No. 64:  0.463

BCF Toys – 2023 Available Yards Percentage

Net points per drive (NPD).  NPD is the difference between points scored per offensive drive (OPD) and points allowed per opponent offensive drive (DPD).

Texas No. 13: 1.29 No. 22:  2.82 No. 16:  1.53
Texas Tech No. 63: 0.08 No. 64:  2.18 No. 54: 2.10

BCF Toys – 2023 Points Per Drive

Net Yards Per Play (NPP).  Net yards per play (NPP) are the difference between drive yards per offensive play (OPP) and drive yards allowed per opponent offensive play (DPP) on non-garbage, regulation possessions in FBS vs. FBS games. Drive yards are calculated as the difference between starting field position and ending field position on offensive drives.

Texas No. 17:  1.33 No. 24:  6.55 No. 28:  5.22
Texas Tech No. 73:  -0.15 No. 74:  5.61 No. 67: 5.76

BCF Toys – 2023 Yards Per Play

My biggest takeaways from these stats this week:  Texas held pretty steady against a good Iowa State team.  Tech is way worse in these metrics than our last few opponents.

BCF’s Game Projection.  “Game Projections are calculated from current FEI ratings and include the projected win likelihood (PW), projected margin of victory (PM), projected points scored (PF) and allowed (PA), and projected total points scored (PT) for each FBS game.”

Projected Winner Projected Loser PW PM PF PA PT
Texas Texas Tech .866 16.2 26.6 10.4 37

Preview from Billy Shank on BurntOrangeNation.com:


Massey Ratings

Texas holds at No. 8 behind Ohio State, Michigan, Georgia, Washington, Oregon, Alabama, and Florida State.  The Land Thieves are No. 10, Ole Miss at 14.  Texas Technological is No. 41.

Massey Ratings – Rankings

Nate Manzo (@cfbNate on X).


ESPN College Football Power Index

Texas Tech is No. 32

ESPN SP+ from Bill Connelly

Texas Tech is No. 44.

College Football Week Thirteen

Thanksgiving brings us many of the great rivalries in college football.  A very few great interstate rivalries between historically powerful programs, like Michigan and The Ohio State University (obviously, some comparable rivalries are played earlier, like Texas-OU, Georgia-Florida, and Alabama-Tennessee).  Notre Dame and Stanford for the Legends Trophy.  Michigan State and Penn State play for the Land Grant Trophy.  But what fills the holiday weekend as the regular season comes to a close are the great intrastate rivalries:  Alabama-Auburn in the Iron Bowl, Ole Miss and Mississippi State in the Egg Bowl, Washington and Washington State for the Apple Cup, Florida-Florida State, and my favorite, Oregon and Oregon State playing for the Platypus Trophy.  Most of these rivalries, like the one which will be renewed next year in the Great State of Texas, are between the flagship academic public university and the state’s land-grant school.  The latter almost always “Agricultural & something” at some point and now usually just “State”.  Glad our Aggies kept Agricultural & Mechanical.

Big XII – Week Thirteen

My last edition of This Week in the Big XII, for football anyway.

Friday morning, Texas Christian plays the No. 13 Oklahoma Land Thieves at 11:00 a.m. on FOX.  Frogs have to win get bowl-eligible.  OU has to win to play for the conference title.  Land Thieves are favored by 10, over/under is 63.5.  BCf  Toys projection:

Projected Winner Projected Loser PW PM PF PA PT
Land Thieves Texas Christian .855 15.5 40.2 24.7 64.8

Houston is in Orlando to play Central Florida.  11:00 a.m. on FS1.  Cougars playing for pride at 4-7.  Golden Knights trying to get bowl eligible.  I heard some talking heads saying that this might become a good rivalry because of the space connection – Houston as home of the Johnson Space Center and Orlando with its proximity to Cape Canaveral and the Kennedy Space Center.  The Space Game.  UCF favored by 13.5, over/under is 61.5

Brigham Young at No. 20 Oklahoma State, 2:30 p.m. on ABC.  This will be a game for Horns fans to watch, I suspect, and the Cowboys are highly likely to be our opponents in the Big 12 Championship Game.  Okie A&M favored by 17, over/under is 54.5.

West Virginia at Baylor, 6:00 p.m. on FS1.  I am not making this up:  on ESPN it says “tickets as low as $2”.  Mountaineers favored by 9.5, over/under is 55.5.

Kansas at Cincinnati, 6:30 p.m. on ESPN2.  Jayhawks are 6 point road favorites.  Over/under is 58.5.  Tough second half of the season for the Jayhawks. Will be rooting for you against Cinci.

Iowa State at No. 19 Kansas State, 7:00 p.m. on FOX.  Wildcats favored by 10, over/under is 46.5.

Week Thirteen:  Service Academies

Friday, Air Force (8-3, 5-2) at Boise State (6-5, 5-2).  Broncos favored by 7.  Good luck to the Falcons.

Saturday, Navy (5-5, 4-3) at Southern Methodist (9-2, 7-0), 11:00 a.m. on ESPN2.  Mustangs are playing good football.  SMU favored by 18.

Army is on leave.

Top 25 – Week Thirteen

No. 12 Ole Miss (9-2, 5-2) and Mississippi State (5-6, 1-6) meet for the 120th time Thanksgiving night, 6:30 p.m. on ESPN.  The game is in Starkville.  The series began in 1901, and is a classic intrastate game between the state’s flagship public university and its land-grant school.  Ole Miss, the Harvard of the South in beautiful Oxford, and Mississippi Aggies.  The Rebels lead the series 64-46-6.  Ole Miss is favored by 10.5, over/under is 54.5.  Hotty Toddy!

BCf  Toys projection:

Projected Winner Projected Loser PW PM PF PA PT
Ole Miss Mississippi State .824 13.7 28.9 15.2 44.1


No. 17 Iowa at Nebraska, 11:00 a.m. on CBS.  Hawkeyes have the Big 10 West won.  Nebraska really needs this win.  Huskers favored by 2.5, over/under is 26.5.  GBR.

UTSA (8-3, 7-0) at No. 23 Tulane (10-1, 7-0), 2:30 p.m. on ABC.  Big game for Tulane, as it hopes to be the Group of 5 school with a shot at a New Year’s 6 Bowl.  Big game for the Roadrunners and Coach Traylor with a national broadcast.  Green Wave favored by 3.5, over/under Is 51.5.  Birds Up!

No. 9 Missouri (9-2, 5-2) at Arkansas (4-7, 1-6), 3:00 p.m. on CBS.  So distressing to see the Razorbacks with a chance to finished tied for last in the SEC West.  I don’t care much for Missouri, but I could not care less for Arkansas.  Go Tigers.  Mizzou favored by 9, over/under is 55.5.

No. 11 Penn State (9-2, 6-2) at Michigan State (4-7, 2-6).  6:30 p.m. on NBC.  The battle for the Land Grant Trophy is being played at Ford Field in Detroit.  PSU favored by 21, over/under is 42.5.  Tough one for Sparty, but maybe they can pull off the big upset.

No. 16 Oregon State (8-3, 5-3) at No. 6 Oregon (10-1, 7-1).  7:30 p.m. on FOX. A big game for Oregonians, a big game for Longhorns.  Go Beavers.  Ducks favored by 13.5, over/under is 62.5.


No. 2 Ohio State at No. 3 Michigan, 11:00 a.m. on FOX.  The Game, with both teams undefeated and vying for a spot in the Big 10 Championship Game and the College Football Playoffs.  Probably the biggest college football game this year is this one between the Buckeyes and that team up north, as the congenial Woody Hayes affectionately referred to the Wolverines.  If you are ever interested, or bored, the Wikipedia article on the rivalry is excellent.   This will be the 119th game in series that began in 1897.  Michigan leads 60-51-6.  This will be the 14th time the teams have met with both ranked in the Top 5.  Ohio State is 7-5-1 in those games.  Michigan favored by 3 at home in the Big House.  Over/under is 45.5.  Go Big Blue!

BCf  Toys projection:

Projected Winner Projected Loser PW PM PF PA PT
Michigan Ohio State .691 7.3 26.6 19.3 45.9

Kentucky at No. 10 Louisville.  11:00 a.m. on ABC in the battle for the Governor’s Cup.  Cardinals favored by 7.5, over/under is 50.5.  Pulling for a Kentucky upset in this one.

Texas Agricultural & Mechanical (7-4, 4-3) at No. 14 Louisiana State (8-3, 5-2), 11:00 a.m. on ESPN.  Since leaving for the SEC, this has been the Aggies’ rivalry and Thanksgiving game.  I went to look up the history, and the first “People also ask” on Google was “Has Texas A&M ever beat LSU?”.  They have been playing since 1899, and the Tigers lead the series 31-23-3.  LSU favored by 11.5, over/under is 68.5.

No. 8 Alabama (10-1, 7-0) at Auburn (6-5, 3-4), 2:30 p.m. on CBS.  The 88th edition of the Iron Bowl, a series the Crimson Tide leads 49-37-1.  Remarkably close when you think of how dominant a program Alabama has.  Tide favored by 14., over/under is 48.5.

BCf  Toys projection is odd. Suggests a defensive battle:

Projected Winner Projected Loser PW PM PF PA PT
Alabama Auburn .726 8.9 18.2 9.4 27.6

No. 15 Arizona (8-3, 6-2) at Arizona State (3-8, 2-6), 2:30 p.m. on ESPN.  Weird that this will be a Big 12 conference game next year.  Cats favored by 10.5, over/under is 50.5.

Vanderbilt (2-9) at No. 19 Tennessee (7-4), 2:30 p.m. on SEC Network.  118th meeting, first played in 1892.  Vols favored by 27.  Over/under is 57.5.

No. 25 Liberty (11-0) at UTEP (3-8), 2:30 p.m. on CBSSN.  Come on Miners.  Liberty favored by 16.5.

Washington State (5-6, 2-6) at No. 4 Washington (11-0, 8-0), 3:00 p.m. on FOX.  I am genuinely look forward to watching this Apple Cup.  116th meeting, first played in 1900, Huskies lead 75-33-6.  Washington has won 11 of the last 13.  Huskies favored by 16.5, over/under is 68.5.

No. 5 Florida State (11-0) at Florida (5-6), 6:00 p.m. on ESPN.  After the gruesome and season ending injury to Seminole quarterback Jordan Travis, the possibility of the Gators knocking the Noles from the ranks of the undefeated and out of the CFP is somewhat realistic.  I haven’t watched either team play much, so don’t know the likelihood, but Jordan was kicking butt.  The teams play game No. 77 in the series, vying for the Makala Trophy.  Gators lead 37-27-2.  Game first played in 1958.  More to the story another day.  ESPN gives FSU an 81.5% probability of winning.  Seminoles favored by 6.5 in The Swamp, over/under is 49.5.

No. 18 Notre Dame (8-3) at Leland Stanford Junior University (3-8).  6:00 p.m. on the PAC12 Network.  That’s just wrong.  The Legends Trophy at stake!  Game No. 37 in a series first contested in 1925.  Stanford is bad this year.  Irish favored by 26!

No. 1 Georgia (11-0) vs Georgia Tech (6-5), 6:30 p.m. on ABC.  Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate.  Georgia Tech won the first game in 1893 28-6.  The Bulldogs lead the series 70-41-5 and have won 5 in a row.  Bout to make it 5.  UGA favored by 24 over the Ramblin’ Wreck.

No. 24 Clemson (7-4) at South Carolina, 6:30 p.m. on SECN.  The Palmetto Bowl.  Tigers favored by 7.5.

North Carolina (8-3, 4-3) at No. 22 North Carolina State, 7:00 p.m. on ACC Network.  Game 113 in a rivalry first played in 1894.  Tarheels favored by 2.5.  Pulling for you Coach Brown.  Hope you get to light your tower blue.

Other Games of Interest – Week Thirteen


Memphis at Temple, 11:00 a.m. on ESPN.  Tigers favored by 11.


Miami Redhawks (9-2, 6-1) at Ball State Cardinals (4-7, 3-4), 11:00 a.m. on CBSSN.  Miami favored by 5.5.

Florida Atlantic at Rice, 12:00 noon, on ESPN+. Owls favored by 4.

UAB at North Texas, 1:00 p.m. on ESPN+.  Good luck Eric!.  UNT favored by 3.

Wisconsin at Minnesota, 2:30 p.m. on FS1.  The Badgers and the Gophers play for Paul Bunyan’s Axe, maybe my favorite trophy.  Wiscy favored by 2.5.

Liberty at UTEP, 2:30 p.m. on CBSSN.  Liberty undefeated.  Miners need to do the nation a favor and upset the flames.  Liberty favored by 16.5.

Virginia Tech at Virginia, 2:30 p.m. on ACCN.  Hokies and Hoos playing for the Commonwealth Cup in their 104th meeting.  The series began in 1895.  Hokies lead the series 60-38-5.  Been a tough run for the Wahoos.  In the ACC era, VT leads 17-1.  VPI favored by 3.  Would be great for the Cavaliers to win and end the Hokie season at 5-7.

California Berkeley vs. California Los Angeles, 9:30 p.m. on ESPN.  94th meeting, and the second longest uninterrupted rivalry in FBS (since 1933).  Bruins lead the Bears 57-34-1. UCLA favored by 9.5.

Big XII – Week Twelve

No. 14 Oklahoma got a score with less than 3 minutes left in the game to beat Brigham Young 31-24.  Cougars covered (line was Land Thieves by 24).

West Virginia 42-21 over Cincinnati.

Texas Christian 42-17 over Baylor.

No. 23 Oklahoma State 43-30 over Houston.  Cougars staying home for the holidays.  Maybe Tilman will host the team for a nice Christmas Party at the fabulous Golden Nugget Lake Charles.

Central Florida 23, Texas Tech 24.

No. 21 Kansas State 31-27 over No. 25 Kansas.  Jayhawks covered.

Week Twelve:  Service Academies

Army!  28-21 over the favored Chanticleers.  Impressive.  Black Knights are 5-6 after 3 straight wins.  Going to be a huge Army-Navy game.

Navy shutout East Carolina 10-0.  The Midshipmen are 5-5.

UNLV (8-2, 5-1) at Air Force (8-2, 5-1), 2:30 p.m. on CBSSN.  Battle for first place in the Mountain West.  Falcons favored by 3 over the Rebels.  Good luck Air Force.

Top 25 – Week Twelve

Georgia covers Tennessee 38-10.

Ohio State 37-3 over Minnesota.

Michigan gets out of Maryland with a 31-24 win.

Florida State 58-13 over North Alabama.

A real game in Oregon.  No. 5 Washington 22, No. 11 Oregon State 20.

No. 6 Oregon whipped Arizona State 49-13.

No. 8 Alabama with a 66-10 rout of Chattanooga.

Florida gave No. 9 Missouri a run for their money with 24 points in the second half, but Tigers win 33-31.

Louisvile 38, Miami (Florida) 31.

PSU 27, Rutgers 6.

Ole Miss stays undefeated in Oxford with a 35-3 win over Louisiana Monroe.

Louisiana State 56, Georgia State 14,

These Iowa games must be hard to watch.  Hawkeyes 15, Illini 13.

Arizona, wow.  Cats beat the Utes 42-18, dropping the once highly ranked Utes to 4-4 in the Pac 12 and out of the rankings.

Notre Dame 45-7 over Wake Forest.

Clemson hands the Tarheels their third loss of the season, 31-20.  Mack had it going for a while.

Tulane 24-8 over FAU.

Other Games of Interest – Week Twelve

UT San Antonio 49-21 over South Florida to stay perfect in the American. Birds Up!

Oh Colorado.  1-7 in the Pac 12.  Ugly.  Washington State rips the Buffs 56-14.

Texas Agricultural & Mechanical beats Abilene Christian 38-10.

Southern Methodist 38-34 over Memphis.  Tigers covered.

Rice beats Charlotte 28-7.  One more win and Rice will be bowling.

How ‘bout those Hoos!  Virginia beats Duke 30-27.  Tough year for the Cavaliers, but a couple of nice rivalry wins.

North Texas 35-28 over the Tulsa Hurricane.

Southern Cal is lucky this was their last game.  One more conference loss and they would have been .500 in their last Pac 12 season.  UCLA wins the Victory Bell with a 38-20 win over their cross-town rivals.

Cal won The Big Game, defeating the Cardinal of Leland Stanford Junior University 27-15.


One of Austin’s favorite musicians headlines Longhorn City Limits. The great Bob Schneider.

40 Dogs


Jim Nicar

UT Austin at 140:  How it started, how it’s going.

Follow Jim on X


Saying So Long to the Big 12

From Kyle Umlang on X, posting about a Wall Street Journal article on the Big 12’s Brand Value.

  • Added +$1,121,711,347 (Arizona, Arizona St, BYU, Cincinnati, Colorado, Houston, UCF, Utah)
  • Lost -$1,991,051,431 (Oklahoma, Texas)

$869.3 million net loss.  Brutal.  Will look at attendance maybe too.

Picture of the Week

I am particularly fond of this photo for several reasons.  First, you have to look closely to see that the angle is looking directly north up Colorado Street, with the Buford Tower in the foreground.  Second, the building on the right in front is 100 Congress.  My work home since May 1987.  My office is on the southwest corner, on the 11th floor, and in this photo.  I have been there since before the birth of any of my kids, have made countless friends at Small Craig and Jackson Walker, and have been blessed to work with dozens of wonderful clients.  In the background is the Frost Bank Tower, built by my friend Tim Hendricks, and home (of course) to Frost Bank in Austin, run by my best friend Tim Crowley.  The first tall building on the left (west side of Colorado) is 300 Colorado, developed and built by my good friends Don Reese and Jeremy Smitheal (and others) at Riverside Resources.

From JType’s Instagram account earlier this week.


God Bless Texas

God Bless America

 Tim Taylor

 Member, Football Writers Association of America

Tailgating before Home Football Games
The Juan Heisman Tailgate
Lot 38, East of Sid Richardson Hall.

The Austin Horns Fan Dispatch

© Timothy C. Taylor, Sr. 2023.  All Rights Reserved (as to original material).


On Twitter:  @tctayloratx

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and:  www.Facebook.com/Juan.Heisman

You can contact me by mail:
Tim Taylor
P.O. Box 5371
Austin, Texas  78763-5371