Longhorns Mid-Season Report
August 31, I gave you my Longhorns Season Predictions. Let's review where this team has been offensively and defensively and then let's look where I THINK they might be going.
22nd in PPG- 38.3
40th in yards passing PG- 267.3
47th in yards rushing PG= 178.0
36th in total yards PG- 445.3
I will give the offense a grade of B
BUT I want you fully comprehend THIS
61% of their passes have been thrown by the backup QB
I went through the AP top 25- Alabama is second highest percent of passes by the backup QB at 25%.
Casual fans and analysts have no idea about our Longhorns because most have not seen the REAL LONGHORNS yet
22nd in PPG allowed- 17.8
48th in yards passing allowed PG- 212.0
44th in yards rushing allowed PG= 126.2
33th in total yards allowed PG- 338.2
I will give the defense a grade of B
Relative to expectations the Horns defense would grade an A
It is interesting how well the offense scores and the defense prevents scores vs. the yards for both.
The Longhorns are YOUNG, especially on offense. Freshman have played a lot. according to the Ourlads Texas Depth chart
- The offense has EIGHT FRESHMAN on the two deep
- The offense has EIGHT SOPHOMORES on the two deep
- 16 out of 22 spots are freshman or sophomores! Are you kidding!!
- The defense has FOUR FRESHMAN on the second string
- The defense has FOUR SOPHOMORES on the two deep
- There are nine more freshman and sophomores listed on the depth chart ready to play too
The point of this is that these younger players are likely to get even better this season.
Let me give you a somewhat shocking table. This comes from sports-reference.com. It is based on SRS (Defined by them as Simple Rating System; a rating that takes into account average point differential and strength of schedule. The rating is denominated in points above/below average, where zero is average.)
I included all of the AP top 25 team in this table.
THE LONGHORNS ARE FOURTH. YES, FOLKS, THE LONGHORNS ARE RATED FOURTH BY THIS METHOD.
The Longhorns are ALSO FOURTH by ESPN's College Football Power Index
The Longhorns are ALSO FOURTH in Josh Pate's Week 7 JP Poll.
All of these methods are POWER INDEX systems. They are NOT the rankings you are used to looking at. They are meant to be PREDICTIVE.
The future is bright.
How did the games go so far compared to what I expected?
ULM, UTSA, and West Virginia went very close or EXACTLY as I predicted.
The Alabama game was shockingly close and if Ewers had not gotten hurt, Texas might have won.
The Tech game was a frustrating Lubbock game. The good news is Texas won't be back.
The Red River Shootout was as therapeutic as the Lubbock game was frustrating. Longhorns fans will be talking about the Red River Shutout for a generation.
So in short I predicted the Longhorns would be 5-1 at this point in the season. They are 4-2 and a few plays from being 6-0. The truth is I feel more confident in this team than I expected to be.
Ewers has been BETTER as a red shirt freshman than even the most confident could have predicted. His 173.5 QBR would be 12th best and he seems to be getting better.
Where could this all go? What COULD the Longhorns do the rest of the season? Could they finish the 9-3 I predicted? I think so. Here is how I expect it to play out. I have revised my predictions in the last column.
This could lead to a VERY interesting scenario over the next rest of the season.
Here are the Big 12 standings before week six.
Many of the top teams will play each other over the next few weeks.
Let's look in detail at the schedule for the six teams with zero or one conference loss.
I looked at these six weeks using the ESPN FPI predictor and I have given you MY expected outcomes.
For the FPI prediction system
- A winning team is in bold font
- A losing team is underlined.
For the LarryTheGM predictions
- A winning team is in Green
- A losing team is in Red
So what does the conference standing look like for these teams if the predictions are true?
In both models the Longhorns will be playing OSU for the Big 12 championship.
Not bad for for a one year improvement.
Well today we start the second half. Let's see if the revenge tour stays on track.
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It has been a difficult decade for Texas Longhorns fans. Every year I believe the team will be better than they turn out to be. Last year, I predicted they would shock the world and finish 10-2. I knew that prediction was based on a lot of hope and not a data. This year might be the same.
That is the nature of much of what I will write here about the Longhorns. This is a FAN space more than a DATA space for UT. I admit it. I bleed burnt orange and my dad's Silver Spurs are on the bookshelf behind me. I am the middle generation of what is now three Longhorns graduates. I suspect my daughter will someday have a child in Austin too. That is just how it is in this household. What is different here is that we are real about who we are. Ok that's the disclaimer.