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Texas Longhorns - Offensive Preview

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The Texas Longhorns come to Lawrence Saturday with an inexperienced offensive line and plenty of questions.

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OFFENSE

The Texas Longhorn offense is in shambles at the moment. Suspensions have been raining down, their veteran QB has retired and the offensive line is piecework. Still, the Longhorns managed to put together a respectable showing two weeks ago against a decent UCLA defense. Tyrone Swoopes (So.) took over for David Ash at QB and threw for nearly 200 yards and 2 touchdowns at a 71% completion rate. Texas, (54th F/+) brings the 95th rated FEI offense to Lawrence looking to gain some traction.

The offensive line that lined up against UCLA had a total of 10 combined starts between them, and all five linemen started the previous week against BYU. Two linemen have been suspended, one lineman moved over from the defensive side of the ball in camp, and their veteran center with 39 career starts fractured his ankle earlier this season. The line is allowing a sack on 6.6% of offensive snaps (85th). The first key to victory for KU lies in their ability to exploit Texas’ O-line so look for Kansas to disguise blitzes and bring pressure often.

Texas has a respectable short range passing game, by necessity I’m sure. The receiving corps is let by two seniors, Shipley and Harris, who averaged over 10 yards per catch and saw 13 of 22 receptions against UCLA. Texas averages 5.7 yards per pass (103rd) and 3.5 yards per rush (83rd).

The offense has been extremely balanced running the ball 50% of the time with the carries split relatively evenly between Malcolm Brown (Sr.) and Johnathan Gray (Jr. ) who are averaging 4.4 yards per rush.

WHO TO WATCH

WR John Harris is having a breakout season averaging 13.0 yards/catch with 3 TD’s so far this year.  Look for Swoopes to target the former high school QB often.

KU DEFENSE VS. TEXAS OFFENSE GOALS

Opponent offensive efficiency – 5.0 yards/play before garbage time (250 yards on 50 plays, 300 yards on 60 plays, 350 yards on 70 plays).

Opponent turnovers – Force at least two turnovers in this contest.

Opponent redzone efficiency – Under 50% touchdowns on all redzone trips.

REVIEW OF CENTRAL MICHIGAN GOALS

Let's take a look back at the goals from last week's game. The game was over when Shepherd intercepted the pass from Cooper Rush with 1:28 seconds remaining in the 4th.

(Opponent offensive efficiency goal, 4.5 yards/play). Actual – 4.6 yards/play. Fail. Damn it, almost made it.

(Opponent turnover goal, at least 2). Actual – 3 takeaways. Pass. Two fumble recoveries and an interception makes fans happy.

(Opponent redzone efficiency, under 40% TD's)Actual – 50%. Fail. It should be noted that KU held CM to two trips into the redzone.

I'll check back next week to review the goals for Texas and preview West Virginia.