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The Texas 10: Week 9

10/28/2012

Each week, HornsNation will rank Texas' top 10 performers of the season up to this point:

1. DE Alex Okafor: Kansas ran right at him all day long and Okafor racked up 13 tackles -- including 11 solo stops -- and forced a fumble. Not hard to see how important he is to this defense with Jackson Jeffcoat out, and nobody was louder than Okafor on the sidelines when UT came out flat once again.

2. RB Johnathan Gray: Undisputably the best player on the field for Texas’ offense against Kansas. Gray recorded his first career 100-yard game with 108 yards on 18 carries. His 31-yard run set up UT’s opening score. Since Malcolm Brown went down, Gray has averaged a steady 5.5 yards per carry.

3. CB Quandre Diggs : Two tackles for loss, including a 13-yard sack, and more good pass coverage. Week after week of evidence tells us Diggs is by far the best defensive back on this team, though with only three interceptions he doesn’t get as much pub as the other elite Big 12 corners.

4. QB Case McCoy: Having two quarterbacks finally paid off against Kansas. McCoy led two scoring drives and provided leadership in a time of crisis. Texas is capable of losing any of these remaining five games. We may be seeing more of McCoy if the Longhorns keep coming out flat.

5. S Kenny Vaccaro: An up-and-down game for Vaccaro, who was not very good in the first half but much improved in the second. He still finished second on the team with 10 tackles, but he’ll have to be better against Texas Tech.

6. QB David Ash: Hard to know where to rank him this week. Ash’s issues against Kansas were reminiscent of his struggles as a true freshman, though Texas’ offensive game plan didn’t do him many favors. He’s still the starter and the guy who gives the Longhorns the best chance to win.

7. WR Jaxon Shipley: Shipley finally got back in the mix in the Texas passing game with six catches, none bigger than on 4th and 6 in the game's final two minutes. Shipley's 18-yard reception over the middle kept the drive, the game and perhaps a whole lot more alive.

8. WR Mike Davis: No way Texas completes this comeback without Davis’ stunning 39-yard reception along the sidelines on the game-winning drive. Ash struggled to get him the ball the rest of the game, including on a screen pass to Davis that was tipped and picked.

9. TE D.J. Grant: This spot should probably go to a defender, but few really stood out amid another game full of missed tackles and poor play. Texas settles for a field goal and overtime if Grant doesn’t catch his last-second touchdown pass on third down. You just wonder why Grant isn’t a bigger factor in the offense most weeks.

10. P Alex King: King was solid on his five punts, averaging 42.6 per boot. He came close to getting blocked a time or two, and that would’ve seriously swung the game. But King got the job done and would rank No. 10 nationally in punting average if he had enough attempts.