Halftime analysis: Texas 7, Cal 3

December, 28, 2011
12/28/11
8:53
PM ET
Turning point: After only picking up one first down through the first quarter and a half of the game, Texas got the ball with great field position inside the Cal 45 and immediately went to work. First Jaxon Shipley grabbed a ball at the Cal 34. Quarterback David Ash then found Blaine Irby to put the Longhorns at the 4-yard line. From there, co-offensive coordinator Bryan Harsin dialed up a trick play as the ball found its way into Shipley's hands. The wide receiver threw it back to Ash for a touchdown to put Texas up 7-3.

Stat of the half: The Texas defense forced two Cal turnovers, one at the Bears' 19-yard line, but the Texas offense failed to convert either into points. Overall the Texas defense limited Cal to 9 rushing yards and 63 passing yards. Cal was able to go 40 yards on its first drive and knock in a 47-yard field goal. But from that point on, the Texas defense was dominant.

What Texas needs to do: The Longhorns need to continue to try the run game and put Ash in situations where he can be successful. The freshman has been backed up in third and long on several occasions and has not fared well. If the Texas offense can get more short yardage situations on second and third down it might be able to take more chances. As it is, Texas has not had a turnover in the first half.

What Cal needs to do: Cal has one of the top receivers in the nation with Keenan Allen. But Texas' defense, particularly Kenny Vaccaro, has been able to keep Allen under wraps. Allen, who has 1,261 receiving yards during the regular season, needs to have the ball in his hands. Cal has to figure out a way for quarterback Zach Maynard to roll away from the pressure and find Allen.

Carter Strickland | email

Reporter, HornsNation

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