Sunday, November 17, 2013
What we learned: Week 12
By Max Olson
AUSTIN, Texas -- Texas' six-game win streak is over after No. 12 Oklahoma State handed the Longhorns a 38-13 loss on Saturday afternoon. Here are three big takeaways from the loss:
1. Mistakes proved costly in big game: It's not just the trio of Case McCoy interceptions. This game is not all on him. There were plenty of miscues to go around: Adrian Phillips' dropped INT-turned TD. The return of bad read-option defense. The horrific returns, especially a botched reverse that put Texas at its own 6 to start the third quarter. Bad special teams play all around, really, outside of Anthony Fera. You can't do that kind of stuff against a top-15 team and expect a close contest, no matter how many games you've recently won.
2. The Big 12 title picture: If Baylor beats Oklahoma State next weekend in Stillwater, Texas still can win the conference with a win over Texas Tech and a head-to-head win over Baylor on Dec. 7. If Oklahoma State knocks off the Bears, we have a three-way tie in the standings. Texas would then need to run the table and plus an Oklahoma road win over OSU in the Bedlam game. Simple enough, right? Let's get even simpler: None of these scenarios matter if Texas can't defeat a Texas Tech team that has lost four in a row.
3. Is Swoopes' usage really an issue? Freshman quarterback Tyrone Swoopes had his best game yet: 4-for-7 passing, 17 passing yards, 22 rushing yards. He played one series. Evidently that's causing some factions of the Longhorn fan base to declare he must play more. Based on what? McCoy has struggled but Swoopes hasn't shown much so far, and that's to be expected from a true freshman with little experience. Maybe it's time to try a run package with him, but you can't ask for a whole lot more. He's not ready to run the full offense and win games on raw talent. And right now, all Texas cares about is winning.