(Editors note: The following post is written and posted by our newest writer, Joe. So be..."/> (Editors note: The following post is written and posted by our newest writer, Joe. So be..."/>

Texas Longhorns Spring Game Review


(Editors note: The following post is written and posted by our newest writer, Joe. So be a dear and welcome him to our staff and enjoy this first hand account of a Texas Spring Game review)

With the Texas Longhorn spring game coming & then going many questions still are clearly apparent for fans this year. Many analysts have broken down the play of the four QBs vying for pecking order on the depth chart & many more bloggers than analysts having analyzed the very vanilla more run oriented play calling in an attempt to make an accurate record prediction on the Horns 2011 season. Even without top RB recruit Malcolm Brown not due in Austin until the fall an emphasis on the run game was grossly apparent. RB Fozzy Whitaker was hurt in the early stages of the spring game which is really a surprise to no one at this point in his college career.

With all the talk of Case McCoy’s 9-11 performance for 124 yards & lone one TD toss. His subpar footwork is the real story. McCoy constantly threw off his back foot while at times being under no pressure at all. However Case did actually led both first & second teams to TD drives where as Garrett Gilberts inability to take a firm grasp of the job that’s been gift wrapped & dropped squarely in his lap was all to evident. Gilbert finished the day 8-15 for 76 yards & an INT.

One of a few bright spots from the very first kickoff was the return game for Texas, but it was hard to tell if it was due to poor kickoff coverage or the superb skill of returning players like D.J. Monroe who without question has speed to burn. UT fans have to have their fingers crossed in hopes of not having to endure as many kickoff returns as they did last year & making good use of Monroe’s speed elsewhere on the field.

Defensively, it’s hard to take much away from the spring game knowing that coach Mack Brown admitted that new DC Manny Diaz ran only one coverage all afternoon. With Diaz’s exotic blitz packages being an almost every down routine last year in the SEC it’s obvious that the young up & coming DC is still installing defense. Alex Okafor, who started 8 games last year at DT despite weighing only 258 lbs., has made the move back to DE where he was credited Sunday with 4 sacks. Sacks that came from the lips of quick whistling referees clearly instructed to be overly cautious when defensive players came within arms length of the Texas QBs. However Okafor did show an explosive burst off the line but mainly against walk-on O-lineman due to many spring injuries beset upon returning starter. Fifth year senior Trey Allen did look to be solid. This defense can go as far as junior Alex Okafor will take them. Manny Diaz knows this whole heartily. The junior DE is ranked 9th out of 146 college football DE’s by NFL Draft Scout & could easily end up being a top NFL eligible draftee by years end with a whole senior still to burn if he so chooses to return.

The UT secondary will have their hands full replacing current vacancies left by 2010 NFL eligible draftees Aaron Williams, Chykie Brown along with Curtis but hopefully the likes of Okafor & Jackson Jeffcoat applying the pressure will make for a smoother transition than usual for the young secondary who seem to already have a viable replacement in one Quandre Diggs. The younger brother of  San Diego Chargers CB Quentin Jammer & early enrollee from Angleton High School is already a top five Houston area NFL prospect without so much as playing a down in a regular season game. Diggs could easily play himself into a starting DB position if the spring game is any indication of things to come from this kid. In a display of fluidity, football savvy & with no regards to making a costly mistake Diggs leapt alongside Mike Davis in the end zone for what easily could of been a sure touchdown against a less skilled freshman. Along with the pass break up Diggs finished, in limited time, with 2 tackles one being an absolute crushing blow on 235 lb. fullback Ryan Roberson after catching a pass from Garrett Gilbert out of the back field. Senior safety Blake Gideon said in reference to Diggs, “he seems to have that natural part, that instinct, that knack for the game, stems on routes and feeling a receivers hips, and that’s something that, for a young defensive back is pretty rare,”. It wouldn’t be surprising at all to see Diggs in the rotation first game of the season, but with four more incoming freshman due this summer & three glaring holes to fill in the secondary that isn’t exactly going out on a limb now is it?

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