Saturday, September 8, 2012
Instant Analysis: Texas 45, New Mexico 0
By Carter Strickland
The Longhorns struggled to put points on the scoreboard early but eventually were able to take control as they shut out New Mexico -- their first shutout since a 43-0 win over Kansas in 2011. It's the third time these two teams have met and the third time Texas has shut out the Lobos.
It was over when: Texas wide receiver Mike Davis used the block of Marquise Goodwin to slip past the New Mexico defense for a touchdown late in the first half. That score put Texas up 17-0. And while the Longhorns were having trouble moving the ball, New Mexico was having trouble scoring on the Texas defense.
Game ball goes to: Cornerback Quandre Diggs clearly was a player New Mexico wanted to avoid. The Lobos refused to throw to his side for most of the game. In fact, they threw the first nine passes away from his side of the field. On the 10th, they did go at Diggs and he made them pay with an interception. Diggs also returned a put 35 yards to the New Mexico 27 to set up Mike Davis' 22-yard touchdown catch and run in the second quarter.
Stat of the game: Texas quarterback David Ash threw for a personal-record 221 yards. But he only had one completion that traveled 20 yards in the air. This comes one week after Ash's 27 attempts against Wyoming averaged 3.7 air yards. Ash did have a touchdown pass of 45 yards but it came via a two-foot shovel pass to Daje Johnson. His 22-yard touchdown pass was a catch and run by Mike Davis.
Unsung hero: Texas true freshman Dalton Santos has become a force for the Longhorns on special teams. The linebacker had three tackles on kickoff coverage and was largely responsible for New Mexico being forced to start inside the 25 on every kickoff that was not downed for a touchback.
Second guessing: After saying it wanted to get freshman Johnathan Gray involved in the game, Texas failed to give the nation's top running back recruit from a year ago the ball in the first half. This is the second week in a row Texas has not given Gray the ball when the game's outcome was not locked away. Similarly, Malcolm Brown, who had 104 rushing yards in the opener, had one first-half carry.
What we learned about this team: Texas is far from a finished product on either side of the ball. The Longhorns once again started too slow. On defense, the tackling was suspect as New Mexico had 11 first downs in the first half. On offense, quarterback David Ash was able to connect on comeback routes, screens and crossing routes. But he continued to have problems going down the field with the ball.