Monday, April 1, 2013
Big 12 spring game recap: Texas
By David Ubben
Our friends at HornsNation were on the scene at Texas' spring game this weekend, so you can see more about what happened right here.
We'll break that down further for games we don't have people attending, but here's a few things I learned from Texas' spring game:
- Introducing Tyrone Swoopes into this offense really is fascinating. I do think it's time to pump the brakes a little bit on Swoopes "stealing the show." But he has impressive wheels, and if he can do what he did Saturday with consistency in fall camp, he'll at least force coach Mack Brown and offensive coordinator Major Applewhite to make a decision. Whether he's the full-time backup ahead of Case McCoy (and I still need more convincing that it will be the case in 2013), is it worth burning his redshirt to work him in with a package? Sounds like Brown doesn't need much convincing. "I think you could see tonight what he can do. He can run, he is big, he is strong … 6-foot 5-inches and 250 pounds … and he throws the ball well. He just needs to keep getting more reps," Brown told reporters. "We are trying to get the best quarterbacks. Obviously Case will be gone in a year, so somebody needs to be ready to go." It speaks volumes that Swoopes is already ahead of Jalen Overstreet and Connor Brewer on the depth chart, but I'm fascinated to see how (the full offense or a limited package) and how much Texas uses Swoopes while McCoy is still on campus. If nothing else, he will make for an intriguing summer on the 40 Acres, as well as fall camp.
- Great to see Jordan Hicks on the field and making stops. He's a great, instinctive player who we didn't get to play much of last season because of a hip injury. He picked off David Ash and made six tackles, including two tackles for loss.
- Back on the quarterbacks. McCoy all too often does little to help himself or give much confidence that he'll be a solid backup for Ash. He's certainly got far more experience than just about every backup in the Big 12, but tossing up easy interceptions into double coverage, like the one Sheroid Evans swiped off, has to have coaches shaking their heads a little bit. That's not a play a senior should be making, especially against a defense he's seen all spring. "It’s really hard to sit a guy who has that much experience," Applewhite said. "But my goal is that Tyrone, Connor and Jalen are strong enough to be able to go take a swing at [the No. 3 spot]."
- Maybe the best news for Texas this spring is that their banged-up running backs finally getting a string of good luck. It seems like every time Joe Bergeron, Johnathan Gray and Malcolm Brown got healthy, one of them would go down with a nagging injury. "All three of the running backs stayed healthy through the spring and are running really well. We developed more depth in the offensive line than we have had around here in a number of years," Brown said. Ash might have to hear that quote 1,000 times before it stops making him smile. That could make his life a whole lot easier. "We haven’t had a problem with how to play them. We’ve had a problem keeping them healthy. I’d love to have to figure out how to rotate them. I hope we can do that," Brown said.