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Hornucopia

UT plays the role of Ned Beatty. Where's our Burt Reynolds?

By Michael Corcoran, Fri., Oct. 12, 2012

Hornucopia
Photo courtesy of University of Texas

In last year’s Red River Rivalry at the Alliteration Bowl in Dallas, Oklahoma scored three touchdowns on defense- from a David Ash interception, and fumbles by Case McCoy and Mike Davis – to rout the previously undefeated Longhorns 55-17. They had Landry Jones at QB, doing Sam Bradford like Jason Sudeikis does Mitt Romney, while we had a couple of rotating Greenhorns behind center seemingly plucked from the stands. Our defense wasn’t much better against OU. Texas couldn’t stop payment on a check to Bernie Madoff.

We'll see how much David Ash> has grown up – and how well he'll forget being abused – Saturday at 11am. If you're going to ACL Fest that early because you're dating a member of Quiet Company (or, more likely, work with him at Thundercloud Subs), the game will be shown on a big screen behind the Rock Island.

On the plus side, Landry Jones' favorite target Ryan Broyles has moved on to the NFL. But we'll still have to contend with that arrogant Switzer wet dream Kenny Stills, who loves to rip off his helmet to show the flashy blonde Mohawk. Since Mack Brown would never stand for that, he should at least recruit guys named Crosby and Nash to stay with him.

This is the first time I can remember that both Texas and OU have a loss going into the big showdown. The big bad Soon­ers continued their streak as the most overrated team in football by laying down at home to Kansas State. Dreams die in Norman like forgotten hamsters. But Stoops' troops rebounded nicely against Texas Tech in Lubbock last week when they finally realized after the half that scoring points is the best way to ignore the town's Eau de Qaoshit perfume.

The Horns lost a 48-45 thriller last week against West Virginia when they put all their Geno Smith apples in one basket and got pranked by Andrew "Baba" Buie, who gained 207 yards on the ground. This kid did everything, even tackling himself in the open field just before halftime.

I've never played the game, never studied X's and O's – and so I'm constantly using football terms I don't understand, like "bubble screen," "weakside linebacker," and "starting safety Adrian Phillips." I'm just a fan, but one with a certain shining.

I can spot a team of destiny and this year's version rode to town last week on a goddamned John Denver song. Team of D rule: unexpected heroes at every turn. And fourth-down conversions: WV was five of five, aided by a Mack Brown time out that transformed a sack into a touchdown pass.

When the Mountaineers are playing Alabama for the national championship (and losing badly, so maybe they're just a team of dest), they'll think back at this moment of the Texas game as the one that got 'em there: Texas recovered a Smith fumble at the WV 12 yard line late in the fourth quarter, trailing by three. And didn't score.

I mean, are you gonna close the deal or tell Hayden Panettiere to put her shirt back on because she's had a little too much to drink? Ash had slightly better numbers than Geno Heisman – 22-29 for 269 yards and no turnovers – but coach Bryan Harsin seemed to suddenly lose confidence at that critical juncture. After burning two downs with some weakass Joe Bergeron runs up the gut (I pictured Harsin tied up and gagged with a sinister Greg Davis back in the booth), Ash went into shotgun formation to pass. But the snap flew by him, he lost 16 yards, and the ghost of JoePa pushed Anthony Fera's 41-yard FG attempt to the right.

When Geno and his two sensational wideouts marched down the field and Buie knifed in from the 5 to put WV up by 10 with just over a minute left, the Fera miss was moot. Texas lost to the better team, which is why I wished they'd played with less caution. Why chew clock in a shootout trying to establish a ground game against a defense which was only good against the run. Exploit weakness, anyone? Why not use the more explosive Johnathan Gray and his wildcat in the fourth quarter instead of Lumberin' Joe? And the next time I see the sensational playmaker Daje Johnson on the sidelines with the game in the balance, he'd better be on crutches.

Back and forth the score went, like the banjos of Deliverance, with Texas, once down 21-7, taking leads of 28-24 and 38-34. But in the end (no pun intended), Texas was Ned Beatty.

Now, who's gonna be our Burt Reynolds with a bow and arrow against OU?

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