Skip to main content

Sports Illustrated Downplays Hype Surrounding Texas Football

A flag being held during a Texas Longhorns with the team's logo on it.

AUSTIN, TX - SEPTEMBER 25: A flag for the Texas Longhorns waves at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium on September 25, 2010 in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Following the Texas Longhorns' win over the Georgia Bulldogs in the Sugar Bowl, Sam Ehlinger said "We're back." His simple statement could set the stage for either an epic or disastrous season in 2019.

Texas enters this upcoming season with high expectations after owning a 10-4 record the year before.

Most projections have the Longhorns battling the Oklahoma Sooners for supremacy in the Big 12. However, it turns out that Sports Illustrated isn't sold on all the hype in Austin.

In fact, two of the writers at SIchose the Longhorns as a program that will struggle to meet expectations.

From Sports Illustrated:

Scooby Axson: "For all the constant talk about how Texas is back, especially after winning 10 games for the first time this decade (there are many that have picked the Longhorns to make some national championship noise), the lack of depth—especially on the defensive end—has to have Tom Herman concerned. Breaking in eight starters on that side of the ball, plus having no real contingency plan if quarterback Sam Ehlinger gets hurt, might have Texas looking up at Oklahoma once again."

Ross Dellenger: "This is a product of the hype and the hype alone, because I do think the Longhorns are contenders, and I like Sam Ehlinger at QB, but the "Texas is back" talk is so overpowering that the Horns can't possibly meet the expectations. Any team that must replace eight defensive senior starters will have some early-season growing pains, and that's not mentioning a pass defense that ranked 110th nationally last season. The Horns feel like a solid top-20 team, but these CFP projections are shooting awfully high."

One key for Texas meeting expectations is complementing its high-octane offense with serviceable defense.

Tom Herman received a two-year extension because of his current progress at Texas. While an underwhelming year wouldn't necessarily hurt his job status, the athletic department is most likely expecting a strong season.

[Sports Illustrated]