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Jenni Carlson


There’s nothing to fear about Texas, unless …

by Jenni Carlson Published: November 10, 2010

Oklahoma State fans, you are pumped about your football team.

Rightfully so.

But you have some trepidation about this Texas game.

Rightfully so.

Both of those are entirely acceptable emotions if you’re a member of the Cowboy Nation. This team has gone above and beyond the expectations of most, winning eight of its first nine games and sitting atop the Big 12 South. But this program has developed an Austin problem. No matter what kind of team it has taken to Texas over the past few years, no matter what kind of performance that team has turned in, nothing has resulted in a victory.

This year will be different, Cowboy fans.

The reason?

OSU is the better teams. Period.

The Cowboys don’t have an advantage here or there. They don’t have to get a dozen breaks. They don’t have to pull a bunch of trickery or use a ton of shenanigans. If they play the way that they’re capable of playing, they will for sure win Saturday in Austin.

Unless, of course, Mack Brown decides to change quarterbacks.

Now, I’m not saying Texas will surely win if it ditches starter Garrett Gilbert for back-up Case McCoy. Quarterback play, after all, isn’t the Longhorns only problem. But a change at quarterback could be an infusion of hope. It could give the Texas offense reason to believe it can score. It could give the Texas defense reason to believe the offense might be able to actually reward its stops with some points. It could give the Longhorn faithful reason to stand up and cheer.

And that could be big. That’s because there are lots of folks in burnt orange looking for something to believe in right now.

There might be no one better than McCoy. He’s not only a symbol of what might be in the future but also a link to past successes. He’s the younger brother of Texas legend Colt McCoy, and seeing a quarterback with “McCOY” on his jersey back on the field would give the Longhorns a charge.

But would he be able to lead Texas to an upset of OSU?

I say no.

McCoy is a freshman who’s never played in such a high-pressure situation. And remember, this Cowboy defense is playing better and better each week. But if McCoy does trot onto the field Saturday evening in Austin, OSU will need tot keep its cool, stick to its fundamentals and play within itself. It is good enough to handle the Texas offense regardless of whether Gilbert or McCoy is under center.

McCoy playing quarterback should be cause for some concern, Cowboy fans, but it is hardly a reason to panic.

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by Jenni Carlson
Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football...
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