Final season, Texas soccer aimed to capitalize with its star-studded roster, consisting of five-star then-redshirt freshman Quinn Ewers and now NFL halfback Bijan Robinson. However issues went awry for the Longhorns as they struggled with miscues and sloppy playmaking. Because the projected Large 12 champion this season and soon-to-be SEC group, Texas should goal these key points to take pleasure in sustainable success this season.
The Deep Ball
Ewers’ 2022 season had highs and lows, primarily regarding the quarterback’s arm. The redshirt sophomore suffered a clavicle sprain that sidelined him for 3 video games earlier than he returned towards Oklahoma. Ewers’ downfield accuracy, particularly, wants enchancment. Final season, his completion proportion completed at 58.1%, inserting him one centesimal within the nation and seventh within the Large 12. Though Ewers’ arm is among the many finest, one may argue his early-season harm shook his poise within the pocket towards foes like Oklahoma State. When questioned about deep ball accuracy, Ewers remained assured after a profitable spring sport efficiency.
“I feel we actually took time and labored on the deep balls and obtained the timing down and the depth and the angles of all of the routes,” Ewers stated. “We’re simply going to construct up from right here on out, and I’m excited.”
Texas’ offensive success will journey with Ewers, and if this group needs to compete, Ewers’ effectivity should skyrocket.
Third and Fourth Down Protection
The Longhorn protection considerably improved within the 2022 season. After giving up 31.1 factors per sport in 2021, Texas’ protection solely gave up 21.6 factors per sport in 2022. However sure considerations nonetheless uncovered this protection — particularly in clutch conditions. Texas’ opponent third-down proportion stood at 41.31%, rating 94th within the nation, and their opponent fourth-down proportion closed at 57.1%. These stats confirmed towards Texas Tech final season when the Longhorns allowed six out of eight fourth-down makes an attempt in Lubbock. Higher ball strain that finishes performs for good may appropriate these extremely under-average defensive numbers.
The Texas protection should end performs within the clutch to compete nationally. In 13 video games, Texas garnered 27 sacks and 173 sack yards, ending at 71st within the nation. Whereas Texas’ strain remained constant, the shortage of closers within the pocket was a evident challenge. Whereas sacks don’t equal wins, this correction may catapult Texas to the following degree with an already reliable rush protection.
Fumble recoveries additionally require work. The Longhorns pressured 11 fumbles however solely recovered 4 (36.36%), concluding 119th within the nation behind Oklahoma. Creating extra turnovers may play a key position within the group’s enchancment.