The game this week is versus the self-styled Pokelahomans of Oklahoma State University (motto "second best thing to do in Stillwater"). So of course it’s now my solemn responsibility to point out that their most visible gameday tradition revolves around tools men use to spank each other and their mascot looks like the unholy love child of Burt Reynolds and an evil Cavender’s mannequin. Trailer park poltergeist aside, OSU brings with them the start of Big XII play and a top 25 ranking to boot. Texas on the other hand, brings the JUICE.
I’m sure you all saw and Heard the performance by the ‘new’ Texas QB, hybrid clone Vince McCoy aka Jerrod Heard aka Juice. His last game was technically the best all time offensive performance at Texas when measured by yards, but, well you know, Cal D.
A rational man would tell you not to draw too many conclusions from a sample size of one (point five). "Be patient. Teams will gameplan for him now. He’s inexperienced." And yet there’s a warm fuzzy feeling inside me that I just can’t shake.
Man, is this what hope feels like? Heard’s gliding stride into the end zone not once, not twice, but three times elicited an absolutely pavlovian response within Longhorn fans across the world. Salivating at the prospect of another dual threat quarterback, Horn nation leapt to its collective hooves and rejoiced.
I’m not trying to purposefully ignore our defensive woes. Those are well documented and fit for a yakety sax cover or two. OSU will bring to Austin a high powered offense and it certainly won’t be a break for the youth movement that is our D. On the bright side, their offense is fairly untested having only played 2 schools of the ‘Central’ variety and Texas, San Antonio.
40 points or more on both sides doesn’t seem completely farfetched and I expect more lead changes than there are Republican Presidential candidates. But in the end, it will come down to who wants it more, who has that extra Juice.
Adidas has really drilled deep into the details for this week's effort.
The Lonesome Kicker
In 1997, noted poet and Tisch graduate Adam Sandler wrote a ballad for the plight of the lonesome kicker (that National Championship kicker Richmond McGee set his highlight reel to, from his own YouTube account):
"Well, I know I could win their love back by catching a winning touchdown
But, unfortunately, I was born with these very small hands
And I hope that the cameras don't come in too close / 'Cause they might see the tears in my eyes
As I sit on this bench made of cold-hearted wood/ And the splinters go deep in my thighs
And the towel boy snickers as he walks by...the lonesome kicker"
There are two very distinct schools of thought on kickers. There is the one shared by every person I know who watches football:
Kickers are granted admittance into the club of "God’s Chosen People" (football players, natch) while avoiding staple football things like the weight room, drills, tackling, or running in lieu of checking Instagram and playing Chinese Freeze tag during practice. And because they are the welfare state of organized sport, they ought to never err when called upon. Do your job, quasi-football player.
There is probably at least someone out there who comes from the second, logical school of thought:
Kickers, especially at the collegiate level, are 18-22 year old humans who make mistakes sometimes--just like any 18-22 year old human, especially those in pressure filled situations.
Nick Rose can kick really long field goals or really upside down field goals. That much we know. He is also 41/44 from PATs through his college career. That’s like 93%. Can you honestly say there is anything in your life that you do correctly 93 percent of the time? My wife can attest that I can’t even urinate in a toilet with 93% spray accuracy.
It’s not like we expect the QB to complete 93% of his passes, or a D-Lineman to shed 93% of his blockers. But the team and coaches have rallied around the beleaguered and ill-coiffed leg merchant. After all, if we were still with Swoopes and Shawn Watson, who would’ve ever mentally prepared for a 6th extra point?
Better Know a Roster
Wickline recruited some of these guys. Joe Knows.
- Philip Redwine-Bryant (WR, Fr.) - This naming convention actually stems from Holgo’s time in Stillwater, when he would nickname by whatever was in his gatorade bottle. Led to greats like Justin "Mad Dog 20/20" Blackmon, Kendall "Jager Mayo" Hunter, and Brandon "Pickle Vodka" Weeden.
- Kenneth Edison-McGruder (S, Fr.) - I like to imagine a free safety put in a dire situation (covering Daje Johnson maybe?), just failing in the most patented ways and ending in explosion. McGRUDER!
- Marcell Ateman (WR, Jr.) - Stan Lee’s late-career superheros were lacking in imagination...but not necessarily hunger.
- Winston Westbrooks (S, Fr.) - Can you imagine how much of a mega-talented, mega-loathsome manchild Jameis and Russel’s spawn would be?
- Nate Christmon (LB, Fr.) - A curse word in the Jamaican Patois, probably.
- Jaxon Salinas (OL, R-So.) - This is a good time to segway into the lives of the Shipleys. Jaxon, currently on the Cardinals practice squad is expecting (according to the world’s smallest sonogram). Jordan is apparently not missing football, while hunting things bigger than our offensive line.
- Matthew Mucha (OL, R-Fr.) -
Folks, here's a story about Matty the Mucha
He was a lowdown hoochie coocher
He was the roughest, toughest frail
But Matty had a butt as big as a whale (HeidiHeidiHeidi Hi)
- Austin Parker (WR, So.) - Another name for someone who takes MoPac at Rush Hour. Zing!
- Jarrell Owens (DE, R-Fr.) - I heard T.O. is trying to make a comeback, but this is less subtle than those Deion Sanders/Leon Sandcastle commercials.
- Jordan Brailford (DE, R-Fr.) - The defensive answer to the zone...read [puts on glasses].
- Joe Bob Clements (D-Line Coach) - Is there a more Oklahoma thing in the world than a guy with a goatee named Joe Bob?
Presidential Watch: Week 4 (15 of 44)
- Josh Adams (RB, FR) - Notre Dame
- Sam Bush (OL, SO) - Notre Dame
- Jay Hayes (DL, SO) - Notre Dame
- Elijah Taylor (DL, FR) - Notre Dame
- Ty Carter (CB, RS SO) - Rice
- Driphus Jackson (QB, RS SR) - Rice
- Cameron Johnson (WR, FR) - Rice
- Sam Pierce (OL, RS FR) - Rice
- Jalen Jefferson (LB, SR) - Cal
- Dylan Harding (S, So.) - OSU
- James Washington (WR, So.) - OSU
- Johnny Wilson (OL, Fr.) - OSU
VY Pump Fake: Mike Perrin is going to HALO drop onto the field at halftime and crush a gaggle of folksy lawyers (yes, a gaggle) with a briefcase of cash. Texas by 10.
Tejas Chaos: They love guns. They hate Sooners. They wear orange. It's the little brother we always wanted and never had. Texas wins an emotional rollercoaster at home.
Kyle Carpenter: Following the learned trash talk of Notre Dame, Rice, and Berkeley, the relative cavespeak of an Oklahoma public school will be utterly unintelligible for the Horns. That leads to a little thing called focus.Focus + The Juice = Unstoppable
Texas: "You Want Answers"
OSU: "We Want the Juice!"
Texas: "You Can't Handle the Juice!"
[Scene. Texas 48 - OSU 38]