Oklahoma travels south of the Red River for their annual grudge match against the Texas Longhorns at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas. As we are gathering information and preparing for the game we've reached out to our SBN partners at Burnt Orange Nation and Peter Bean, who is their burnt orange leader. for insight on the game from a Texas fan's perspective.
CCM: New offensive and defensive coordinators - which one has impressed you the most through the first four games and why?
PB: At least at this point, it's like trying to choose between Vince Young and Ricky Williams -- both have been delightfully impressive. Gun to my head, I'd go with Bryan Harsin, if only because the contrast between Greg Davis and Harsin is so stark while Manny Diaz is replacing a defensive coordinator in Will Muschamp who Texas fans really liked. I wrote a post yesterday that explains the big reasons why I'm so high on Harsin and the difference between his approach and that of Greg Davis.
CCM: Does the dual quarterback system give Texas fans confidence or make them nervous? Do you have a personal preference between Ash and McCoy?
PB: It's been a great thing for this young offense to this point in the season, allowing both quarterbacks to get comfortable out there by doing what it is they do well. Whether one eventually separates from the other is another question, but it's been a great thing thus far and gives us some nice diversity and ability to mix and match.
CCM: What are you most confident about with this Texas squad going into the Red River Rivalry?
PB: Without question the thing I feel best about is that this coaching staff will give us a chance to compete. Texas fans aren't under any illusions that we're at a similar point in the talent cycle as OU this year, but we feel great that we'll give ourselves a great shot to be competitive because of the way this team has been developed through September, and how incredibly impressive our coaching staff has been in attacking opponents thoughtfully and strategically. Oklahoma won't have the benefit of Greg Davis to make things easier on them this year.
CCM: You're defensive coordinator Manny Diaz, what's your game plan for stopping Oklahoma's passing attack?
BON: My assumption is that Diaz will want to take away the big play and bring some pressure on Landry Jones, hopefully hitting him a few times and disrupting the tempo of that fast-moving offense. I expect the plan will be to force Oklahoma to show that it can run the ball, and do so consistently - both to sustain drives down the field, and then to put 6 on the board instead of 3 in the red zone. The biggest worry is a comfortable Landry Jones with time to throw... it's all over if that happens, and OU's amazing wide receiving corps will bury us.
CCM: State fair, corn dogs and carnies was something I had read earlier on B.O.N. that described the atmosphere for this game. What is your all-time favorite Red River Rivalry memory?
PB: Oh that's too easy. There have many many great games and great wins -- the 45-35 win in 2008 may never be topped -- but I will never, ever forget the elation of Stoney Clark's goal-line stand.
Bonus Question: Do you care to make a score prediction?
PB: Goodness no, but we'd might as well. I've set my expectations on being competitive in the right ways, but we're a young, growing team and this isn't like any other game a lot of these kids have played. I'll be safe, play the reverse jinx, predict a 33-28 Oklahoma win, and hope to be thrilled that I'm wrong. Even so, despite predicting an OU win, since you promised to throw a Hook ‘em if UT wins it: if the wretched Sooners do in fact win the game, I'll sign off EDSBS LIVE next week with a simple "Boomer Sooner." I will probably burst into flames, but hey, fair is fair.
Head on over to BON for the other half of the Q&A with my responses to their questions,