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A look at Texas

The Charlie Strong era begins soon for the Texas Longhorns.

Posted: August 21, 2014 - 10:39pm  |  Updated: August 22, 2014 - 12:13am
Texas coach Charlie Strong gives the "hook 'em horns" sign while his players raise their helmets after the Orange and White spring NCAA college football game, Saturday, April 19, 2014, in Austin, Texas.  (AP Photo/Michael Thomas)  Michael Thomas
Michael Thomas
Texas coach Charlie Strong gives the "hook 'em horns" sign while his players raise their helmets after the Orange and White spring NCAA college football game, Saturday, April 19, 2014, in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Thomas)
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The Charlie Strong era begins soon for the Texas Longhorns. He’s diving head-first into his inaugural season at Texas with a schedule that pits the Longhorns against BYU, UCLA, Baylor and Oklahoma by mid-October. Strong inherits 14 returning starters and a top-10 defense.

Texas hasn’t had strong quarterback play since Colt McCoy was under center. David Ash has struggled with injuries, and the team’s success will depend on his health.

However, he won’t be alone in the backfield as Malcolm Brown returns after a 904-yard season. Johnathan Gray makes it a 1-2 punch after running for 780 yards despite missing the last four games of last season with an Achilles injury. At wide receiver, Jaxon Shipley returns after leading the Longhorns with 56 receptions a year ago. However, he suffered a hamstring injury during practice in early August. No timetable was set for his return, whether he misses game time or just preseason workouts. With the graduation of Mike Davis and dismissal of Kendall Sanders, Texas has some work to do at receiver. Besides Shipley, the Longhorns don’t have a receiver who had more than 24 catches last season.

Defensively, Texas should miss Jackson Jeffcoat, but defensive end Cedric Reed is ready to step out from Jeffcoat’s shadow and make a name for himself. Reed was third on the team with 78 tackles and a team-high 22 tackles for loss last season. Linebackers Dalton Santos and Steve Edmond accounted for a combined 147 tackles last year. In the secondary, cornerbacks Quandre Diggs and Duke Thomas are poised for breakout seasons.

THE LONGHORNS’ SCHEDULE

2013 results

2013 stats

KEY RETURNERS

KEY LOSSES

HEAD COACH

LOCATION

STADIUM

— Compiled by Krista Pirtle

Aug. 30 North Texas

Sept. 6 Brigham Young

Sept. 13 UCLA in Arlington

Sept. 27 at Kansas*

Oct. 4 Baylor*

Oct. 11 Oklahoma* in Dallas

Oct. 18 Iowa State*

Oct. 25 at Kansas State*

Nov. 1 at Texas Tech*

Nov. 8 West Virginia*

Nov. 15 at Oklahoma State*

Nov. 27 TCU*

*Big 12 games

8-5, 7-2 (4th in Big 12)

29.3 (65) scoring offense

25.8 (57) scoring defense

408.7 (64) total offense

196.2 (36) rushing

212.5 (79) passing

407.2 (68) total defense

183.1 (83) run defense

224.2 (53) pass defense

RB Malcolm Brown, DE Cedric Reed, CB Quandre Diggs

DE Jackson Jeffcoat,
S Adrian Phillips, WR Mike Davis

Charlie Strong,

1st season

Austin

Darrell K. Royal —
Texas Memorial Stadium

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