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Archive for Saturday, November 15, 2008

KU vs. UT: Head to head

November 15, 2008

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KU football vs. Texas

KUSports.com online editor Jesse Newell & Journal-World sports editor Tom Keegan take a look at what to expect from the Jayhawk football team's game against Texas.

Past Event
KU vs. Texas

Kansas University Football

  • When: Saturday, November 15, 2008, 11:30 a.m.
  • Where: Memorial Stadium, 11th and Maine streets, Lawrence
  • Cost: $60
  • More on this event....
On the street

Do you think the KU football team will go to a bowl game?

I do not believe they will. They’re gonna be losing.

More responses

When Kansas has the ball

Kansas rush offense vs. Texas rush defense

After a strong ground presence in recent weeks, the Jayhawks struggled to get a substantial running game going against Nebraska. Kansas rushed for just 118 yards as the Huskers' front line proved too dominant.

Texas ranks sixth nationally against the run, holding opponents to 86 yards a game. Though they've allowed over 200 yards in two of their past three games, the Longhorns have held six teams to less than 50 yards on the ground.

Edge: Texas

Kansas pass offense vs. Texas pass defense

In one of quarterback Todd Reesing's roughest outings of the season, the junior from Austin, Texas, completed just 50 percent of his passes against Nebraska, although he was constantly under pressure and still managed 304 yards and three touchdowns through the air. Reesing remains among the national leaders in multiple categories and is on pace to surpass last year's total of 3,486 passing yards.

If the Longhorns have a weakness, it's that they've had trouble stopping the pass. While they're averaging over three sacks a game (third nationally), they're giving up 267 yards passing per contest, ninth in the Big 12.

Edge: Kansas

When Texas has the ball

Texas rush offense vs. Kansas rush defense

Quarterback Colt McCoy, who figures to be a Heisman finalist later this year, has led the Longhorns with his arm and legs. He's currently the team's leading rusher, carrying the ball 101 times for 449 yards and seven touchdowns. Aside from McCoy, however, Texas has used a carries-by-committee strategy this season, led by Vondrell McGee and Chris Ogbonnaya.

The Jayhawks are coming off one of their worst performances against the run to date, having allowed Nebraska back Roy Helu Jr. to amass 115 yards and two touchdowns in last week's loss. A number of big plays, including a 52-yard touchdown run by Helu, allowed the Huskers to take control.

Edge: Texas

Texas pass offense vs. Kansas pass defense

McCoy enters today's' game ranked in the top 10 nationally in pass efficiency, passing yards per game, total passing yards and total offense. He has thrown for 2,879 yards and 28 touchdowns, while tossing just seven interceptions - his biggest problem area a year ago.

This, certainly, will not be a favorable matchup for a Kansas secondary that has been completely re-tooled since the start of the season. The Jayhawks were burned for 324 yards last week by Huskers quarterback Joe Ganz and have held just one Big 12 team - Colorado - under 260 yards passing this season.

Edge: Texas

Special teams

Kansas' kickoff-return unit continues to hinder the team's offense, having been unable to give Reesing and Co. adequate field position with which to work. Punting also has developed into a problem, with the Jayhawks managing just 32.4 yards per punt, 10th in the conference.

The Longhorns lead the Big 12 in punting and punt returns since the conference schedule started, and kicker Hunter Lawrence has connected on nine of his 11 field-goal attempts and is a perfect 52-of-52 on PATs.

Edge: Texas

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