Summer is the season to think big for Texas Football. And, we’re thinking Big 12 Title big.
The Big 12 Championship is returning in 2017. That means Texas Football must go back in time to the beginning of the Big 12.
If you recall, James Brown famously predicted that the unranked Longhorns would upset No. 3 Nebraska in the first Big 12 Title game in 1996.
James Brown was right. 37-27.
Two decades later, the Big 12 Title will run through another familiar foe, Oklahoma.
Perhaps it’s beating the Sooners in the Cotton Bowl in October. Or, it’s Tom Herman vs. Lincoln Riley II at AT&T Stadium in nearby Arlington.
It does not matter. Texas will win the Big 12 Title. And, depending on how the non-conference plays out, that could place Texas in the College Football Playoff.
Why Will Texas Football Win the Big 12?
The Longhorns will win the Big 12 conference because of three reasons.
1. The Longhorns finally have a quarterback:
Since the 2010 BCS National Title game, the Horns have been searching for a consistent quarterback.
- Garrett Gilbert
- David Ash
- Case McCoy
- Jerrod Heard
- Tyrone Swoopes
All of these QBs have had their moments and flashes of brilliance.
- Gilbert nearly led The Comeback vs. Alabama in the 2010 Title Game, but he fell apart in 2011.
- Ash could have been The Guy for Charlie Strong, but a concussion ended his career.
- Case beat Texas A&M to end The Rivalry, but he was inconsistent.
- Heard had the Cal game, but he also had the Kansas State game.
- Swoopes beat Notre Dame, but he also had the Arkansas bowl game.
Shane Buechele had his moment of infamy when the Longhorns lost to Kansas last season, effectively ending the Charlie Strong Era.
But, Buechele was only a freshman. Now, he’s a sophomore with this man leading the way…
2. Texas Football has a new leader.
Tom Herman will not allow the garbage football the Longhorns put their fans through over the past seven seasons.
The seven years of famine is over.
It’s time to reclaim the position of prominence enjoyed during the seven years of feast led by Vince Young and Colt McCoy.
That means a tougher, more physical, dominant brand of football that Longhorns fans expect.
The bottom line is Tom Herman doesn’t give two flips about the reigning Big 12 champion Oklahoma Sooners.
Herman and the Houston Cougars opened up a can on the Sooners to start the 2016 college football season.
Now, Herman has moved his services to Austin. Unfortunately, Herman never got the chance to beat Bob Stoops in the Cotton Bowl since Stoops retired in the middle of the preseason.
So, Herman and the Longhorns will just beat Lincoln Riley’s squad. Whether it’s in the Cotton Bowl or in the Big 12 Title game, or both, it’s going to happen.
3. The Texas Roster has finally matured.
The cupboard was bare for Charlie Strong when he took over in 2014.
Coach Strong rebuilt the roster with stellar recruits who are now juniors and seniors.
Look no further than future NFL No. 1 overall Draft pick Connor Williams, who will be making defenders like high school kids this season.
On defense, Poona Ford will be anchoring a nasty defensive line. Plus, Malik Jefferson is out to prove he’s the best linebacker in college football.
Don’t forget about the ballhawking DBs who will let loose and smash opponents under new DC Todd Orlando.
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This team is all grown up. And they’re tired of being pushed around the Big 12.
That will be the attitude for Texas Football in 2017.
And the result will be just like 1996 when the Longhorns take the Big 12 Title to start a new era for the conference.
Does winning the Big 12 mean a spot in the College Football Playoff? The Week 3 game against USC in September will go a long way toward deciding that.
We’ll find out soon enough when September rolls around to begin the Texas Football re-birth.