Texas Football: Where ESPN ranked Longhorns in early 2020 top 25?

Way-too-early college football ranking lists will begin to drop heading into the 2020 offseason. Where did Texas football fall in line with ESPN?

It’s officially list season in the college football universe and the Texas football program is going to hear their name mentioned all around the building hype and speculation for 2020. Texas finished up their 2019 season with a record of 8-5 (5-4 Big 12). They salvaged a letdown of a 2019 regular season by beating the No. 11 ranked Utah Utes in the Alamo Bowl by the final score of 38-10.

That eighth win was enough for the Texas Longhorns football program to get a lot of budding hype heading into the 2020 offseason. With all the way-too-early top 25 rankings that are about to drop in the coming days and weeks, seeing where the Longhorns fall on each respective list will be interesting.

This is the time of year when Longhorn football fans can get their expectations all out of whack for what’s to come in the upcoming offseason. But there’s a very long way to go, with a lot of twists and turns that can happen in between, before realistic expectations can begin to take shape. Preseason rankings also mean nothing prior to kickoff of the upcoming regular season.

However, one of the major national college football media outlets that was worth looking into for their edition of the 2020 way-too-early top 25 rankings was ESPN. Their version of the early 2020 polls had the Longhorns falling in line at No. 24, which was much lower than most other media outlets.

Here’s the reasoning ESPN gave behind their ranking for the Longhorns for the early 2020 polls.

After compiling a 25-15 record in his first three seasons, Year 4 for Tom Herman seems like it’s going to be, well, rather important. The Longhorns have two new coordinators: former Ohio State assistant Mike Yurcich was hired as offensive coordinator, and former Rutgers coach Chris Ash is the new defensive coordinator. UT got a boost when quarterback Sam Ehlinger, who has a 19-13 record as a starter, elected to return for his senior season, along with left tackle Sam Cosmi. The Longhorns will miss Duvernay and Johnson, one of the better receiver tandems in the FBS when healthy. There’s also quite a bit of talent coming back on defense, so 2020 better be more fruitful, for Herman’s sake. The Longhorns play at LSU in their second game and get Baylor, Iowa State, West Virginia and TCU at home.

Texas will be returning a number of starters entering the offseason. So there’s some warrant for the hype the Longhorns will be building this coming offseason. But they still have to recruit well to round out their 2020 class ahead of National Signing Day and make sure they’re able to stay healthy and manage the NCAA Transfer Portal well.

Next: 3 best Texas bowl games from the 2010's

There’s a lot more moving parts starting in the month of December, with the Early Signing Period, that happen during college football’s long offseason than there used to be. The addition of the Early Signing Period and transfer portal helped to bring that trend about.

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