We are not all that far away from the preseason polls rolling out ahead of the start of the 2022 regular season, and the Texas football program is sitting squarely in the midst of this conversation. Texas and head coach Steve Sarkisian, despite winning just five games last season, are still generating some buzz ahead of the preseason polls dropping this month.
Sark and the Longhorns do have an extremely potent offense and possess maybe the most talented roster in the Big 12 heading into the regular season, which looks to be the main reasons for the hype ahead of fall camp.
And one of the most recent preseason poll projections that included the Longhorns in the mix came courtesy of Brad Crawford from 247Sports on Aug. 2. Crawford projected the preseason AP Poll ahead of the 2022 season, and he included the Longhorns in the top 15.
Texas actually rang in at No. 15 in this preseason AP Poll projection from Crawford of 247Sports this week. That is a pretty lofty ranking that seems to show how much some of the media around college football is really buying into the Texas hype this year.
I would go so far as to say that Texas even cracking the top 20 seems a bit lofty considering how much this team still has to prove after last season’s disappointing result.
Steve Sarkisian and Texas football projected as the No. 15 team in the preseason AP Poll
Yet, here is more on what Crawford had to say about the placement of the Longhorns at No. 15 in this preseason AP Poll projection for the 2022 campaign.
"Buying the Texas hype? It seems the media is and that’s what matters when it comes to preseason polls. This has been a momentum-building offseason for Steve Sarkisian heading into his second campaign despite last fall’s five-win disappointment. The Longhorns signed five-star Ohio State quarterback transfer Quinn Ewers to pair with an already loaded offense — and he wasn’t the only elite-level acquisition through the transfer portal. You know that early-September showdown against Alabama is going to pit a pair of nationally-ranked teams."
This 247Sports preseason AP Poll projection goes to show how fast some in the media can buy into some of the offseason hype, no matter what happened during the previous season.
And while I’m sure that the ceiling of this Longhorns team is above the No. 15 ranking in the major polls this season, I think it’s best to set realistic expectations ahead of a difficult non-conference schedule. Those realistic expectations seem to peg Texas as at least an eight-win team during the regular season.
That would see the Longhorns at least show some decent improvement in the Big 12 this fall, and really build toward something special for the 2023 campaign. Winning eight or nine games during the regular season does seem realistic for Sark and the Longhorns and would likely put this team in a position to contend for a spot in the Big 12 Championship Game this fall.
An eight or nine-win regular season would also go a long way to helping Texas build more and more momentum on the recruiting trail for the 2023 and 2024 classes. Texas making significant strides on the field, and thus in the win column, this fall would then legitimize some of the hype for Sark and his staff on the recruiting trail heading into next offseason.
Texas finished up last season with a record of 5-7 (3-6 Big 12), missing out on bowl season for the first time since 2016. Sark and the Longhorns will open up the 2022 regular season at home on Sep. 3 against Louisiana-Monroe.