3 problematic Roadrunners players for Texas football in Week 3

Frank Harris, Texas Football Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports
Frank Harris, Texas Football Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports /
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Trevor Harmanson, Texas Football Mandatory Credit: Rick Bowmer/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports
Trevor Harmanson, Texas Football Mandatory Credit: Rick Bowmer/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports /

A challenging opponent lies ahead for head coach Steve Sarkisian and Texas football this weekend in a matchup against head coach Jeff Traylor and the defending Conference-USA Champion UTSA Roadrunners. Injury upon injury at the quarterback position in the last two weeks will wind up putting Texas in a spot that Sark and his staff won’t be accustomed to this weekend, especially in the passing game.

Texas comes into this matchup with the Roadrunners looking to carry some confidence into Big 12 play. A convincing win over UTSA this weekend would prove that the Longhorns aren’t facing a hangover after the tough one-point loss at the hands of head coach Nick Saban and the No. 1 ranked Alabama Crimson Tide from back on Sep. 10.

Meanwhile, UTSA is sure to give everything they have on the field under the lights at Darrell K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium on Sep. 17. UTSA isn’t going to be intimidated by Texas, as they have plenty of proven experience returning on both sides of the ball.

Potent UTSA players for Texas football to deal with this weekend

With that in mind, here’s a look at three problematic UTSA players for Texas this weekend.

Trevor Harmanson, LB

UTSA doesn’t have anyone player that really stands above the rest so far this season in terms of their ability to make plays and really shift the direction of a game. The Roadrunners are a great example of how a defense can be very productive as a unit in a few phases of the game with no one taking the spotlight individually.

UTSA’s run defense is definitely one of the best in the Group of Five, allowing fewer than 3.5 yards per carry as a team since the start of last season.

Yet, if there is one player on this UTSA defense that can wreak some havoc in multiple phases of the game and cause Texas some real trouble if he shows out this weekend, it’s redshirt senior linebacker Trevor Harmanson. The 6-foot-3 and 225-pound Harmanson is one of the playmakers in this front seven for the Roadrunners.

There are games when he is the absolute definition of wreaking havoc by stopping the run and disrupting opposing passing attacks. He’s got nearly two dozen tackles for loss under his belt, a few dozen run stuffs, along with multiple interceptions (one of which he’s returned for a touchdown), forced fumbles, and fumble recoveries.

Something can be often overlooked is how effective Harmanson can be when he is utilized as a pass rusher. His sack numbers aren’t going to jump off the page at anyone, as he has around three for his career. In around 120 pass rush snaps for his career, Harmanson has around two-dozen quarterback pressures under his belt. That was good for a pressure rate around 19 percent, well above average for a Group of Five linebacker over the course of the last four seasons.

Harmanson does it all for the UTSA defense. He’s one of their most productive run-stoppers and can get after the quarterback when called upon. UTSA is going to use him to try and limit the Texas run game and could also send him on some delayed blitzes from the middle linebacker position through the A-gap.