The two key injuries Texas football and head coach Steve Sarkisian came into the Red River Rivalry game with on Oct. 7 were to redshirt junior boundary corner Ryan Watts and junior tight end Ja’Tavion Sanders. According to an ESPN report on Oct. 7, Watts is ruled out for Red River against the No. 12 Oklahoma Sooners.
Sanders is active for the Longhorns after suffering an ankle injury last weekend in Texas’ 40-14 win over the No. 24 Kansas Jayhawks. A Kansas defender rolled up on Sanders’ ankle and didn’t return to the game after that injury.
Watts also suffered a lower-body injury in Texas’ win over Kansas last weekend. He suffered a lower-body injury in the first half and didn’t return to the game. Watts reportedly didn’t practice this week.
Texas football CB Ryan Watts out vs. OU
True freshman corner Malik Muhammad and redshirt junior Gavin Holmes will take the reps at the boundary spot in place of the injured Watts. Muhammad has taken over 140 defensive snaps at cornerback this season. He’s also rotated at boundary corner at times this season.
Holmes has also taken over 140 defensive snaps this season, mostly at field corner.
Despite missing the second half against Kansas, Watts still leads all Texas defensive backs in snaps this season with 190.
Sanders gives Texas’ offense a major weapon vs. OU
Sanders is one of the biggest mismatches the Longhorns have at the skill positions on offense. He came into Week 6 ranked third in the FBS in receiving yards among tight ends with over 270.
Even with Sanders active for the Oklahoma game, we’re likely going to see more featured snaps for fellow junior tight end Gunnar Helm.