The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Sports

August 4, 2013

Brown confident as UT opens practice

AUSTIN, Texas — Texas coach Mack Brown strolled into his Sunday news conference at the start of training camp lighter than he’s been in years.

Literally and figuratively.

Brown said he has lost 25 pounds, and looked trim and refreshed and exuded the confident aura of a coach who is sleeping well knowing that he has the most experienced team in the Big 12.

And almost a month before the first real snap from scrimmage, Brown declared the Longhorns his best team since the 2009 squad played for the national title.

“I am more confident this will be the best team we’ve had in three years,” Brown said.

Of course, the last three went 22-16 and haven’t even challenged for a Big 12 title let alone been in the hunt for a national one. But Brown clearly feels like the last three seasons, from the disastrous 5-7 in 2010, have led to this point when he’s got 19 returning starters in a league that seems as wide open as ever.

Brown is even opening up the doors to the place (sort of) to the fans to come see what he’s talking about. Unlike the last few years when Brown retreated behind closed practices to spare his program and young players from intense fan and media scrutiny, the Longhorns are inviting fans to watch three practices this week.

“The attitude of the entire team is we get this thing, now we’re older,” Brown said.

But Brown, who enters his 16th season as Texas having won just two Big 12 titles, also noted talk is cheap until the season starts.

“Now we’ve got to shut up and do it,” Brown said.

Whether the Longhorns live up to Brown’s expectations depends largely on junior quarterback David Ash, who has dazzled and befuddled his coaches over the last two seasons. With a 12-6 record as a starter, Ash’s resume includes some big comebacks and blowout losses, notably last season’s embarrassing 63-21 loss to Oklahoma.

For Texas coaches and fans who still remember the heady days of Vince Young and Colt McCoy, Ash has been a figure of frustration with 23 touchdown passes and 16 interceptions.

Brown said he sees new maturity in Ash and a new confidence propelled by last season’s come-from-behind win against Oregon State in the Alamo Bowl. Plus Ash no longer has to look over his shoulder at backup Case McCoy, who spent most of the summer on a mission trip in South America. Ash is the established No. 1 and the offense is his to lead.

“The biggest thing from David is he’s had two great years to learn. Some things really positive, some things not as good ... all of those situations have prepared him,” Brown said. “He understands now (his teammates) all watch him, when he speaks they’ll listen because he is the guy.”

 

1
Text Only
Sports
  • Moving In? Indoor football coming back to Enid?

    Oklahoma City businessman Antwone Taulton and Enid Enforcers manager Mark Timberlake are in the early stages of a plan they hope will see the return of arena football in 2015 to Enid after an absence of more than 10 years. And if things progress as one league executive expects, an official announcement could be forthcoming in the near future.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • Morris Claiborne Claiborne wants to prove worth to Dallas

    Morris Claiborne had already told reporters he was ready to prove he was worthy of Dallas’ dramatic move up the draft board to get him with the sixth overall pick in 2012. He didn’t waste any time showing some urgency.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tim Tebow NCAA settles head-injury suit, will change rules

    The NCAA agreed on Tuesday to help athletes with head injuries in a proposed settlement of a class-action lawsuit that college sports’ governing body touted as a major step forward but that critics say doesn’t go nearly far enough.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • Attorney: OU's Mixon acted in self defense

    The attorney for Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon said the incident that left a 20-year-old female OU student with multiple facial fractures was a case of self-defense.

    July 29, 2014

  • OSU no longer faces APR restrictions

    NCAA officials say Oklahoma State’s football program no longer faces restrictions for the upcoming school year because its Academic Progress Rate has been amended.

    July 29, 2014

  • Radio-TV for 7-30-14

    July 29, 2014

  • Jeff Mullin mug 2012.jpg Rice's punishment hardly fit the crime

    Two games, just over 12 percent of the 16-game regular season. Two games for hitting a woman hard enough to knock her out cold.
    Rice said Monday he will not appeal his suspension, which could wind up costing him $529,411 in fines and salary. And why wouldn’t he? He must feel like he got off scot-free.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • SamBradfordpicturejpeg Bradford used to being at 'career crossroads'

    It’s become a rite of training camp for Sam Bradford.
    Every summer, he deals with the oversized burden of living up to getting picked first overall in 2010. The St. Louis Rams quarterback is not surprised that once again, he’s supposedly at a career crossroads.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • TU wins C-USA academic honor

    The University of Tulsa earned the 2013-14 Conference USA Institutional Excellence award by posting the highest grade point average during the 2013-14 academic year for all student athletes in conference-sponsored athletes, the school announced on Monday.

    July 28, 2014

  • Hixon added to West All-State football team

    July 28, 2014

Click here for NASCAR headlines
Sports Photos


Enid News & Eagle sports photos from the month of February 2014. Enjoy all the ENE photos with full access at http://enidnews.smugmug.com.