The weather dialed this one up to be perfect. Mid 70’s and the clouds clearing as the kickoff neared. A sell out crowd of approximately 93,000 enjoyed a full day of an amazing tailgate experience and weather unlike the Stanford game one week ago. This was a national tv delight. This crowd filled in on time and tip of the hat to the USC administration giving everyone plenty of notice on what to expect with the construction and loss of entry points. Add to the mix one of the best tailgate experiences you can imagine for a college football game and it was a special day.
Twelve years in the waiting. Anticipation to take on the team that took the great Pete Carrol dynasty down in the Rose Bowl of 2006. One drive and one play that forever left a stain on the Trojans memory. A stain that would be talked about every year for 12 years in even the pre game and the game itself last night. As we sat in section 20 row 91 seat 115 looking over the stands and vast sea of red and the shear will of the crowd to drain every ounce of sanity out of every play the Longhorns ran well it was amazing. Moving to see this fanbase act as one. To unite and to support for four quarters of a defensive battle. Two overtimes and a kick that will be talked about as much as the Rose Bowl of 2017 against PSU. I don’t see a lot of difference quite frankly.
The game was a defensive delight albeit there were a few drops by our receivers and Sam Darnold through a few he probably would want back but he more than makes up for it. You could just feel in the crowd as our red zone offense kept failing that the Texas Longhorns were one break away from making this they game to win and boy did they take advantage of that in the late fourth quarter. You could feel it in the air. You could see it on that last TD drive by the Longhorns and their freshmen quarterback staging a fantastic last drive to win it. Leaving only 32 seconds on the clock give or take.
Well, as we now know 30+ seconds is all Sam Darnold and the Trojan offense need to get into position to win it or tie a game these days. He is very cool under this type of pressure and comes to life in a way where many young quarterbacks would fade away and take a knee thinking it was an impossible task. Sam lives for these opportunities.
Can’t say enough about the Trojan Defense today. They played lights out for the most part. Biggie Marshall was all alone most of the game which is tremendous pressure and at the same time what a show of confidence by Clancy Pendergast to leave him in single coverage. Yes there were passes completed on #8 but he was in position for almost all of them which is a great tribute to him and the secondary. Did you all see #45 out there in the first half? Porter Gustin playing on 3 days rest from toe surgery with two screws implanted in his big toe. He played with a lot of heart.
A new hero emerges in our Freshmen Kicker, McGrath. He missed his first ever attempt yet nailed the rest of the night capping off a 2 overtime game winner from 40+ yards out to win in at the end of the second OT. Not a bad night rookie!
To the Texas Longhorn fans you should be proud of your team and you definitely have a new QB. He’s tough, he’s aggressive and has good mobility. Your future is bright and with Herman as your coach your defense will be highly motivated knowing your offense is moving up the ladder.
See you in Austin in 2018…..at least you don’t have to wait 11 years for a rematch