Did you know that Texas is 101-17-3 all-time in season openers? Or that the Longhorns were 15-1 in that first game under Mack Brown?
Did you know that the Longhorns are 7-1 in games aired on the Longhorn Network?
Did you know that Texas is 25-2-1 in first games under a new head coach, but only a 3-2 mark more recently under Brown, John Mackovic, David McWilliams, Fred Akers and Darrell Royal?
We’re spending these next 11 days examining Texas’ 2014 schedule.
Game 1: Aug. 30
TEXAS VS. NORTH TEXAS
7 p.m., DKR, LHN
North Texas — which is picked to win the West division of Conference USA (Louisiana Tech, Rice, Southern Miss, UTEP and UTSA) — returns only nine starters. That’s the second-fewest in the FBS, so it’s hard to see them coming to Austin and spoiling Charlie Strong’s Texas coaching debut. The Mean Green are replacing three-year starter Derek Thompson at quarterback with veteran backup Andrew McNulty or junior college transfer Josh Greer. A decision is expected in the coming days.
Also gone is Brandin Byrd, who rushed for 1,000 yards as a senior.
The battle in the trenches will be the one to watch in this game. Four offensive linemen return for the Mean Green.
The last time the Longhorns and Mean Green played (Sept. 2, 2006), it was a 56-7 stomping for Texas to open the 2006 season, and it pushed the defending national champions’ winning streak to 21 games. This was Colt McCoy’s first college start — and his very first pass was a touchdown to Limas Sweed. Texas bottled up North Texas’ running game, surrending only 28 yards. Talk after the game centered on a No. 1 vs. No. 2 showdown in Columbus the next week against top-ranked Ohio State.
Last year — Dan McCarney’s third team at North Texas, the Mean Green crushed UNLV I the Heart of Dallas Bowl. That was the program’s first bowl win in 11 years. And the Mean Green’s nine wins tied for second-most in program history.
Texas vs. North Texas: FYI
Storylines: (1) It’s Charlie Strong‘s debut. (2) It’ll be David Ash‘s first game since Sept. 21, 2013. (3) New coaching staff, new offense, new defense, new faces at receiver, offensive line, defensive line, in the secondary and at kicker and punter.
All-time series: Texas, 9-0
Last time: Texas, 56-7 (2006)
Last year: Texas was 8-5, 1-2 in non-conference, and 4-2 at home (wins over New Mexico State, Kansas State, Kansas and Texas Tech; losses to Ole Miss and Oklahoma State). North Texas was 9-4, 2-3 in non-conference, and 3-3 on the road (wins at Louisiana Tech, Southern Miss and Tulsa; losses at Ohio, Georgia and Tulane).
Numbers game: The Horns have won their last three games vs. North Texas (in 2002, 2004 and 2006) by a combined score of 148-7.
Texas vs. North Texas, in Austin: 9-0
Texas vs. North Texas, in Denton: Never have played there.
Kirk Bohls says: Texas wins.
Cedric Golden says: Texas wins.
Vegas says: Texas by 25.
Tomorrow’s game breakdown: BYU.
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