SOUTH BEND, IN - SEPTEMBER 05: Jaylon Smith #9 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish sacks Tyrone Swoopes #18 of the Texas Longhorns during the second quarter at Notre Dame Stadium on September 5, 2015 in South Bend, Indiana. (Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)


Notre Dame 38, Texas 3: Horns up, Horns down

Posted September 5th, 2015

  • Horns Up
    Not an easy task after what we witnessed in South Bend. Let’s start with the Texas fans, who really represented the school well. Texas sold its allotment of 5,000 tickets plus many more. Longhorns fans made up about 30 percent of the announced crowd of 80,795.
  • Linebacker Peter Jinkens provided a glimmer of hope near the end of the first half when he sacked Malik Zaire for a 12-yard loss and then celebrated with a chest bump with teammate Tank Jackson.
  • Notre Dame did the Horns a favor by canceling contests in 2019 and 2020. That would qualify as a silver lining at this point.
  • Horns Down
    Three points in a season opener? This was Texas’ worst debut since the 1988 team lost 13-6 to Mississippi State. It was a unconscionable performance from a team that insisted in the offseason that it would be better.
  • Punter Michael Dickson’s first two efforts of the season went for 28 yards each. It was the perfect ending to Texas’ initial drive of the season, a three-and-out that lasted 62 seconds.
  • After passing to D’Onta Foreman, who reversed field, Tyrone Swoopes did not attempt to make a block. You’re 245 pounds, Tyrone. It’s OK to hit somebody there.
  • Cornerback Duke Thomas and safety Dylan Haines got their signals crossed on Zaire’s 66-yard touchdown pass to Will Fuller in the third quarter. It was a microcosm of Texas’ night. Lots of mistakes and not a lot of positive moments.

Best offensive play
As far as Texas is concerned, there wasn’t exactly a barrel full of options. So let’s go with the Swoopes’ 48-yard pass to John Burt in the third quarter. It led to Texas’ first (and, so far, only) points of the season, a field goal.

Best defensive play
Freshman linebacker Malik Jefferson burst through the hole and came up with a crunching hit on running back Josh Adams. Jefferson appears as good as advertised. In an otherwise disappointing team performance, Jefferson showed he is more than up to the challenge of playing in the middle.