The 12th-ranked Longhorns will meet Rice at Houston’s NRG Stadium on Saturday (7 p.m., CBS Sports Network). The eyes of Texas will be upon …
Ayodele Adeoye, Texas linebacker
In 15 games with head coach Mike Bloomgren, Rice has run on 57.2 percent of its offensive snaps. That philosophy may force Texas to play more linebackers than usual. UT defensive coordinator Todd Orlando has said Adeoye and Juwan Mitchell may see more playing time if that’s the case. Adeoye, a redshirt freshman, started in the Longhorns’ opener. In six career games, though, he has been credited with just one tackle.
Brennan Eagles, Texas wide receiver
After catching only one pass as a freshman, Eagles has emerged in his second season. He has eight receptions and three touchdowns in the first two games. He also leads the team with an average of 21.9 yards per catch, which ranks fourth in the Big 12. Against LSU, Eagles scored on a 55-yard catch. That touchdown was the longest scoring play of Tom Herman’s tenure and UT’s first 50-yard play since the 2017 season.
Anthony Ekpe, Rice defensive end
Ekpe, a graduate of Pflugerville Hendrickson, leads the Owls with a team-high 17 tackles. And no Owl had more than Ekpe’s six sacks in 2018. He recorded three of those sacks during a breakout game against North Texas, taking down standout quarterback Mason Fine each time. Rice is looking for its first sack of the season; the Owls have had only two quarterback hurries so far against Army and Wake Forest’s 35 pass attempts.
Austin Trammell, Rice receiver
An all-conference punt returner two years ago as a freshman, Trammel emerged as Rice’s top target as a sophomore. In 2018, he topped the Owls in receptions (62) and receiving yards (632). Those 62 catches ranked seventh in school history. This year, Trammel has 10 receptions for 107 yards. His 19-yard touchdown against Wake Forest is Rice’s only scoring catch of the season so far.