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How the Texas Longhorns graded out in their Big 12 road loss to Iowa State

Hookem
Iowa State wide receiver Jaylin Noel is tripped up by Texas safety Brenden Schooler during Saturday's 30-7 UT loss. Schooler led the team with 12 tackles and made a big play on special teams.

How Texas graded out in Saturday's 31-24 loss to No. 18 Baylor:

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Quarterbacks: F

Casey Thompson struggled again and didn't make it to the end of the first quarter. Hudson Card, who began this season as Texas' starter before getting supplanted, was inserted into the game and promptly led the Longhorns to their lone scoring drive and only lead. But that was the exception, not the rule. Consider how Texas' drives on the night ended: lost fumble, punt, punt, punt, punt, touchdown, punt, punt, punt, punt, punt, punt, lost fumble, punt. Card missed an easy touchdown to Xavier Worthy over the middle. He held the ball too long and paid the price for it, by way of either sacks or incompletions or, on one play, an intentional grounding penalty.

Go figure: In his first substantial playing time since Sept. 11, Card was 14 of 23 for 101 yards and a touchdown.

So far: Louisiana A-, Arkansas D, Rice A, Texas Tech A, TCU C, Oklahoma B, Oklahoma State F, Baylor C-, Iowa State F

Semester average: C, which dropped from a C+

Running backs: D

It was a rough night physically for Bijan Robinson, who had some highs (26 touches, led the team in catches and receiving yards, caught all eight targets and went over 1,000 rushing yards for the season), but also some pretty big lows. The last two weeks have been a struggle; Baylor held him to 43 yards in Waco, and in Ames he lost two fumbles, both of which led to Iowa State points, and allowed a sack when he failed to pick up a blitzer. And he was injured twice in the second half; the first time, he headed to the medical tent, and after the second time, he did not return. He surely now knows what perhaps the Big 12's best rushing defense looks — and feels — like.

Go figure: Robinson's 10-game scoring streak ended; it was the third-longest in UT history and was the second-longest active streak in the country.

So far: Louisiana B-, Arkansas F, Rice A+, Texas Tech A, TCU A, Oklahoma B, Oklahoma State B, Baylor C-, Iowa State D

Semester average: B-, down from a B

Wide receivers: F

Texas' receivers, as a group, have really turned in some duds over the last three weeks. There were only five catches on Saturday night from the unit, two apiece from Joshua Moore (32 yards) and Xavier Worthy (22) and an 8-yarder from Kelvontay Dixon. Moore, after a rough past week, had the catch of the night, a tough catch and run across the middle for 24 yards on UT's scoring drive. Worthy was targeted seven times but managed only two catches; his Iowa State counterpart, Xavier Hutchinson, had 96 yards and also threw a touchdown pass.

Go figure: Bijan Robinson's eight catches were as much as all other UT pass catchers combined.

So far: Louisiana A-; Arkansas F; Rice B, Texas Tech A-, TCU D, Oklahoma A-, Oklahoma State D, Baylor D-, Iowa State F

Semester average: C-, down from a C

Tight ends: F

Another week of virtual no-shows from this unit in the boxscore. Cade Brewer was targeted four times and caught two of them for a total of 3 yards. That's an average of 1.5 yards per grab.

Go figure: Brewer's other two targets were drops.

So far: Louisiana C-, Arkansas F, Rice B-, Texas Tech C, TCU F, Oklahoma B, Oklahoma State F, Baylor D, Iowa State F

Semester average: Holding steady at a D

Offensive line: F

Iowa State had five sacks. One of those was Robinson's fault. Part of the blame goes to Card's inability to manage the pocket and get rid of the ball, but the line did him no favors. There's never a good time for a penalty, but Texas' line managed to commit two of them on one play at one of the worst times possible: third-and-6 at the Horns' own 8-yard line. Tope Imade was called for being an ineligible receiver downfield and Christian Jones was flagged for holding. No matter, though, since Card threw incomplete anyway and the Cyclones declined both penalties. On the next drive, Jones was called for holding again, and again the Cyclones declined in order to force third-and-10; on third down, Iowa State sacked Card. It was that kind of night.

Go figure: The five sacks were the most Texas has allowed this season.

So far: Louisiana B-, Arkansas F, Rice B, Texas Tech A-, TCU C, Oklahoma D, Oklahoma State D-, Baylor F, Iowa State F

Semester average: D+, down from a C- last week

Defensive line: F

Things didn't go much better for the defensive line, either. Alfred Collins and T'Vondre Sweat were shaken up on back-to-back plays in the third quarter, Brock Purdy was sacked only once, and Iowa State running back Breece Hall ran wild, finishing with 136 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Collins had two hurries before he went down. Purdy had plenty of time to work with and completed 27 of his 38 passes.

Go figure: Ovie Oghoufo and Byron Murphy II were two of eight players who tied for fifth in tackles, with three

So far: Louisiana C, Arkansas D-, Rice B-, Texas Tech C+, TCU B-, Oklahoma D, Oklahoma State D, Baylor D, Iowa State F

Semester average: D+, down from a C-

Linebackers: F

A quiet night for the linebackers, who routinely led the team in tackles this season before Saturday night, when a pair of defensive backs led the way. DeMarvion Overshown and Jaylan Ford had four stops apiece and Overshown sent Hall to the bench late in the first half after a particularly hard tackle. Hall came back for the second half, though. Overshown left for some time as well with a lower leg injury.

Go figure: Overshown has been Texas' leading tackler throughout the season.

So far: Louisiana B, Arkansas C, Rice B, Texas Tech B, TCU B-, Oklahoma C, Oklahoma State F, Baylor D, Iowa State F

Semester average: Holding steady at a C

Secondary: D

Purdy threw for 252 yards and completed 71% of his throws. Nine of his 38 targets went to Xavier Hutchinson, who caught eight passes for 96 yards. He didn't catch a touchdown pass but he did catch the secondary on a trick play, a 49-yard scoring pass to Tarique Milton. Josh Thompson had a pair of breakups, including a notable one in the end zone on 6-foot-6 tight end Charlie Kolar, a two-time All-American. And Brenden Schooler led the team in tackles by a wide margin — 12 tackles, seven more than D'Shawn Jamison's five, which were second-most. If only Schooler had made 13, though; he whiffed on Hall's 47-yard touchdown run.

Go figure: All 12 of Schooler's tackles were solo stops.

So far: Louisiana B-, Arkansas B+, Rice B, Texas Tech C-, TCU C+, Oklahoma D, Oklahoma State B, Baylor C, Iowa State D

Semester average: C, down from a C+

Special teams: A-

How bad did Jeff Banks need a big game from his unit after the week he had? Texas' special teams delivered. Kelvontay Dixon made two big plays in the first half — downing a punt at the 1 and later blocking a Cyclones punt. Schooler got into the act as well, saving another Cameron Dicker punt from going into the end one; it was downed at the 2. Dicker's foot must be sore from 11 punts. He averaged 43.9 yards per kick, had a long punt of 59 yards and had four downed inside the 20, including those two inside the 5. All that was missing was a nice return or two and some extra points.

Go figure: Dicker didn't attempt a field goal against the Cyclones.

So far: Louisiana B-, Arkansas F, Rice A, Texas Tech C, TCU A-, Oklahoma B, Oklahoma State C, Baylor B, Iowa State A-

Semester average: B-, up from a C+ — the only position unit to improve its season grade this week.

Richard Tijerina