Cole Gautsche

The New Mexico Lobos put on an exciting performance in Bob Davie’s debut as head coach, putting up 66 points against Southern in a game that had all the makings of a track meet.

The only two meetings between the Longhorns and the Lobos have ended with the Longhorns winning both games 47-0, but if the Longhorns want to extend their streak to 3 games they need to follow a simple game plan.

1. Don’t give up big plays

In week one New Mexico accounted for 347 yards on the ground, with four players amassing 65 yards apiece. Freshman quarterback Cole Gautsche put himself on everyone’s radar after his eight- rush, 88-yard performance against Southern, proving that his athletic ability could make him a player to watch throughout the season. While Texas should have no problem dispatching the Lobos, the Longhorns should beware of New Mexico’s big play ability.

2. Force the pass

The New Mexico quarterbacks threw for 70 yards and one touchdown on seven of 10 completions as a unit last Saturday. Senior quarterback B.R. Holbrook hasn’t shown much in his four years with the Lobos. His stats last season weren’t anything to brag about, as he completed only 59 percent of his passes, throwing four touchdowns to seven interceptions. In short, the Longhorns need to force the Lobos to pass the football. If the score gets too ugly, or Holbrook is forced into compromising situations by pressure, expect to see freshman quarterback Cole Gautsche get a bit of playing time in New Mexico’s new option offense. When Holbrook and Gautsche realize they aren’t getting around Jeffcoat or Okafor and have to make throws from a small window in the pocket, expect a slew of turnovers to come the Longhorns’ way. If Texas can force the Lobos to throw the football, good things will likely happen.

3. Keep Running

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. In week one the Longhorns followed the game plan and totaled 280 yards on the ground, with David Ash completing 74 percent of his throws. Sophomore backs Joe Bergeron and Malcolm Brown did exactly what was expected of them against Wyoming, each eclipsing 100 yards rushing. The Lobos gave up 500 points to only 144 scored last season. The Longhorns need to carry the football and carry it often to wear the Lobos down. This will undoubtedly open up the passing game for Ash to build upon his solid week one performance. The main plan for the offense should be to run fast and often against a New Mexico team that is outmatched.

1. Demarcus Rodgers
Junior Demarcus Rogers is the leading rusher returning for a New Mexico offense that amassed just over 1,300 yards on the ground as a team last season. Rogers looked impressive in week one, putting together a stat line much like the Longhorns’ backs, with 13 carries for 103 yards and a touchdown. Rogers possesses all the tools to succeed in the Lobos new option offense. He’s of a very stocky build, low to the ground, and has showed glimpses of big play ability with long runs. With an inconsistent signal caller at the helm, Rogers should get a lot of carries against a vastly superior Texas defense. He will have all the opportunity he needs to help his team pick up yards and points, but it will be up to him to shine.

2. Cole Gautsche
Gautsche looked very good with his legs in week one, as he rushed eight times for 88 yards and two touchdowns, including a 47 yard touchdown run. He only threw two passes in that game which suggests he’s most likely going to be wanted against Texas to find big openings to capitalize on. Gautsche is a big kid at quarterback, coming in as a 6-foot-4, 227 pound freshman. His arm hasn’t been seen enough for the Longhorn faithful to worry about it, but his athletic ability has been put on display for everyone to see and should be taken into consideration if he sees any amount of playing time in this game. Senior B.R. Holbrook will likely get the majority of snaps in this game, but his inconsistency could provide an opportunity for Gautsche to get in and show what he can do against the big boys.

3. Joseph Harris
Finding an individual defensive player to watch on New Mexico is a tough job. New Mexico gave up 500 points last season, which averages comes out to almost 42 per game. Although they don’t have much to brag about on either side of the ball, linebacker Joseph Harris is definitely a sleeper pick to watch out for on Saturday. He had 55 total tackles last season, with one sack. Those numbers don’t jump out at anyone, but the team leader in tackles had 85, so his numbers look a little more solid in comparison. Against Southern in week one Harris had four tackles and returned a fumble for a touchdown. At 6-foot-2 235 pounds, Harris is a guy that passes the eye test and should warrant a few looks come Saturday. On a team with not much to watch when it comes to defense, he could surprise a few people.