Crystal ball: How did Bohls fare on UT predictions?
time for our annual review of — i.e., apologies for — the college football predictions concerning the Texas Longhorns written in this space. They were offered back in August, when we didn’t know how to pronounce Daje Johnson — and Bryan Harsin didn’t know how to use him — and we thought the quarterback position would be settled before Week 12 and Mack Brown would have Texas closer to 2013 future prominence than 2011 false promise. So here goes: Then: Ash will start every game and will be drastically improved over last season.
Now: OK, every game but one. And he dramatically upgraded his performances in eight of his 11 games.
Then: He will whittle his interceptions from eight to seven and raise his touchdown total from four to 15.
Now: Very close. Ash did cut those interceptions to seven and hiked his touchdown total to 17.
Then: His completion percentage will increase to 62 percent, up from 56.6.
Now: Even better. His accuracy rose to 67 percent.
Then: Ash will have one interception returned for a score. Now: Not a single one. Then: Case McCoy will play often — but rarely in the first half, barring injury — and will make one key scramble for a first down in a Big 12 game.
Now: He took just six firsthalf snaps all season — all in the final 94 seconds of the second quarter against TCU — until his lone start against Kansas State. Don’t remember a big scramble, but I do recall several critical passes in the Kansas game and 17 straight completions versus Kansas State.
Then: Texas will have its first 1,000-yard rusher in five years in freshman Johnathan Gray, even though he will have fewer
carries than Malcolm Brown.
Now: The Horns would have had a 1,000-yard runner if they had been smart and allowed Gray to have more than nine carries in five of his first seven games, when he totaled only 161 yards. Bad misuse.
Then: Gray will break at least three runs of more than 50 yards, will score 12 touchdowns and will run for 1,134 yards.
Now: We weren’t in the neighborhood because his longest of the year was for 49 yards. Joe Bergeron stole all the touchdowns, leaving just three for Gray and 683 yards.
Then: Brown will grind out 943 yards and score 10 touchdowns.
Now: An ankle injury kept the sophomore on the sidelines for almost nine games, limiting him to 316 yards and four scores.
Then: Bergeron will rush for 685 yards and seven touchdowns.
Now: It almost seemed as if Bergeron had as many touchdowns as he did yards. He crossed the goalline a staggering 16 times and ran for 565 yards.
Then: Texas will have three running backs go over 100 yards in the same game, probably against Kansas.
Now: Bergeron and Brown both topped the century mark in the opener against Wyoming, when D.J. Monroe dashed for 36 yards. That was as close as they came.
Then: The leading receiver will be Jaxon Shipley, with 66 catches for 1,045 yards and seven scores. But he will miss two games with injury. Shipley also will throw for a touchdown.
Now: Shipley had 51 catches for 649 yards. He had six, not seven, TDs, played every game and didn’t complete one of his three passes.
Then: Mike Davis will be up and down but will finish with 52 receptions (he had 54) for 723 yards (909) and five (seven) touchdowns.
Now: We were in the ballpark, but Davis flourished and was the real offensive MVP this year.
Then: Marquise Goodwin will have 36 catches for 420 yards.
Now: Try 22 for 272 yards.
Then: The best freshman receiver will be Daje Johnson, followed by Kendall Sanders.
Now: The explosive Johnson was by far the best. No one was second.
Then: No tight end will have more than three touchdowns.
Now: What’s a tight end? D.J. Grant led with two scores, including the game-winner against the Jayhawks.
Then: The Wild formation will be just as wild without Fozzy. Gray will star in it.
Now: It was more mild than wild. Fozzy, we missed you.
Then: The freshman of the year will be Gray. The runner-up for that award will be defensive tackle Malcom Brown.
Now: I’d go with Gray, as the leading rusher. Johnson would be the runner-up.
Then: The fan favorite who will reach cult status will be new defensive tackle Chris Whaley. Second on that list will be middle linebacker Steve Edmond.
Now: This is a tough one. I’d go with Gray, Johnson and linebacker Peter Jinkens, but Edmond did lead with 101 tackles and came on at year’s end.
Then: Texas will lose at least one game when its field-goal kicker misses in the closing seconds. Nick Jordan and Anthony Fera will divide up the duties. Put Jordan down for six field goals in eight attempts, Fera for 12 in 15 tries.
Now: Fera did miss a 41yarder in the three-point loss to West Virginia, and Jordan was wide on two big 25-yarders against TCU. Jordan finished 8 of 13, Fera 2 of 4 in one of the team’s biggest disappoint- ments.
Then: Mykkele Thompson will become the special teams star, return one kickoff for a touchdown and block two kicks. Vaccaro will block one. Quandre Diggs will score on a return, too.
Now: Thompson did block two kicks, but he never ran back a kickoff. Vaccaro did not. Nor did Diggs, though he did return a blocked extra point against Oklahoma.
Then: The defense will record two shutouts.
Now: Just one. Thank you, New Mexico.
Then: Defensive end Alex Okafor and Vaccaro will be consensus All-Americans.
Now: Vaccaro was named to Pro Football Weekly’s All-America team, and both were AllBig 12 selections.
Then: Texas will lose to West Virginia and Kansas State. Now: Texas lost to both. Then: Texas will go 10-2 and go to the Cotton Bowl to play LSU.
Now: A Cotton Bowl berth against LSU seemed like a lock even on the night of the finale, but Southeastern Conference finagling and Northern Illinois’ emergence cost Texas A&M and Oklahoma more prestigious bowl slots, pushing highly disappointing 8-4 Texas to the Valero Alamo Bowl.