SAN ANTONIO (KXAN) — The 2020 Texas Longhorns will remember the Alamo Bowl in what has been an unforgettable college football season.
Somehow college football reached the bowl stage of its season, surviving canceled game after canceled game to finish the year with bowl games and (hopefully) a national champion.
The Longhorns fell short of their goals of a championship, so they’re settling for a bowl date in San Antonio for the second straight season — this time against the Pac-12’s Colorado Buffaloes.
How to watch Texas vs. Colorado in the Alamo Bowl
Kickoff: Tuesday at 8 p.m. CT
Location: Alamodome, San Antonio
Radio: Listen to Craig Way and KXAN’s Roger Wallace on the Longhorn Radio Network. Find your station.
Streaming: The game is available on the ESPN App.
COVID-19’s impact on the end of the UT football season
This will be Texas’ third game in the last eight weeks after COVID-19 issues canceled the Longhorns’ game against Kansas on two separate dates. Texas finished off its regular season with a blowout win over Kansas State in Manhattan on Dec. 5.
Then, the program got hit by COVID-19.
Longhorns head coach Tom Herman says the team is still dealing with “some COVID issues”, going into Tuesday’s game. The Texas team that takes the field Tuesday will be filled with young players and limited experience, due to COVID-19 and opt outs.
Two weeks ago, Joseph Ossai became the fifth Longhorns team captain to opt out before the end of the 2020 season. Sam Cosmi, Caden Sterns, Chris Brown and Ta’Quon Graham are all forgoing remaining eligibility to focus on their professional football futures.
Another team captain, offensive lineman Derek Kerstetter, is recovering from a season-ending ankle injury, suffered against Kansas State. Longhorns quarterback Sam Ehlinger is the only healthy captain still playing with the 2020 team.
Despite the depleted roster, Herman says he isn’t concerned about his young players’ approach to the bowl game.
“We’ve been practicing with these guys the last 10 days. Almost all of these guys played those positions in the Kansas State game. There’s not a whole of concern in terms of who is out there. We’ve had a good nine days of practice,” Herman said.
Colorado will be playing only its sixth game of the season with the Pac-12 regular season schedule not kicking off until November. Colorado started the season 4-0 before losing its regular season finale to Utah. The Buffaloes are playing in their first bowl game since 2016 — an Alamo Bowl loss to Oklahoma State.
The former Big 12 foes, Texas and Colorado, will be meeting for the first time since a 2009 conference contest, which the Longhorns won in Austin.
Head coach Karl Dorrell has sparked new life into the Buffaloes program in his first season in charge. Dorrell has identified talent and placed it in positions to succeed. Dallas native Jarek Broussard has responded from a season-ending knee injury in 2019 to lead the Buffaloes offense from the running back position.
As for the undisputed leader of the Texas Longhorns, this could be his final game with the program. Sam Ehlinger has been at the quarterback position for the past four seasons, guiding the Texas offense. Due to the NCAA’s free pass on eligibility this season, Ehlinger could return for a fifth year in 2021.
Ehlinger didn’t shoot down the idea of returning to Texas while speaking to the media last week. Herman says he expects to talk with his starting quarterback after the Alamo Bowl.
“We hadn’t really talked about it. We had a few guys decide to come back for a second senior year and I would expect Sam and myself to have those conversations after the game. I know this game is important to him and he didn’t want to be distracted by the decision-making process,” Herman said.
Tom Herman’s bowl game success
The Longhorns head coach is perfect in bowl games during the early stage of his head coaching career. Herman is taking Texas to its fourth straight bowl game.
- 2015: 38-24 win against Florida State (at University of Houston) | Peach Bowl
- 2017: 33-16 win against Missouri | Texas Bowl
- 2018: 28-21 win against Georgia | Sugar Bowl
- 2019: 38-10 win against Utah | Alamo Bowl