Good news could be coming soon for the Longhorns defense

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Tom Herman Longhorns Kansas St

AUSTIN (KXAN) — For the first time in over the month, there’s some potential good news on the Longhorns injury front.

Texas head coach Tom Herman said on Monday’s Big 12 conference call that Caden Sterns, B.J. Foster, DeMarvion Overshown, Jeffrey McCulloch and Jordan Whittington are progressing and could be ready to play after the bye week against Kansas State.

The Longhorns desperately need some help in the secondary — it doesn’t take much more than watching Texas play defense to figure that out.

The Longhorns rank 126th out of 130 teams in passing yards allowed and 80th overall in SP+ defensive efficiency. The pass rush has been close to non-existent at 1.63 sacks per game which ranks 97th in the country.

“We’re not good. We need to be better. I think the off week will help. We have to do a better job as coaches…we’ve got to put them in position to make plays,” Herman said about the defense after the 37-27 loss to TCU.

Sterns, a sophomore, hasn’t played since game four against Oklahoma State after an All-Big 12 freshman season. Foster and Overshown have been in and out of the lineup since the Red River Showdown. Senior linebacker Jeffrey McCulloch left the OU game with a dislocated shoulder.

In the last three games, the Texas defense has given up 1,515 yards of offense and 119 points.

Freshman playmaker Jordan Whittington hasn’t played since the season opener against Louisiana Tech while recovering from sports hernia surgery.

Staring at a setback of a season, Texas (5-3, 3-2) will take all of the help it can get to close the season strong in the final four games of the regular season.

Not all of the injury news was rosy.

Punter Ryan Bujcevski will have to work his way back from a broken collarbone suffered on a fake punt during the third quarter against TCU. He hasn’t been ruled out for the season, according to Herman. Chris Naggar and Cameron Dicker are competing for the punter position.

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