AUSTIN (KXAN) — The Longhorns begin the season with a 1-0 record for the first time under head coach Tom Herman after a comfortable 45-14 win against Louisiana Tech.
Below is our complete game coverage of the Longhorns’ season opener.
Live Blog (Saturday, 6:15 p.m.)
The long wait for a Longhorns football season is over with Texas kicking off the 2019 season against Louisiana Tech at 7 p.m.
Texas enters this match up with the Bulldogs as a near three touchdown favorite, according to odds makers. The Longhorns are ranked in the top ten of the national polls for the first time since 2009, bringing some extra excitement to the season.
Finishing with 41 touchdowns, Longhorns quarterback Sam Ehlinger vaulted himself into the Heisman conversation during the 2018 season. He’ll have several returning weapons at wide receiver to spur the offense. Seniors Collin Johnson and Devin Duvernay will be Ehlinger’s security blankets.
- Texas to honor Cedric Benson with moment of silence prior to Louisiana Tech kickoff
- Running backs Ingram, Whittington healthy heading into season opener
On defense, Texas is breaking in at least five full-time starters. The secondary will be something to watch with two new starters at cornerback.
Texas Opening Drive: First Quarter
What happened: Longhorns wide receiver Devin Duvernay dominated from kickoff to the end zone. Starting with a 36 yard kickoff return, Duvernay touched the ball on six of the drive’s seven plays, capping it off with a four yard touchdown pass from Sam Ehlinger.
Score: Texas leads 7-0
Louisiana Tech Opening Drive: First Quarter
What happened: Louisiana Tech was able to move the ball down the field on the Longhorns defense amassing a 11-play, 51 yard drive, but the Longhorns defense held at their 26-yard line. Bulldogs kicker Bailey Hale missed a 43 yard field goal to end the threat.
Score: Texas leads 7-0
Texas drive, 7:30 to go in first quarter
What happened: Longhorns running back Keaontay Ingram had some injury questions coming into this game, but has been used a steady amount. Ingram has three carries for 33 yards. Texas went for it on fourth down and three. Ehlinger found Collin Johnson open for the first down, but Johnson fumbled the ball near the Louisiana Tech 25 yard line. The Bulldogs recovered.
Score: Texas leads 7-0
Louisiana Tech drive, 4:53 to go in first quarter
What happened: Louisiana Tech decided to test Jalen Green, the Longhorns young cornerback, and the Texas sophomore was up to the challenge. Matched up with Louisiana Tech’s top receiver, Adrian Hardy, Green forced two incompletions. Green has excellent coverage on a deep ball aimed toward the endzone. Tech’s drive ended at their own 48 yard line when sophomore DeMarvion Overshown sacked quarterback J’Mar Smith.
Score: 7-0 Texas
Texas drive, 1:50 to go in the first quarter
What happened: After months of speculation, Texas is showing off its freshman weapons. Running back Jordan Whittington and Jake Smith were both involved in an 11 play, 74 yard drive that ended in a Collin Johnson touchdown reception. Ehlinger found Smith and Whittington on back-to-back plays marching the Longhorns into the red zone. Last year, Texas coach Tom Herman said he wanted more speed from his offense and the freshmen are providing it.
Score: 14-0 Texas leads
Louisiana Tech drive, 13:30 to go in the second quarter
What happened: The Longhorns have their first turnover of the 2019 season. Tech running back Justin Henderson was stripped by newcomer defensive lineman Jacoby Jones. Longhorns safety Brandon Jones recovers at the Bulldogs’ 37-yard line.
Texas drive, 11 minutes to go in second quarter
What happened: Texas went quick strike after the turnover. It took two plays for the Longhorns to go 37 yards for the touchdown. Sophomore Brennan Eagles scored the first touchdown of his Longhorns’ career on a 28 yard pass from Ehlinger.
Score: 21-0 Texas leads
Louisiana Tech drive, 10:26 to go in second quarter
What happened: Louisiana Tech was able to make another drive into Longhorns’ territory aided by a pass interference call on Longhorns sophomore defensive back Kobe Boyce. Tech kicker Bailey Hale missed a 43 yard field goal that would’ve put the Bulldogs on the board.
Louisiana Tech drive, 4:36 to in second quarter
What happened: The Longhorns defense is making things happen. On Tech’s second play of the drive, Jalen Green came off the end and deflected the J’Mar Smith pass. Linebacker Joseph Ossai intercepted the ball off the tip setting the Longhorns up in great scoring position.
Texas drive, 4:04 to go in the second quarter
What happened: The Texas offense couldn’t muster a first down after the turnover. That set up sophomore kicker Cameron Dicker for his first field goal attempt of the season. Dicker was successful from 43 yards away.
Score: 24-0 Texas leads
Texas drive, 1:38 to go in second quarter
What happened: The Longhorns got their first shot at running a two minute drill after a Louisiana Tech punt spotted the ball at the Longhorns’ 29 yard line. Texas went on a six play drive taking the ball to the Louisiana Tech 30 yard line. Dicker missed a 47 yard field goal with seconds to go in the half
Score: Texas leads 24-0
Texas quarterback Sam Ehlinger is putting together one of his better performances as the Longhorns starting quarterback with three touchdown passes. In 2018, Ehlinger threw three total touchdowns against West Virginia and four against Texas Tech. Every other game, Ehlinger threw two or less touchdowns.
For all the questions about the Texas defense, the unit looked good in the first half limiting Louisiana Tech to 26 rushing yards. The Bulldogs haven’t entered the red zone yet and missed two 40+ yard field goals.
Start of the second half
It looks like a tradition is brewing at Darrell K. Royal Texas Memorial Stadium. Soon after the Longhorns entered the field to start the second half, they were serenaded by the fans and their cell phones.
Texas opening possession, second half
What happened: Ehlinger is hitting all of the right notes in the season opener. In a little over two quarters, the Longhorns quarterback has completed 66% of his passes for 236 yards and four touchdowns. Ehlinger added his fourth touchdown finding Eagles for his second score of the night early in the third quarter.
Score: 31-0 Texas leads
Texas possession, 6:10 to go in third quarter
What happened: This drive was all about Keaontay Ingram. Ingram drove the Longhorns down the field totaling 51 yards on carries and receptions. Ingram scored on a one yard run for the fifth Longhorns touchdown of the night.
Score: 38-0 Texas leads
Louisiana Tech possession, 2:44 to go in third quarter
What happened: The Bulldogs were able to get on the board early in the fourth quater on a five yard touchdown pass from J’Mar Smith to Malik Stanley. The Longhorns defense was still playing most of their starters as Louisiana Tech was able to move the ball down the field on a nine play, 75 yard drive. This was Louisiana Tech’s first drive that reached the red zone.
Score: Texas leads 38-7
Texas possession, 13:31 to go in fourth quarter
What happened: Sam Ehlinger’s night is over at the beginning of the fourth quarter. Ehlinger completed over 73% of his passes, finishing with 276 yards and four touchdowns.
Texas possession, Late fourth quarter
What happened: Following an interception from DeMarvion Overshown, the Longhorns had a short field with the second team offense. Back-up quarterback Casey Thompson scored on a two-yard run. This drive featured a heavy dose of quarterback turned running back Roschon Johnson. Johnson totaled 25 yards getting the Longhorns to the two-yard line.
Score: 45-14 Texas wins