Chat: Texas O, Tech D, ISU QBs, OSU

Thanks for all the questions this week. It was a fun chat as always. Here's the full transcript.

Got more to say? Shoot it my way in the Mailbag and you might see it here later this week. Time for a few highlights:

Dave (MD): Is it just me, or does it seem that Texas' wideouts can get behind the coverage almost at will? Why is this? Technique, play design, defenses paying too much attention to the run?

David Ubben: I don't know about "at will." There's no doubt that Shipley, Goodwin and Davis are getting a lot better. Part of it is the defense's necessity of paying attention to the run, too. We saw some nice play design against OSU. That's part of it. The TD pass to Shipley on the wheel route was perfection.

Dave (MD): That trick play OSU called on the last play of the Texas game was brilliant. For those who didn't see it, it was a Hook and Ladder with a couple of intermediate laterals to get the ball back to the QB, who then laterals all the way across the field to a man with no one around him. It went for a huge gain, but my thinking is, why not try that on first down? Sure the laterals are high risk, but with 29s left, 75 yards to go,and Texas surely playing their secondary deep, no one is expecting you to win. If they called it on first down, they end up in Texas territory with say 10-15s and 1 or 2 timeouts.

David Ubben: Interesting idea. That could have been interesting. The biggest reason is just to extend the game. OSU's regular offense had had a lot of success, and the clock stops on first downs. The probability of a turnover on that crazy play is pretty high, though OSU executed it to perfection. Why run the crazy play if there's still a decent chance your regular offense can get you in position for a hail mary?

Kevin (Dallas): Hey Ubbs...If Tech takes care of OU this weekend will it finally be because they have a good team or will it once again be because OU is down? Don't get me wrong, Id love to be the underdog all year.

David Ubben: Nah, if Tech wins this weekend, I'm buying the Red Raiders as an 8-9 win team, maybe more. As for the Sooners? They'll be in serious, serious trouble. It can be both.

Jeff (Huntsville): Ubbs, If WVU beats Texas by 14+ points...do they leap frog K State in the national polls...and more imprtantly in your Big-12 Power Poll, do they become #1?

David Ubben: Oh, most definitely. Whoever wins that game is the new No. 1. They'll have a better resume than K-State. Margin of victory doesn't really matter. That's a huge win for whoever gets it, and a better win than anything K-State will have.

Joe (Fort Worth) [via mobile]: The missed tackles by the Texas D has become very concerning since it's a month into the season and its still not cleaned up. Do you think that the reason it's still not cleaned up, because the level of competition by opposing offenses continues to improve each week or do you think this will continue to be the trend the rest of the year? Also, what is Texas' chance against WVU with a Texas D that cleans up the missed tackles vs. a D which still struggles with the tackling with all else being constant? Thanks Ubbs!

David Ubben: It's definitely a concern. It's been an epidemic and it's happened at every level of the defense. This week, Mack Brown said they had 12 missed tackles on seven plays and three of those led to an additional 109 yards of offense. That's huge. There's some level of what you said. Joseph Randle is harder to tackle than a lot of guys in this league. Still, that's step No. 1 to fixing what Texas' defensive issues are. They're 64th nationally in total defense.

Paul Rhoads (Ames, IA): Who do I start at QB against TCU, and Why?

David Ubben: Steele Jantz. He's going to keep the job, but it's going to be a short leash on Saturday, no doubt. Turnovers simply cannot happen for this team. If they do, he's going to be on the bench.

Kyle (Texas): UT/OSU game. Fumble, or no fumble?

David Ubben: Fumble, but the ball was at the bottom of the pile and the play was over. No clear possession. Daytawion Lowe reached in too late. Texas should have kept the ball but been called short of the goal line. Odds are high that UT punches it in on the next play. It was the wrong call, but OSU fans are wasting breath complaining about the call.

Crab 5 (Lubbock): What is Tommy Tuberville going to tell his team this week going into the OU game? Do you feel that because Tech is still not getting the respect that they deserve that they will have something to prove? Do you think that the Defense this year is legit or will it get exposed based on what you have seen?

David Ubben: Well, here's my deal on Texas Tech's defense: Is it the No. 1 defense in the country? No, absolutely not. Is it much improved? Absolutely. Is it a top 20 defense? Maybe. We'll find out soon. It'll be close. For now, Tech and TCU and Iowa State have had defenses as good as anybody in the Big 12, but they haven't matched up against the Big 12's best offenses yet. We'll find out soon enough.

Allan (Stillwater): Can you please discuss the anomaly that was OSU's defense against Texas. They were supposed to get dominated on the ground, but it was the "experienced" secondary that got beat all night. What does this mean for the Cowboys?

David Ubben: I was really impressed with James Castleman and Calvin Barnett up front. Way underestimated them. Great job against Texas' running game until they got worn down late. I don't know what's up with Brown and Gilbert, though. No picks for them and they've looked very average to this point.