NCAAF Teams
Tom VanHaaren, ESPN Staff Writer 45d

New coach, but familiar issues return in Texas' season-opening loss

AUSTIN, Texas -- Maryland ruined the much-anticipated debut of Tom Herman at Texas in a 51-41 win over the Longhorns in Austin, Texas. The Longhorns suffered from many of the same issues that hurt them when they went 5-7 season in 2016, with defensive lapses, turnovers and missed opportunities.

The Longhorns started the game on a positive note with an interception for a touchdown by defensive back Holton Hill. That was the only lead the Longhorns would have in the game, though, as very little went right for Herman and his team after that.

Texas tried to fight back in the second half, scoring 20 points in the third quarter, but couldn’t overcome the 30-14 halftime deficit.

Both teams went back and forth, each blocking field goals and returning them for touchdowns, but the Terrapins had the more consistent offensive performance. After averaging 377.8 yards of offense last season, Maryland surpassed that production by the end of the third quarter with 394 total yards.

Texas quarterback Shane Buechele had a good showing, but the Longhorns didn’t get much help in the run game. Former Texas running back D’onta Foreman, now in the NFL, was sorely missed. Texas, which averaged 239.3 yards per game last season, did not crack 100 on Saturday.

The Texas defense gave up nearly 500 yards of offense to Maryland, with Terps quarterback Tyrrell Pigrome accounting for 175 yards passing with two touchdowns and 64 yards and a touchdown on the ground.

Before the first game of the Herman era, Texas fans described their feelings as humble optimism after last season’s performance. After the back-and-forth roller coaster of an opener, the cautious side of those feelings won’t go away.

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