17 Sep

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Texas notes and quotes ahead of Big 12 opener

Texas head coach Tom Herman, quarterback Sam Ehlinger (11) and the Longhorns get ready to take the field against Rice (Photo courtesy of Texas Sports).

Compiled by Steve Habel, Senior Contributing Writer

AUSTIN, Texas – The Longhorns are now onto the beefy part of their schedule — Big 12 Conference play.

Here are some notes and quotes from Texas head coach Tom Herman’s press conference in advance of the 12th-ranked Longhorns’ Big 12 opener against Oklahoma State on Saturday at Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium:

• Herman said center Zach Shackelford (foot), Collin Johnson (hamstring) and linebacker Joseph Ossai (shoulder) are all probable for the Oklahoma State game.

“Zach will be fairly limited in practice tomorrow,” Herman said. “Joseph sprained his shoulder; he will put a brace on and practice tomorrow. Collin will practice tomorrow as well.”

• Herman also confirmed that safeties B.J. Foster (hamstring) and DeMarvion Overshown (back infection) will be out this week.

“Our goal for both of them would be the week after the bye week,” Herman added.

• Saturday’s game marks the 34th all-time meeting between Texas and Oklahoma State. The Longhorns hold a 24-9 advantage in the all-time series, but have been edged out by Mike Gundy’s Cowboys in the last four matchups.

Gundy is 7-2 in his nine seasons against Texas.

D'Shawn Jamison (5) breaks away for a touchdown (Photo by Don Bender/Horns Illustrated).

• Herman lauded his kickoff return team for “going all out” to help D’Shawn Jamison get loose for a 97-yard touchdown in the final minute last week against Rice. It was Texas’s first kickoff return for a touchdown since 2012.

“We’ve got starters that are on that team that jog out there, and they're fighting and blocking like it's the opening kickoff of the Super Bowl,” Herman said. “That's how intense they were. You don't see that a lot at many places in the country when the game is certainly decided. We could have easily told D'Shawn to fair catch it or guys could have taken the play off – just really proud of how hard they played on that play.”

• The Longhorns are 14-6 all-time against Oklahoma State when playing in Austin.

• Herman said that defensive end Ta'Quon Graham “might have had his best game at Texas”, and added that fellow defensive linemen Keondre Coburn and Malcolm Roach “continue to be disruptive.”

Keondre Coburn (99) and Malcolm Roach (32) celebrate a play during Texas' win over Rice (Photo courtesy of Texas Sports).

• Texas’ 57-point victory over OSU (71-14) in 1996, in the first season of Big 12 Football, still stands as the largest margin of victory by either team in the series’ history.

• Oklahoma State is the only Big 12 program that Texas did not beat at least once during Herman’s first two seasons as head coach on the Forty Acres.

Steve Habel is a senior contributing writer for Horns Illustrated. He has covered Texas sports since 1989 and was this magazine’s senior editor for 24 years. You can follow him on twitter @stevehabel .