The voodoo of the Jones has been off for years, but the engine got kicked a bit on Saturday and it sputtered into near vintage form. I’m investigating some sort of hex that may have been placed on the stadium in 2009 that may be the issue.
However, adhering to the adage that every blind squirrel finds a nut, the Big 12 actually made the great decision for once to give us a second night game in a row at home. Against the Longhorns.
What do the fates say?
Danger, crisis; liberation.
The Longhorns slugged it out with West Virginia this past Saturday and lost due to a 2 point conversion called by a peyote-addled Dana Holgorsen. It’s safe to say, coming into the game this weekend, they’ll be mad! Particularly Sam Ehlinger, if his Twitter account is any indication. Texas’ defense has been suspect as of late, and Kingsbury/Johns are going to have to figure out how to best exploit it. The biggest question mark is who will be taking the snaps, Bowman or Duffey? A healthy Bowman makes you feel great going into the game, but a somewhat injured Bomwan or a healthy Duffey has to give you caution. Tech completely abandoned the comeback routes in the second half of the OU game when Duffey came in. I think one could safely connect the dots that Duffey can’t hit those routes, and based off his performance Saturday, throwing over the middle & making reads may not be his strength either. Duffey has an incredible amount of talent, and the coaching staff should have enough in-game data points to put together a plan for him; it’s just up to Duffey.
The biggest factor coming into the game, though, is Jones AT&T Stadium and the crowd. Everyone needs to show up again. Everyone needs to stick through the game. Kingsbury has done a great job winning on the road, more so than past coaches, but the Jones has lost its shine, and it needs to come back. Make it a black hole again. Make it a rift between dimensions. Make it weird. Have the crowd give their energy to the team, and have the team give the crowd a reason to be fired up. I think Kingsbury has shown more than enough growth this season to the point where it would take a catastrophic ending to the season for him not to stay. But returning the Jones to its status as a gigantic stone quicksand pit for ranked teams is the feather he needs to put in his cap.