12 burning questions for 2022


The spring session of Texas Longhorns football is firmly in the rearview mirror. The emphasis of the program will now turn to summer conditioning and preparing for fall camp ahead of the 2022 college football season.

As it sits currently, Texas head coach Steve Sarkisian and his staff still have a multitude of questions that need to be answered. At the very top of the list will be the quarterback situation, but that won’t be handled until well into the fall prior to kicking off the season against UL-Monroe on Sept. 3 at Darrel K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium.

Other questions will revolve around the wide receiver rotations, the offensive line development, and plenty of uncertainties on the defensive side of the ball.

With the spring portion concluded following Saturday’s Orange-White game, regional editor Patrick Conn and Longhorns Wire site editor Cami Griffin tackle some of the biggest questions surrounding the program.

Will Quinn Ewers win the starting role prior to the season opener?

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  • I think ultimately Ewers will be the answer, however, I am not 100% sold that he will be the guy when they suit up to open the season. We saw this last year when everyone claimed that Casey Thompson would be the starter but Hudson Card was QB1 when the dust settled on opening weekend. I could definitely see another situation where Ewers isn’t the starter to open the season but ultimately takes over. — Patrick Conn, College Wire’s Regional Editor

  • While there wasn’t much separation between Hudson Card and Quinn Ewers in the Orange-White spring game, that was expected. Card has more experience and this is his second year being in Sarkisian’s system. However, Ewers will likely separate from Card throughout fall camp. This summer and fall will be crucial for his development and familiarity with Sarkisian’s system, and I fully expect Ewers to secure the starting role ahead of the season opener. The closer this battle remains, the more it appears to be Ewers’ job to lose. – Cami Griffin, Longhorns Wire editor

Who will emerge as Texas’ top pass rusher?

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  • The pass rush was a major problem last season for the Longhorns. They were led in quarterback pressures by Alfred Collins and DeMarvion Overshown with 15 each. Going into 2022, I would lean towards Collins being that guy once again. He is a freak of an athlete for someone his size. – Conn

  • I think the Texas coaching staff and the entire fan base hopes it will be Alfred Collins. A breakout season from him couldn’t come at a better time. Although if the Longhorns do land Ochaun Mathis via the transfer portal, I’d lean towards him. Texas’ sack leader last season was Ben Davis with 2.5, it can’t get much worse than that. – Griffin

Will the offensive line hold up?

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  • Someone referred to Texas’ offseason additions as buying a shiny new car with no engine. It’s hard to argue against that. The engine is obviously referring to the offensive line unit, who severely struggled last season. I expect them to take a step forward ahead of the 2022 season under Kyle Flood’s development. It’s too early to gauge how this group will look until Kelvin Banks, Devon Campbell and several other 2022 signees arrive at campus this summer. – Griffin

  • This is the $1 million question. Or perhaps the $50,000 question. The staff addressed this group in the offseason and now we await to see the results on the field. I would lean towards the unit being better than they were a season ago, which will help Bijan and wins whoever the quarterback job massively. – Conn

Will Bijan Robinson lead the nation in rushing?

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  • Can he? Yes. Will he? That depends on the development of the offensive line and quarterback positions. If Ewers/Card can become a legitimate threat through the air, along with the offensive line even just playing average (which is a step above last season), then the sky is the limit for Robinson. With all the playmakers on offense, it may limit some of Robinson’s touches, but he will still be the focal point. I suspect him to land among the top five in the nation in terms of rushing yards this season. – Griffin

  • Bijan Robinson is a talented back and he very well could be the nation’s leading rusher. However, I would lean towards No. 5 not being the top back in terms of rushing yards for one reason, the team has plenty of depth that will see the field. Sark will likely continue to use Roschon Johnson and Keilan Robinson along with Bijan. – Conn

Can the Longhorns have two 1,000-yard receivers?

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  • I think the simple answer is yes if the offense goes the way many anticipate. With Ewers under center, I believe the offense will have a prolific passing attack. Both Xavier Worthy and Isaiah Neyor could both eclipse the 1,000-yard mark and I wouldn’t be surprised if they challenge for a third. – Conn

  • Xavier Worthy nearly eclipsed 1,000 receiving yards last season with subpar quarterback play and Robinson on the sideline the final few games. However, their next leading receiver was Jordan Whittington with 377 yards who missed the majority of the season with injury. I’m more than confident in Worthy eclipsing 1,000 yards this season, but Texas may spread the ball around so much between the running back trio, Worthy, Whittington, Isaiah Neyor, Agiye Hall, Jahleel Billingsley, Ja’Tavion Sanders, etc. that it seems a bit of a reach confidently state two WR’s will surpass 1,000 yards. If I had to pick who it could be, I’d say Neyor due to his big-play ability. – Griffin

Which under the radar player should fans keep an eye on?

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  • There’s quite a few under the radar players who had solid springs such as Morice Blackwell (DB), Cole Hutson (OL), Vernon Broughton (DL) etc. — but I’ll go with EDGE Barryn Sorrell here. Texas desperately needs to improve their pass rush, and whether they land Ochaun Mathis from the transfer portal or not, keep an eye on Sorrell to step up at times. In the spring game, he delivered solid edge play with two pressures and set the edge well against the run. – Griffin

  • I am going to keep going with Troy Omeire until he leaves Texas or it actually happens. He has the size to be a problem for defenses but he just hasn’t been healthy the last two years. I still believe in his ability, the question is can this staff get him onto the field during the regular season. – Conn

Who will replace Cameron Dicker?

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  • While Cameron Dicker handled both kicking and punting duties in 2021, it will likely come down to two players to replace him. Bert Auburn to handle kicking and Isaac Pearson to be the new punter for Texas. – Conn

  • I’m not so sure that Bert Auburn has full control of this job yet. Will Stone will arrive on campus this summer, and he was the No. 4 kicker in the country for the 2022 cycle. This will be an interesting battle to watch. Isaac Pearson, however, seems to have the punting job locked down. – Griffin

Is Texas finally going to feature a pass-catching tight end?

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  • When you look at some of the top offenses around the country, the tight end is a big part of the offense. They are often too big for a cornerback to deal with on a consistent basis and too fast for a linebacker. Texas has three legit tight end options, give me Ja’Tavion Sanders to be the guy by seasons end. – Conn

  • Yes. Jeff Banks has to feel good about the tight end position this season. Ja’Tavion Sanders has seemingly taken the next step and has proven his five-star rating (not to mention, he showcased several acrobatic catches during spring practices), while Texas also landed a talented and experienced pass catcher in Jahleel Billingsley via the transfer portal . I expect both 6-foot-4 playmakers to be significant contributors, especially with their ability to be a mismatch in the red zone. – Griffin

Will Steve Sarkisian find a way to get all the talented running backs involved?

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  • Steve Sarkisian often states that he ‘has to find a way to get more of the running backs involved’ — and so far he’s lived up to his word this offseason so we’ll see. Speedster Keilan Robinson didn’t see the field enough last season, even though he averaged 7.2 yards per carry. It’s a must that he receive more touches, because I’m already confident in Bijan Robinson and Roschon Johnson to receive their share. – Griffin

  • Simply put, yes. Last year we saw the top three guys all see the field. The group will be led by Bijan once again with Roschon and Keilan being thrown in the mix. I wouldn’t be surprised if the offense drew up some specific plays for freshman Jaydon Blue as well. – Conn

Will any of the true freshmen contribute immediately? If so, who?

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  • I think numerous freshmen will contribute early on, and the most popular to watch will likely be along the offensive line. But I’m going to go with EDGE Justice Finkley here. The early enrollee has the size and high motor, and as evidenced during the Orange-White game, has already climbed the depth chart this spring. It’s yet to be seen if that’s a good or bad thing for Texas’ pass rush. – Griffin

  • Yes, we will see several true freshmen on the field but I am going to go with Terrance Brooks. The late Ohio State flip is right in line to see the field early on, especially if they have struggles on the boundaries. – Conn

Can DeMarvion Overshown become a top linebacker in the nation?

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  • It is certainly a possibility. For Overshown to be considered one of the best linebackers in the country he will need to focus on his missed tackle numbers. In the last two seasons, he has a combined 38 missed tackles. That leads the team. – Conn

  • Believe it or not, this is the first spring that DeMarvion Overshown has been fully healthy for Texas. He was once regarded as a fringe first round draft pick, so the talent is there. If he can shore up his tackling and stay healthy, the accolades will follow. He’s certainly one of the key leaders on this team and Texas needs him to play like it. – Griffin

Who emerges as the premier cornerback for the Longhorns?

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  • My knee jerk reaction was to say D’Shawn Jamison here due to the hype surrounding him this spring, but I’m going with Ryan Watts. The Ohio State transfer has the size and certainly looks the park at boundary. – Griffin

  • This answer could be the same as the freshman question, I really like Terrance Brooks as a boundary defender. However, I am going with Jahdae Barron. While he might be viewed as a nickel corner, I believe his game will rise to the occasion in 2022. – Conn

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