Strong focused on defensive improvement

AUSTIN - After a devastating road loss to California on Saturday, Texas Longhorns head coach Charlie Strong said each of his assistant coaches will be "evaluated in the next few weeks."

Fans have turned their ire towards defensive coordinator Vance Bedford. Through three games, two against Power 5 opponents, Bedford’s defense has been shredded.

"What's frustrating, it still comes down to fundamentals and technique and placing them in position to have success," Strong said Monday.

Currently, Texas ranks 105th in scoring defense in the nation out of 128 teams giving up an average of 34.7 points per game. That number is skewed though thanks to a 41-7 shellacking Texas gave to UTEP. Against Power 5 teams California and Notre Dame, Texas is allowing a staggering 50 points per game.

While defense has never been the strong suit of the Big 12, the Longhorns’ defensive problems have been obvious against top schools. Texas is giving up an average of 386.3 yards per game, 70th in the nation and fifth in the ten team Big 12.

One of the big problems the Texas defense is facing is lack of turnovers. Through three games this year, the Longhorns have not intercepted a single pass and recovered just one of six opponent fumbles. All the while, Texas has thrown three interceptions and lost one fumble.

All of it has Strong moving to take a more active role in the defense moving forward.

"I can get more involved. I will be more involved," Strong said.

Strong isn’t afraid to make changes midseason to his coaching staff. Last year, he demoted play caller Shawn Watson in favor of receivers coach Jay Norvell. He brought in a full-time offensive coordinator, Sterlin Gilbert, in the offseason and the returns have been immediate and big.


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