The aggressive, swarming Texas defense that showed up in the first half of tonight's Holiday Bowl game against Arizona State looks nothing like the clueless crew that stumbled through the final month of the regular season. What's new? Two fresh starters at linebacker helped: Roderick Mucklery and Jared Norton replaced defrocked starters Robert Killebrew and Rashad Bobino. Plus, the team has shown fire and intensity that has been missing for much of the season. The best evidence came on Muckleroy's sack that triggered the fumble that culminated with the crazy penalty on the Texas' sideline for touching a live ball that wiped out about a 35-yard loss and a turnover.
The unanswered question remains, "Who touched the ball?" Mack Brown dodged the issue on camera in his halftime interview but ESPN identified him as Chris Jessie, Mack's stepson. If that's truly his identity, here's guessing this will be Chris' last sideline pass to watch his stepdad's team play.
-- Jimmy Burch