Mack Brown Monday Press Conference Transcript
Opening comments: Our guys enjoyed the week off, and they also really enjoyed watching college football across the country. Watching the games, you see the upsets and how the dynamics of college football have changed. Players and coaches must understand that none of us know the outcome of a game and that is why you must play as hard as you can.
On the scheduling of the Arkansas game: I thought it would be a chance for us to say thank you to Coach Royal and Coach Broyles for all they've done for college football. They are both in the Hall of Fame and have both won National Championships. I hope this week they get all the attention they deserve for all their accomplishments as coaches and what they mean to college football. Very seldom do coaches that have meant so much to the game get credit for what they have done.
On Arkansas quarterback Matt Jones: Matt is a large guy that can play like a running back. He has also improved his passing game. So much of their passing game is on play-action, and they do a great job of controlling the line of scrimmage, the ball and the play clock. Matt is a guy that can make a difference.
On Texas' match-up with Arkansas: It will be very difficult for us to run and protect because they will have eight guys in the box most of the time. With our young offensive line and inexperience at quarterback, they could cause us some problems. Two of their best defensive players are their corners, so they will match up well with our receivers. I think team depth and conditioning will be a factor, and this will be a fourth-quarter game.
On last week's game preparations: We had three practice sessions this past week and a couple areas of concern were stopping the running game and being more consistent offensively. New Mexico State ran the ball well against us, and Arkansas is much better at running the ball, so we need to improve on stopping the run in order to win the game on Saturday. Offensively, we just need to be more consistent. We were pleased with our kicking game and thought it was the best thing we did last week.
On Coach Royal's feelings about this game: I know Coach Royal is excited because he likes this game. This was a huge game in his career. He and Coach Broyles were friends throughout the time they competed against each other, and they have stayed really close friends, which doesn't happen much in college football. For Coach Royal to be able to walk back out on the field as an honorary coach and shake Coach Broyles' hand would have to bring back a lot of great memories.
On success after open dates: We are 16-1-1 after open dates, so we have been very successful. I don't think it's best to have a break at the start of the season. You'd rather have a break in the middle of the season, for example between Kansas State and Oklahoma, because your players are tired and may have more injuries. We have felt very good about our performances after open dates, but Arkansas will be a tough, physical game that we need to be ready for.
On game day position rotations: We will not decide position rotations until the end of the week. We want to see how the guys practice and how things progress throughout the week. We will create a plan that best fits and will help us to win on Saturday. The most important thing is that we win, not how we substitute.
On the current players' knowledge of the rivalry: This is not a modern-day rivalry, so our guys are not fully aware of the publicity this game used to get. The history of the game is important to the fans, but what is important to our players is that Arkansas is a really good team, and if we aren't ready to play, we will lose.