No. 11 Longhorns receive lots of hype heading into season opener against Rice

The No. 11 ranked UT Football team is receiving a lot of hype heading into this season.

Head coach Steve Sarkisian still has to decide on a couple of key position battles as we head into the season opener on Saturday, Sept. 2 against Rice.

"I love football! This is the best time of the year, man! I mean, the fall is awesome," Sark said.

That sentiment is shared by his team, and they are the preseason pick to win the Big 12.

"I think around this time I think the whole university is pretty fired up about Texas Football. We have to give them a reason to be excited," said Quinn Ewers, quarterback.

"I feel like we're just happy as a team overall. Like I said that chemistry with the team, you can just feel it," said Xavier Worthy, wide receiver.

Texas, a 35-point favorite over Rice, shouldn't be tested much in Saturday's home opener. What will be intriguing is UT's ongoing search to fill the massive void at running back, left by NFL draftees Bijan Robinson and Roschon Johnson.

"What is that gonna look like? How is that going to feel? And I think that's going to be a little bit of a process for us, and that's ok. I think they've got great players around 'em. They don't have to go in and try to (give) some superhuman effort. They just need to do what they've done throughout practice," said Sark.

Weknow Quinn Ewers is QB1, but with no depth chart released Monday morning, we're still not 100% sure who will be his primary backup Saturday. It sounds like Maalik Murphy and Arch Manning are still competing.

"Maalik and Arch, right now, they're both doing well. So, who do we feel like, come Thursday, is the guy to kind of earn the opportunity to be the backup this week, that'll be who the backup is," said Sark.

And while this more cohesive defense sounds ready to roll, we probably won't learn too much about this Texas team until week 2 in Tuscaloosa.

"I do think we're pretty good. We'll find the outcome in December how good we are, but I think we're pretty good! Now we need to go play like it," said Sark.

The Longhorns and Owls will kick off the season Saturday, Sept. 2 at 2:30 p.m. over at the DKR Stadium.