It would not be overly critical to say that the Texas Longhorns were one of the most disappointing teams in college football over the last decade.
More recently, that disappointment stemmed from the Tom Herman Era in Austin, where, despite a good deal of talent across the board, the Longhorns were never able to get over the hump and win a Big 12 championship or make the College Football Playoff.
That may seem like tough criticism but at the University of Texas, championships are an expectation, not a goal.
For former starting quarterback Sam Ehlinger, the program's shortcomings over that time hit close to home, being in the thick of nearly every major Texas moment during Herman's tenure.
So what kept the Longhorns from taking the next step? Ehlinger has a theory.
“That’s a tough question, I know we’ve been really really close," Ehlinger told 105.3 the Fan in Dallas. "It's almost like every year there’s like four or five plays if it goes the other way and we’re right there."
During his tenure, Herman's Longhorns went 32-18, with Ehlinger finishing his career with a 28-16 record as a starter -- far from the Texas standard, with disappointing loss after disappointing loss, stemming from those few select plays, derailing any chance for the program to gather momentum.
"So I would just say because it is those four or five plays, just attention to detail," Ehlinger said. "Obviously, the talent and skills are not an issue, but truly paying attention to details and making sure those small little plays don’t come back to bite you.”
It is an issue that has seemingly plagued the Longhorns since Colt McCoy's injury in the National Championship matchup with the Alabama Crimson Tide in 2009 but seemed to be particularly magnified while Herman was at the helm.
But it is also something that the program hopes it may have fixed, with the hiring of their new head coach, Steve Sarkisian, who just took over the program in January, and is in the midst of his first spring program with the Longhorns.
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