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Texas picks up another big time recruit

After a rough loss in Manhattan, Kansas, on Saturday, Head Football Coach Charlie Strong was able to pull out a recruiting win on Sunday afternoon when Cameron Townsend, a 2015 4-star OLB from Missouri City announced his commitment to the Longhorns, choosing Strong’s team over Oklahoma and Oregon State.

Townsend’s announcement makes him the 18th commit in the class of 2015, currently ranked 16th in the country and first in the Big 12 by ESPN.

At 6 foot 1, 205 pounds, Townsend has a similar, though slightly leaner, build to current starting linebacker Jordan Hicks, who despite being plagued by injuries the past two seasons has been one of Texas’ most reliable forces on defense. Townsend said one of Texas’ biggest pulls was the fact that he had “a good opportunity to play early” with Hicks’ departure after this season with the coaching staff recruiting Townsend for Hicks’ position.

On film, Townsend shows his explosiveness off the snap and quick feet, proving his reported 4.63 40 time. Townsend also showed good physicality, unafraid to go head to head with the big guys on the line as well as with receivers in the slot. On the pass rush, he comes off the edge well and is able to elude blockers on his path to the quarterback. He also makes good use of a long wingspan to make tackles when one arm is occupied by a blocker. He also shows great natural athleticism, as shown in a game his junior year where he hurdled a lineman en route to a sack.

Townsend also does a great job on the delayed blitz, which accounts for his high tackles-for-loss count.

Though, a few times on his junior year highlight tape he seemed unwilling to finish tackles, applying one hit then letting his teammates bring the ball carrier down. While he can get away with this against high school competition, a tough college running back would make him look silly. He will have to bulk up in the spring and summer, but has the frame and work ethic to get it done.

Overall, Townsend has raw talent and athletic ability that he has been able to get by on in high school. He described his current coaching staff as “offense-minded,” so it could be fun to see what Strong and defensive coordinator Vance Bedford are able to turn him into with some closer technique coaching. Strong has proved this season that he isn’t afraid to play- and even start- true freshman, so don’t be surprised to see Townsend getting quality reps next fall if he can show a good understanding of the defense.

Texas picks up another big time recruit

After a rough loss in Manhattan, Kansas, on Saturday, Head Football Coach Charlie Strong was able to pull out a recruiting win on Sunday afternoon when Cameron Townsend, a 2015 4-star OLB from Missouri City announced his commitment to the Longhorns, choosing Strong’s team over Oklahoma and Oregon State.

Townsend’s announcement makes him the 18th commit in the class of 2015, currently ranked 16th in the country and first in the Big 12 by ESPN.

At 6 foot 1, 205 pounds, Townsend has a similar, though slightly leaner, build to current starting linebacker Jordan Hicks, who despite being plagued by injuries the past two seasons has been one of Texas’ most reliable forces on defense. Townsend said one of Texas’ biggest pulls was the fact that he had “a good opportunity to play early” with Hicks’ departure after this season with the coaching staff recruiting Townsend for Hicks’ position.

On film, Townsend shows his explosiveness off the snap and quick feet, proving his reported 4.63 40 time. Townsend also showed good physicality, unafraid to go head to head with the big guys on the line as well as with receivers in the slot. On the pass rush, he comes off the edge well and is able to elude blockers on his path to the quarterback. He also makes good use of a long wingspan to make tackles when one arm is occupied by a blocker. He also shows great natural athleticism, as shown in a game his junior year where he hurdled a lineman en route to a sack.

Townsend also does a great job on the delayed blitz, which accounts for his high tackles-for-loss count.

Though, a few times on his junior year highlight tape he seemed unwilling to finish tackles, applying one hit then letting his teammates bring the ball carrier down. While he can get away with this against high school competition, a tough college running back would make him look silly. He will have to bulk up in the spring and summer, but has the frame and work ethic to get it done.

Overall, Townsend has raw talent and athletic ability that he has been able to get by on in high school. He described his current coaching staff as “offense-minded,” so it could be fun to see what Strong and defensive coordinator Vance Bedford are able to turn him into with some closer technique coaching. Strong has proved this season that he isn’t afraid to play- and even start- true freshman, so don’t be surprised to see Townsend getting quality reps next fall if he can show a good understanding of the defense.

The Longhorns, who have not won on the road against Kansas State since 2002, have allowed an average of 42 points in their last three games in Manhattan and lost the last two by an average margin of 21.5 points.

Photo Credit: Chelsea Purgahn | Daily Texan Staff

The last time Texas won in Manhattan, Kansas, sophomore quarterback Tyrone Swoopes was learning to write cursive, head coach Charlie Strong was at South Carolina and people were listening to music on Walkmans.

Chris Simms threw two touchdown passes, Dusty Mangum hit the go-ahead field goal and Marcus Tubbs, who currently works on Strong’s staff, blocked a last-second Wildcat kick to seal a 17-14 victory back in 2002.

The Longhorns haven’t won in “The Little Apple” since.

“We hope to change that,” senior wide receiver John Harris said. “It was just tough for Coach Brown to beat. Maybe it’s because, when the leagues were split, the two teams didn’t play each other as much.”

The Longhorns have only been to Manhattan three times in the 12 years since they last won there. But, that alone doesn’t explain how a program like Texas, which was revered as one of the top teams in the nation for much of that span, has struggled so much against a school like Kansas State, known for its 75-year-old coach and his love of walk-ons.

In those three visiting losses to the Wildcats, the Longhorns have surrendered an average of 42 points per game, with the two most recent defeats coming by an average margin of 21.5 points.

“I think it’s more of a mental thing for the Texas team that’s been there,” Harris said. “Knowing that you haven’t won there or knowing that this team kind of has you rattled mentally is the thing we have to get over.”

This year’s trip to Manhattan, especially being Strong’s first, may be the toughest yet for the Longhorns. Kansas State comes into the game ranked No. 11 in the country and sits atop the Big 12 standings as the only team that remains undefeated in conference play.

“You admire that program because they’re just tough, smart and dependable,” Strong said. “When I say dependable — they’re a very disciplined football team: not many penalties, not many turnovers.”

As always, head coach Bill Snyder has the Wildcats playing mistake-free, hard-nosed football again in 2014.

Fresh off a 31-30 win over then-No. 11 Oklahoma last weekend, Kansas State comes into its matchup against Texas ranked 13th in the nation in scoring offense, thanks in large part to senior quarterback Jake Waters.

Waters, a prototypical dual-threat who spent two years in junior college before joining the Wildcats, has thrown for 1,431 yards and nine touchdowns this season while rushing for another 371 yards and seven scores.

“Right now, he’s playing like he’s one of the best quarterbacks in the Big 12,” senior defensive back Quandre Diggs said. “It’s just another opportunity to go out and play against a great quarterback.”

Diggs will get that opportunity Saturday, and, if all goes to plan, he and his teammates will leave Manhattan with a rare win.

Kansas center Jeff Withey (5) gets past Kansas State guard Shane Southwell to put up a shot during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 22 in Manhattan, Kan.

Photo Credit: The Associated Press

Fresh off their first conference victory, the Longhorns head to Manhattan, Kansas to face the Kansas State Wildcats. Although Kansas State is ranked No. 18 in the latest Associated Press college basketball polls, the Longhorns seem to be catching them at the perfect time, as the Wildcats have lost two straight Big 12 games after winning their first four. However, K-State’s Fred Bramlage Coliseum, also known as “The Octagon of Doom,” is always a tough place for visiting teams. The Wildcats are returning to “The Octagon” for the first time since suffering their only home loss of the season, a 55-59 loss to Kansas, and will be looking to end their current losing streak and defend home court. Without a doubt, the big question in this matchup is how will this young Texas team, in search of its second straight Big 12 victory, handle the pressures of playing in a hostile environment? Here are some statistics that should paint a clear picture of what the Longhorns will be up against Wednesday night:

72: Points per game the Wildcats have scored on average in games played at home this season. This could spell trouble for the Longhorns, who are averaging just over 61 points per game in games played away from the Erwin Center. If Texas wants a chance to upset the Wildcats on their home court, it will need to hold them well below this scoring average.

64: The national rank in team rebounds per game for Kansas State, which averages just a shade under 38 a game. Texas has fared slightly better, ranking 30th in the nation with 39 per game. Although this appears to be an area of advantage for Texas, the Longhorns will be without their leading rebounder, sophomore forward Jonathan Holmes. Holmes, who is averaging 7.1 rebounds per game, is out for the next several weeks with a broken hand injury.

14.8: The number of home victories the Wildcats have averaged per year over the past five seasons, including a 71-62 win in 2010 over a Texas team ranked No. 1 at the time. Since head coach Frank Martin took over during the 2006 season, the Wildcats have won at least 15 homes games in all but two seasons.  

11: Home victories for the Wildcats this season. Kansas State has lost only one game at the Bramlage Coliseum so far this year, a four-point defeat to No. 2 Kansas. However, only one of those victories came against a ranked opponent, when the Wildcats defeated the No. 22 Oklahoma State Cowboys 73-67 earlier this month.

7: Total games Texas has played in “The Octagon” under head coach Rick Barnes. The Longhorns have performed fairly well in the coliseum’s hostile conditions, holding a respectable 3-4 record in those games. However, they have not won in Manhattan since 2008.

6: The number of road games left on the Longhorns’ schedule, including Wednesday’s game. Over the past five years, Texas has averaged just over seven victories a year away from the Erwin Center during the regular season. If they want to match that total, they will need to win the rest of their road games, starting Wednesday in “The Octagon.”

Kansas State head coach Bill Snyder walks onto the field during warm-ups before a game against Baylor on Saturday, Nov. 17, in Waco, Texas.

Photo Credit: The Associated Press

Bill Snyder has been a thorn in the side of the Longhorns during his career as head coach at Kansas State, both during his current tenure (2009-) and his previous era (1989-2005) in Manhattan.

Snyder has a 4-2 record against the Longhorns with Kansas State holding a 7-5 overall series advantage. The Wildcats are the only conference foe who have a winning record against Texas.

Snyder, now 73, led the Wildcats to their only Big 12 Conference title, a 35-7 victory over Oklahoma, in 2003. He narrowly missed two other titles, one in 1998, a three-point loss in double overtime to Texas A&M, and one in 2000, another three point loss to top-ranked Oklahoma.

With a win over Texas, the Wildcats will clinch their second Big 12 title and Snyder will almost certainly win the Big 12 Coach of the Year award. Snyder already has three Big 12 COY awards, 1998, 2002 and 2011.

In addition, as a coach for the Wildcats when they were a member of the Big 8 conference, Snyder was Coach of the Year three times in 1990, 1991 and 1993. He was a Walter Camp Coach of the Year in 1998, a Woody Hayes Coach of the Year in 2011 and a Paul “Bear” Bryant Award winner in 1998.

When Snyder first arrived in Manhattan, Kan., in 1989, the football program was not in good shape. In its history, Kansas State had a 299-510 record, easily the worst record in Division 1 college football at the time. The school had only four winning seasons during the 45 years prior to Snyder’s hiring and were in the midst of a 27-game losing streak.

At his original retirement in 2005, Snyder had taken Sports Illustrated’s “Worst Program in the Country” and built an impressive program. As a parting gift, Kansas State University renamed its football stadium the Bill Snyder Family Football Stadium.

During his first tenure, Snyder went 136-68-1 with one Big 12 title. In 1998, the Wildcats went 11-0 in the regular season rising to their first ever No. 1 ranking. Snyder was considered to be the most prolific coach in college football at the time thanks to the impressive rebuilding he was able to do.

After a few down years, Snyder retired in 2005 and was replaced by Ron Prince, then the offensive coordinator at the University of Virginia.

Prince went 17-20 in three seasons — with two wins over Texas in the span — and in 2009 Snyder was back, becoming one of the only coaches to coach at the same institution for two separate terms and one of the only coaches to coach at a stadium bearing his namesake.

Printed on Friday, November 30, 2012 as: Bill Snyder revitalizes KSU, brings program into spotlight

Sophomore corner back Quandre Diggs faces off against Iowa State wide receiver Chris Young on Saturday. Diggs is one of Texas’ many young threats and has been a starter since he was a freshman. Both the offense and defense will lose seniors after this season, but the core group of players will remain on the team.  

Photo Credit: Lawrence Peart | Daily Texan Staff

At this time last year and the year before, it would have been much easier to look at the season ahead than it is now.

Texas is 8-2 with hopes of a Cotton Bowl appearance and its first 10-win season since 2009. But with as many returning starters as the Longhorns will have next year, a strong finish to this season would set the Longhorns up for a run at a national title next season.

Texas last captured a national title in 2005, it was seven straight wins to end the 2004 season that spurred the Longhorns onto their championship chase the following year. A bowl victory would be crucial toward making Texas a legitimate national title contender in 2013. An upset over Kansas State in Manhattan, Kan. ­— where the Longhorns haven’t won since 2002 — would be monumental.

If Texas improves as much between now and the beginning of next season as it has over the last month, there’s no reason the Longhorns can’t run the table next year.

“The only thing that’s important when it comes to football is the product we put on the field,” head coach Mack Brown said. “For two weeks, the product wasn’t very good. It needed to get better. That’s what we did. Now we just have to finish strong.”

David Ash is no Vince Young, but he’ll be a junior next year like Young was in 2005. He’ll still have Malcolm Brown, Joe Bergeron and Johnathan Gray in his backfield — although Malcolm Brown will have to make it through the season healthy for Texas to have a shot at going 13-0. Unless Mason Walters goes pro, wideout Marquise Goodwin will be the only starter Texas’ offense will lose.

“He plays as well as any other quarterback in the country,” Mack Brown said of Ash. “I look forward to him leading us forward.”

Texas will lose Alex Okafor and Kenny Vaccaro, likely first-round picks next April, to the NFL. But if Jackson Jeffcoat, recovering from a torn pectoral muscle, declines to join them, the Longhorns will be one of the nation’s best defenses.

Between Nick Jordan and Anthony Fera, the Longhorns may still not have a reliable placekicker. But with guys like Ash, Gray and linebacker Jordan Hicks ­— who may be asking for a medical redshirt by this year’s end ­— returning, Texas will have a chance to go all the way.

After facing TCU this Thanksgiving, Texas will have a chance to play spoiler to Kansas State’s national title aspirations when the Longhorns play the Wildcats in Manhattan, Kan. on Dec. 1.

Maybe next season it’ll be Texas’ hopes for a national championship that other teams will be trying to spoil.

Printed on Wednesday, November 14, 2012 as: Horns have potential for next season

1. Kansas State: The Wildcats solidified their control of the Big 12 by demolishing Texas Tech in Manhattan. Kansas State’s schedule gets a lot easier now as the season nears the closing stretch. Its reaming opponents are 8-10 in conference play, with Baylor and TCU combining for seven of those 10 losses. Only Oklahoma State and Texas appear likely to stand a chance against Kansas State, and both of those games are at home. The Wildcats are in complete control of the Big 12 and the conference is theirs to lose, which does not appear likely at this point.

2. Oklahoma: The Sooners suffered their second home loss of the season to Notre Dame, and the only consolation appears to be that it was not a conference game. It’s not that the Sooners are poor, but that their opponents were just better. Kansas State and Notre Dame are both very tough, mentally and physically, and were able to bully the Sooners off the line of scrimmage. Home losses are very rare for the Sooners: they lost two home games between 2005 and 2011. The major concern for Oklahoma is that it was held to 103 yards rushing against Kansas State and Notre Dame combined, with the Irish limiting the Sooners to just 15 yards on the ground.

3. Texas Tech: It is becoming blatantly apparent that the Big 12 is Kansas State, then Oklahoma close behind, then everyone else. Those two teams have proven that they stand well above the rest of the Big 12 field. Texas Tech got hammered by Kansas State and only fell five spots in the human polls, and just three slots in the BCS. It is simply expected for everyone else to lose to Kansas State and Oklahoma. The Red Raiders are still a quality team, and could very well win 10 games in the regular season, but they will still have to look up at the Sooners and Wildcats.

4. Oklahoma State: Since losing to Texas in its conference opener, Oklahoma State has popped off three straight wins against the bottom of the Big 12. Now the Cowboys have to face Kansas State, West Virginia, Texas Tech and Oklahoma all in consecutive weeks. A road trip to Manhattan, Kan., doesn’t look good for the Cowboys’ win streak. Joseph Randle is the leading rusher in the Big 12, but his production will be tested against a Kansas State team that leads the conference in rush defense.

5. West Virginia: The Mountaineers had the week off to let their consecutive blowout losses marinate. West Virginia’s offense, which looked unstoppable through the first half of the season, is suddenly very pedestrian, mustering only 28 points in consecutive games. Its lowest output before these games was 31 points against Maryland in mid-September. A visit from Oklahoma is the only daunting task left on the Mountaineers’ schedule, so they could have a nice finish, but Geno Smith will have to find his early-season form again for that to happen.

6. Texas: Goodness. The Longhorns had pull out all the stops in order to get past Kansas in Lawrence. Since taking a nail bitter in Lawrence in 2004, Texas had outscored the Jayhawks by 154 points in four games, with two shutouts. Yet Texas had to bench David Ash and put in Case McCoy to top the hapless Jayhawks, who are in the midst of a one-win season. Things just continue to get worse for Texas, yet it continues to find ways to win games it may have no business wining. Texas hasn’t won a conference game by more than a touchdown this season and has games against Texas Tech and Kansas State still to go.

7. Iowa State: The Cyclones, with quarterback Steele Jantz hitting a groove, appear to be on their way to bowl contention if the rest of their schedule goes as expected. Only a home game against Oklahoma appears unmanageable. Six wins may not guarantee Iowa State a bowl game, so it will have some work to do to secure a bowl spot with only four games remaining.

8. TCU: The conference newcomers haven’t exactly had a warm welcome. West Virginia looked good before being blown apart twice, and TCU has been inconsistent, and that only got worse when quarterback Casey Pachall was arrested. TCU games have been festivals of turnovers. Sometimes the Horned Frogs are the culprits, sometimes they are the beneficiary. There have been at least three turnovers in all but one of TCU’s games.

9. Baylor: Baylor’s defense isn’t so bad. Yes, it may give up a few points and a few yards, but it’s not as bad as advertised. By holding Iowa State to a meager 35 points in it’s loss last week, Baylor has jumped ahead of West Virginia, and is now only allowing 52.5 points per game to the West Virginia’s 53. And it’s not like they give up a whopping 600 yards a game: the Bears are only allowing teams 599.5 yards per game. Who knows, maybe Baylor’s defense may rise up to abomination from crime against humanity before the season ends.

10. Kansas: The Jayhawks have been scrappy in their past few games, but their conference losing streak has now extended to 17 games. Kansas and Baylor play Saturday, in what is both teams’ best chance for a first conference win. The winner gets a little bit of pride and the loser may be looking at a winless conference schedule.

 

Nicole Dalton sets up a play for Texas. The Longhorns will face their biggest challenger for the Big 12 crown this weekend in Manhattan. The Wildcats have only dropped one match this season.(Daily Texan file photo)

Photo Credit: Elisabeth Dillon | Daily Texan Staff

Fresh off another Big 12 match sweep, the No. 9 Longhorns head to Manhattan, Kansas to face No. 14 Kansas State on Saturday night at 7 p.m. Last weekend the Longhorns swept TCU at home to bring their Big 12 conference record to 5-0 and season record to 12-3. They have yet to lose a set against a Big 12 opponent and are ranked first in the Big 12 by two games over Kansas.

The Wildcats are fresh off a sweep of fellow Big 12 opponent No. 22 Iowa State at home.  They are 16-1 on the season and 3-1 in conference play. Their only conference lost came at the hands of Oklahoma who was on a five game winning streak when they swept Kansas State in Manhattan.

Last season, the Longhorns went 2-0 against the Wildcats, sweeping them 3-0 in Manhattan before taking the series 3-1 in Austin. Texas is 27-7 against Kansas State. The Longhorns are a favorite not only to win this match-up against Kansas State, but also to win the Big 12 conference.

Directly after the game against TCU midweek on Wednesday, the Longhorn’s junior outside hitter Bailey Webster admitted that they were already looking forward to going on the road to Kansas State on Saturday.

“We are excited to continue,” Webster said. “Kansas State is a really good team.”

Webster, last season’s Big 12 Player of the Year, has been on fire all season.  Against TCU, Webster recorded 12 kills and hit an impressive .647. So far this season, she has 121 kills and is hitting .290.

Junior setter Hanna Allison hit over 2,000 assists against TCU, making her only the 11th person in Texas history to do so. She recorded a double-double with 10 digs and 36 assists. Her career assist total is 2,025.

The Wildcats are led by Junior middle blocker Kaitlynn Pelger who has been dominating all season. Against Iowa State on Wednesday, Pelger had 16 kills with a .556 hitting line. Pelger leads Kansas State with 216 kills on the season while hitting .379.

This is the third time that head coach Jerritt Elliott has opened Big 12 play with a 5-0 record, the other two seasons came in 2004 and 2009.

Printed on Friday, October 5, 2012 as: Horns face best Big 12 team yet

Bailey Webster led the Longhorns to their fourth consecutive win, giving them a 5-1 conference record. Webster had 15 kills on .778 hitting. The team had a season-high .463 hitting in the victory.

Photo Credit: Trent Lesikar | Daily Texan Staff

The Longhorns just keep rolling. They won their third-straight match in a three set sweep, beating Kansas State (25-17, 25-15, 25-20) on Saturday in Manhattan, Kan.

No. 10 Texas (12-4) had its most impressive and statistically efficient attacking day of the season, hitting .463 as a team. That hitting percentage made all the difference in the game, as the Wildcats (14-6) only hit .177. A .300 percentage point difference will almost always equal a win for the team on top of that equation.

Sophomore outside hitter Bailey Webster led the team’s attack with a career high .778 attacking percentage on her 15 kills. Freshman Haley Eckerman also enjoyed a double figure attacking day, adding 12 kills to the Longhorns totals and personally hitting .310.

The Longhorns’ pair of middle blockers, freshman Khat Bell and senior All-American Rachael Adams, had a strong showing on the court, posting nine kills each.

Junior Sha’Dare McNeal continued to make a huge impact in the Longhorns lineup after returning from an injury sustained in the Oklahoma game two weeks ago, contributing five kills from five swings.

The Longhorns great attacking resulted from crisp ball movement and setter Hannah Allison’s passing, who had 42 assists.

The Wildcats played the Longhorns close early on in the first set, until the Longhorns went on a 5-1 run in the middle of the game to take a 18-13 lead. The Longhorns mostly traded points with the Wildcats but took the set 25-17.In the second set, Texas had a hot start, jumping out to a 16-8 lead and eventually taking the game 25-15.

The third set was much of the same for the Longhorns, although Kansas State played them a little closer throughout. But Texas continued its roll to finish off the Wildcats 25-20.

In the win, the Longhorns also had a very good game on the defensive side of the net. Libero Sydney Yogi had 12 digs, contributing to the team’s high total of 38.

Texas had an excellent game, earning 61 out of their 75 points from kills, aces or blocks. Only 16 points came from unforced errors of Kansas State.

Texas has not dropped a set in its last 10 opportunities, and the Longhorns will look to continue that trend when they play Baylor on Wednesday.

Printed on Monday, October 17, 2011 as: Webster, Eckerman lead Horns to third consecutive sweep 

Texas seemingly fixed their road woes Saturday, easily disposing of Kansas State, 3-0, to win for just the second time in six matches away from home.
The Longhorns relied on a balanced attack and another strong performance from junior middle blocker Rachael Adams to roll over the Wildcats 25-21, 25-16, 25-12 in Manhattan, Kan.

Adams was active for Texas, finishing with a match-high 12 kills and an impressive 10 blocks — a career high. Junior Amber Roberson played efficiently for the Longhorns (10-5, 5-2 Big 12), adding 10 blocks with a .529 attack percentage as the outside hitter from San Antonio was a force on the outside.
“We got some great balance and production from all of our pin players, and it was great to see Amber play at such a high clip,” said Texas volleyball head coach Jerritt Elliott. “We are getting more confident and more relaxed when we play.”

The Longhorns spoke before the game about the need to battle the adversity that comes with playing in a hostile environment. With Texas trailing 20-15 in the first set, they did just that, stringing together a 10-1 run — including seven straight points to end the game, thanks to the timely play of senior outside hitter Juliann Faucette.

Faucette was instrumental in Texas’ run, putting up four kills and a huge block to silence Kansas State (9-9, 2-4) and take control of the match.
Freshman setter Hannah Allison kept the Wildcats guessing all night as she balanced the Longhorns offense with a match-high 31 assists.
“She showed a lot of guts tonight, coming back from an injury that she had on Wednesday, and she did a great job distributing the ball,” Elliott said.
Allison’s passing opened the gates for Faucette (eight kills) and Roberson on the outside and Adams and junior Jennifer Doris (seven kills) in the middle.
“Doris is playing the best she has ever played,” Elliott said. “That is a big component for us and our balance. I’m really proud of Jen for stepping up right now and playing at a high level.”

Texas extended its win streak over Kansas State to 14 matches. The Longhorns return to action Wednesday at 6 p.m. as they look to beat Brianne Barker and Oklahoma on the road in Norman.