Brown says losses not bad luck

By Cody Hale
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Jamaal Charles is tackled during Saturday's game against Oklahoma. Charles has been having troubles with fumbling all season long.
Media Credit: Stephen Durda
Jamaal Charles is tackled during Saturday's game against Oklahoma. Charles has been having troubles with fumbling all season long.

There are different ways of evaluating Texas football at the mid-point of the 2007 season.

Some would say that the No. 22 Longhorns are just unlucky and haven't had many breaks go their way. Others might contend that injuries have been the reason Texas is 0-2 for the first time in conference play since 1956.

Texas coach Mack Brown doesn't want to hear any of it.

"By saying we're unlucky is just a cop-out, this game isn't about luck," Brown said. "If you knock balls loose you should get on them. If you tip balls in the air you should catch them. We're not going to have any excuses."

One of his main issues involves the defense's lack of big plays.

"The fact is we're not forcing turnovers," Brown said. "We need to get better at our pass rush so we can pressure the quarterback."

Against Texas at the Cotton Bowl on Saturday, Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford completed 21-of-32 passes for 244 yards and three touchdowns. Rarely was Bradford pressured out of the pocket, and he was only sacked once while Texas quarterback Colt McCoy was sacked four times.

Bradford had enough time in the pocket to go through his progressions and find the open receivers. He connected with seven different Sooner receivers in the game.

Texas has also been turning the ball over too much, according to Brown, and he put some of the blame on the shoulders of running back Jamaal Charles, who has been plagued with turnovers all season, having lost four fumbles.

"If you've got [the ball] offensively, you've got to take care of it," Brown said. "I've been in so many discussions when a running back says, 'I'm tucking it away good.' Well, not if they're getting it. That's fact."

Both Brown and offensive coordinator Greg Davis hinted that Charles' play is currently being evaluated. Reducing his playing time or taking away his starting job isn't out of the question if his problems persist.

But Texas' coaches have been working with Charles on securing the ball better.

"We just need to find a way to get Jamaal into space," Davis said.

Any additional help Charles might need?
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