Christina’s Corner: Alabama game is a chance at writing a new story


Assad Malik/The Daily Texan

Coach Steve Sarkisian watches unranked Texas host No. 1 Alabama.

Christina Huang, Double Coverage editor

Many Texas fans do not hold fond memories of the 2010 BCS Championship Game and for good reason too. That fateful day in January 2010 was the last time Texas football participated in a national title game. Alabama’s 37-21 win over Texas gave the program its first national title under Nick Saban — Saban has led the Crimson Tide to five more national championships since then. 

While Alabama has been on the rise since the 2009 season, Texas has been struggling to stay afloat. Alabama is 151-17 since playing for the 2009 national title. Texas is 84-67 in that same time frame. 

Saban’s been at the helm of the Crimson Tide since 2007, while Texas has had multiple (and often tumultuous) coaching changes. 

At Mack Brown’s final press conference as Texas head coach in 2013, he candidly explained why he chose to leave the program. 

It’s time for Texas to get back in the mix like we were from ‘04 to ‘09,” Brown said. “And that was a wonderful run, a lot of fun. We haven’t lived up to those expectations since 2010.”

The 2004-9 years were filled with some of the program’s most iconic moments. Texas narrowly beat Michigan 38-37 in the 2005 Rose Bowl, after a late field goal by Dusty Mangum. And of course, Texas beat USC 41-38 to win the 2006 BCS National Championship, thanks to a last minute touchdown by Heisman finalist Vince Young. 

Saturday’s game is a chance to write a new narrative, to bring Texas football back to its former glory. Even though the game has no bearing on Big 12 standings, if played well enough to win, it could catapult Texas back into college football glory. 

“One of the biggest mistakes people make is (thinking) that this game is going to define our program,” Texas head coach Steve Sarkisian said on Monday. “It might. It might not. I’m more concerned about the way we play the game. My goal is to be in Dallas on December 3rd. This game has no impact on that.” 

And yes, Sarkisian is exactly right. The Alabama game means nothing when it comes to deciding which teams will play in December’s Big 12 Championship. But it helps provide an answer to the question of whether Texas is trending back in the right direction, or if the last decade of Texas football is truly the new normal. 

While there will be extra media attention with ESPN’s College GameDay and FOX’s Big Noon Kickoff visiting town, Sarkisian is focused on making sure that his team is locked in on playing football the right way. 

“I want to make sure that our guys play our style of football, our brand of football and do it the way I know we’re capable of doing it,” he said.

Saturday’s Alabama game is the first true chance this season to see what exactly Sarkisian’s style of football will look like in 2022. And maybe, just maybe, it’ll be enough to beat the team that has haunted Texas for so long.