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Strong optimistic Longhorns can handle latest round of dismissals


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That list includes running back Joe Bergeron, defensive back Chevoski Collins and running back Jalen Overstreet. Also bounced from the program, Strong said Sunday, are receivers Montrel Meander and Kendall Sanders, who were charged with second-degree felony sexual assault in July. Two other players were dismissed last spring.

Combined with the departure of linebacker Kendall Thompson, a senior who was shifted to a medical scholarship because of recurring injuries, the Longhorns 2014 roster looks a lot thinner at receiver, running back and defensive back than it did last month.

A case could be made that Strongs team has enough concerns that Texas, an 8-5 squad last season, will be hard-pressed to retain its No. 24 ranking in the coaches preseason poll through its nonconference schedule of North Texas (9-4 last season), Brigham Young (8-5) and UCLA (10-3). The UNT game, in fact, could be a rude awakening for Texas new regime if oft-injured quarterback David Ash is not on top of his game in the Aug. 30 opener.

Just dont try to sell that idea to Strong, who will not embrace lack of depth, in light of recent player departures, as an excuse for poor play in August and September.

Its not like, because we suspended guys, were going to walk into this camp like we dont have anybody. We have players, Strong said. Now, its a matter of us developing them.

Read more here: http://www.star-telegram.com/2014/08/03/6015994/strong-optimistic-longhorns-can.html?rh=1#storylink=cpy

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Strong is absolutely correct when saying that Texas has plenty of talent. The question is how quickly he can mold them into a cohesive unit. I don't think that there's any doubt that by conference time they'll be plenty tough. But, it could take a little while to turn a finesse player into a tough player.

Unless injuries or inexperience hit hard at one position, especially if that position is quarterback, they should be in the Top 25 teams in the country. I just hope that we can gel quickly before the Longhorns grasp their new system.

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