It wasn’t pretty, but Mack Brown added another Holiday Bowl victory to his resume as his Texas Longhorns topped the Cal Golden Bears 21-10 in San Diego. The formula was familiar. Texas relied on defense for most of the game, ran the ball frequently especially late, and needed David Ash to make a few plays along the way. He was far from perfect, but Ash hit enough throws and made enough plays to win the game and finish a rare complete game at QB.
The Texas defense did their job, allowing just ten points and a total of 189 yards while forcing four Cal turnovers. They allowed a field goal midway through the first quarter and a touchdown drive on the Golden Bears’ first possession of the second half, but Jeff Tedford’s offense found tough sledding otherwise.
Ash struggled early but did avoid turnovers, unlike Cal QB Zach Maynard to lost a fumble and an interception. Ash scored the game’s first touchdown on a pass from Jaxon Shipley after completing his first two vertical throws in the second quarter. Then, with Texas trailing 10-7 early in the third, he followed three runs with a 47-yard strike to Marquise Goodwin to put the Horns up for good.
The Texas run game also found its legs late. After running for single digit yards in the first half, they reached triple digits in the second with Malcolm Brown and Cody Johnson leading the way. Johnson found the end zone on the Horns’ final scoring drive, converting a Zach Maynard lost fumble after a 37-yard Goodwin run.
Mack Brown’s team finishes 8-5 in a second consecutive trying season and now looks forward to their first conference season without Texas A&M with the hope that Ash and his young offensive line continue to grow in the spring and summer.