Texas Football: Five takeaways from the Arkansas loss

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So much for a hot start to the Steve Sarkisian era at Texas.

No. 15 Texas traveled to face Arkansas in Week 2 in front of a sold-out crowd in what was expected to be a close battle. Within the first few minutes of the game, you could tell that luck wasn’t on the side of the Longhorns.

Arkansas dominated from start to finish and ultimately upset Texas by a score of 40-21. It was bad. Embarrassingly bad. There’s no way to sugar coat this type of performance.

The Razorbacks simply overpowered the Longhorns in the trenches. Texas’ defensive line, which is considered a strength for the Longhorns, has some questions to answer after allowing 333 rushing yards to Arkansas.

Although it was the first road start of redshirt freshman quarterback Hudson Card’s young career, the offensive line left him hardly any chance to succeed. The play calling also failed to make up for the offensive line struggles throughout the game.

Regardless who is behind center, those issues have to be fixed immediately.

Special teams also had their fair share of struggles, where kicker Cameron Dicker missed a field goal for the second consecutive week, and also bobbled the snap on a punt.

Here are the five biggest takeaways from Texas’ heartbreaking loss to Arkansas:

Offensive line is Texas' biggest weakness

AP Photo/Michael Thomas

The most obvious issue for Texas was the poor offensive line play. Arkansas was able to generate pressure on Hudson Card with a three-man rush. The Longhorns were absolutely dominated in the trenches, and this game likely would have had a much better outcome had the offensive line performed half decent. Denzel Okafor continued to struggle, and it may be time to enter Hayden Conner or Andrej Karic.

There's a legitimate quarterback competition

Mikala Compton/Austin American-Statesman via AP

Hudson Card and Casey Thompson both have their strengths with this offense. With Sarkisian's prototypical style of play, Card is the better fit. However, with how poorly the offensive line has been playing, experience and making decisive plays on the ground benefit Thompson. It's way too similar to the Shane Buechele and Sam Ehlinger competition a few years ago. You'd expect growing pains with a true freshman quarterback, but to what extent? Sarkisian has a tough call to make.

Can't always assume Bijan Robinson is the saving grace

Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Arkansas was able to limit Texas running back Bijan Robinson on the ground. He finished with 19 carries for 69 yards and one touchdown. That was a crucial part of Texas' game plan, and Sarkisian wasn't able to adjust. Outside of Robinson, the other leading rushers were the two quarterbacks. Opposing teams are going to game plan to stop Robinson, and rightfully so, but Sarkisian has to find a way to get the train rolling regardless.

Wide receiver help is needed

Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Will the real No. 1 wide receiver please stand up? In Week 1 against Louisiana, Jordan Whittington was the clear-cut leader to take over the role, but he struggled against Arkansas. On 10 targets, Whittington hauled in five receptions for 32 yards and had a few crucial drops. Joshua Moore, Texas' leading receiving from last season, has been a non-factor in the first two games of the season. True freshman Xavier Worthy is one to watch for, but outside of the offensive line, the wide receiver position is one of Texas' major question marks.

Cameron Dicker is not the weapon we once thought

John Gutierrez-USA TODAY Sports

'Dicker the Kicker' was a popular nickname when he saved the day against Oklahoma a few years ago. However, he hasn't been a consistent kicker overall. It may be due to him taking on more duties as a punter and kicker this season, but his field goal misses in consecutive weeks is cause for concern. He also had a bobbled snap on a punt against Arkansas that they later scored off of. He's now a liability more than a reliability.

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