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Texas Non-Conference Breakdown: Longhorns Won't Be Challenged Outside Big 12

Joshua House@@Sports_House900Contributor IJuly 15, 2009

AUSTIN, TX - NOVEMBER 8: Bevo, the Texas Longhorns' mascot, stands in the corner during a game against the Baylor Bears on November 8, 2008 at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium in Austin, Texas. Texas won 45-21. (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)

The Longhorns' non-conference schedule begins with teams that will not challenge the skill or heart of this Longhorns team.

The 'Horns begin the season by facing the University of Louisiana-Monroe, a Sun Belt foe, at home. The best players on the Warhawks team are two senior safeties who might provide some good competition for some younger Longhorn receivers, but the Horns are expected to roll. 

The Longhorns then travel to Wyoming to play in the mountains. Wyoming is coached by former Missouri offensive coordinator Dave Christensen, who is trying to breathe some life into a dormant Cowboys program.

Christensen's training camp was tougher than usual, and he has already weeded out the weak in his organization, which tells me that, in the long run, he will do just fine.

Senior DT John Fletcher will give Texas freshman center Mason Walters a good taste of what is to come in his college career. Other than that, expect domination by the Horns.

The 'Horns then get the University of Texas-El Paso at home this year. UTEP is expected to win the Conference USA title, and they should be the first team to push back against the Longhorns.

Miners QB Trevor Vittatoe is the most dynamic player on the Miners' team, and depending on how the 'Horns handle Vittatoe, Texas fans can determine whether the secondary, under Will Muschamp, is for real or if the secondary will continue to be a liability for the 'Horns defense.

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The last non-conference opponent on the schedule is the University of Central Florida Golden Knights.

Head coach George O'Leary has done an admirable job with the Knights, coaching them to their best-ever season and to a Conference USA championship.

This year is another rebuilding year for the Golden Knights, and coming off a road game against Oklahoma State, expect Brown to pull most of the starters early in order to keep them fresh for the remainder of the Big 12 schedule.

All in all, it's another cupcake schedule for the Longhorns. A few questions, such as the development of the Longhorns' young RBs, may be answered in the duration of these games, but not much else. We won't know the mettle or the heart of this Longhorn team until conference play starts.

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