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Texas defense has monster day in upset of West Virginia


Texas defensive end Cedric Reed earned two votes from NFL executives in this week's Ask 5 on the most disappointing prospect in college football.

His response?

Just put on the tape of Texas' 33-16 upset of West Virginia.

The senior had his best game of the season against the Mountaineers and looked much more like the prospect many thought could be a first-round pick in the 2015 NFL Draft. Reed finished the game with three sacks and forced a fumble as a nearly unblockable force off the edge for the Longhorns.

Reed wasn't the only defensive star to have a good game for Texas. Linebacker Jordan Hicks was a tackling machine as he went over the century mark for the season in total tackles.

Most impressive was the game cornerback Quandre Diggs turned in. He kept West Virginia star Kevin White in check for the most part (no touchdowns, 132 yards) while also picking off a pass.

On the other side of the ball, the Longhorns rode Johnathan Gray to the victory as the offense finally found some success with several long drives. Gray, a former five-star back whose career hasn't lived up to expectations, finished with 101 yards and three touchdowns -- the final one ended up icing the game late in the fourth quarter.

West Virginia quarterback Clint Trickett had a rough afternoon in Austin, throwing 49 passes for just 248 yards without any touchdowns. The team did manage to rush for 200 yards behind Dreamius Smith (10 carries, 100 yards, one touchdown), but it was mostly a frustrating day for head coach Dana Holgorsen.

The win was a big boost to Texas' bowl game hopes under first year coach Charlie Strong. Sitting at 5-5 going into their final two games, the Longhorns have a good chance to pick up the necessary sixth win against a struggling Oklahoma State team next week.

You can follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter at @BryanDFischer.

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