Malcolm Brown

Even Charlie Strong gets confused between Malcom Brown and Malcolm Brown

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It can be confusing when two players on a team have the same name. Or at least two names that sound identical. With that in mind, we can give Texas head coach Charlie Strong an excuse after sending a congratulatory tweet to the wrong Texas Longhorn last night.

Texas defensive tackle Malcom Brown rounded out the first round of the NFL Draft Thursday night in Chicago, going to the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots with the 32nd and final pick of the first round. Brown was the first Texas player to be drafted since 2013 after the Longhorns were shut out a year ago, and naturally Strong was happy to see a player from his team go in the first round. Why would he not? This led Strong to take to Twitter to publicly congratulate Brown…

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There was just one small problem with that. This tweet was directed to Texas running back Malcolm Brown. Oops.

Strong soon deleted the inaccurate tweet and passed along his best wishes to the right player, but it is good to know Malcolm Brown was ready for such confusion Thursday night. He just probably didn’t expect his coach to be among the many who got caught up in the confusion. Surely all parties involved are having a good laugh now.

Helmet sticker to Burnt Orange Nation for the screen grab.

Texas Longhorns’ top defender, Malcom Brown, opts for NFL

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The NFL and its teams, coaches and scouts will now have to worry about confusing Malcom Brown with Malcolm Brown.

After three years together in Austin as members of the Texas Longhorns, the defensive tackle and running back will be in the same draft class.

For Malcolm Brown (the running back), the senior would naturally be a part of the 2015 NFL draft class. However, the inclusion of Malcom Brown (the defensive tackle) wasn’t guaranteed.

After a sensational junior campaign, Malcom Brown decided to forgo his senior season in Austin to join the professional ranks.

“Coach (Chris) Rumph talked to me right after the (Texas Bowl), and I talked to my wife about it,” Brown said in an official release from the school. “Then I went and saw Coach (Charlie) Strong yesterday, and we had a good talk about it. I decided to enter the 2015 Draft, and that’s what everyone thinks is best.

The defensive lineman was named a Walter Camp All American after the 2014 season. Six different media outlets also awarded Malcom Brown with All American honors. He was even a finalist for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy (top defensive player) and the Outland Trophy (top interior lineman).

“Malcom had an unbelievable season and was a lot of fun to coach,” Texas head coach Charlie Strong said. “He’s a tremendous football player and a great young man who has a really bright future ahead of him. I know the decision was a difficult one, but we had some really good talks. He has our support and we wish him the best as he prepares for the NFL.”

Malcom Brown led the Longhorns in 2014 with 15 tackles for loss, six sacks and eight quarterback hits. Over the past two seasons, the defensive lineman started 25 straight games and played in all 36 games of his collegiate career.

The defensive lineman is generally viewed as a first-round talent and one of the top defensive tackles in the upcoming class.

Outland Trophy goes on the offensive with semifinalists

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The Lombardi Award finalists had a decidedly defensive lean. When it comes to another predominately lineman award, though, it’s almost all about the other side of the ball.

The Outland Trophy, handed out annually since 1946, announced its semifinalists for the 2014 award Thursday, revealing a pool of six potential winners. As you may have guessed from the headline, five of the six semifinalists are offensive linemen.

The lone defensive player is Texas tackle Malcolm Brown, who is also one of the finalists for the Bronko Nagurski Award. What follows are the other five Outland semifinalists.

  • Auburn center Reese Dismukes
  • Baylor offensive tackle Spencer Drango
  • Oregon tackle Jake Fisher
  • Florida State guard Tre’ Jackson
  • Iowa offensive tackle Brandon Scherff

Finalists for this year’s award will be announced next Tuesday.  Last year’s winner was Pittsburgh defensive tackle Aaron Donald.

Five finalists for Nagurski Award announced

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Forget semifinalist appetizers; the award that honors a Minnesota college football legend has gone straight for the main course.

The Bronko Nagurski Award announced Thursday the five finalists for the 2014 version of the award.  Two of the finalists hail from the SEC, while there is one each the ACC, Big 12 and Pac-12.

Three of the five, interestingly, are defensive backs.

The finalists for the award, given annually to the nation’s best player on the defensive side of the ball, appear below.

  • Texas defensive tackle Malcolm Brown
  • Alabama defensive back Landon Collins
  • Ole Miss defensive back Senquez Golson
  • Louisville defensive back Gerod Holliman
  • Arizona linebacker Scooby Wright

The 2013 winner of the Nagurski Award was Pittsburgh defensive lineman Aaron Donald.

Texas starts fast, hangs on for upset of No. 23 West Virginia

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If you can call beating a team on the trail end of the Top 25 a signature win, then Charlie Strong wrote his name across the bottom of Texas’ 33-16 win over No. 23 West Virginia on Saturday afternoon.

The Longhorns built a 24-3 halftime lead after Johnathan Gray and Malcolm Brown led the way for 178 rushing yards, but Texas practically demanded the Mountaineers crawl back in the game after sticking its offense in neutral for most of the second half. Texas’ first seven drives of the second half went punt, punt, fumble, punt, turnover on downs, interception or punt, losing yards on two of those possessions and traveling 11 yards or less on five of them. And, voila, all of a sudden West Virginia took possession of the ball at its own 14 with more than five minutes remaining in the game.

But, as it had so many times throughout the day, the Texas defense stood tall when its offense needed it to, forcing a turnover on downs at the WVU 15 yard line. Gray rushed in from 15 yards out for his third touchdown of the day, putting the game away and providing the winning score with 3:06 to go.

Texas rushed the ball 39 times for 228 yards and Gray’s three scores, carrying the day for a spectacularly mediocre Tyrone Swoopes, who completed 11 of his 29 passes for 124 yards with a touchdown and an interception.

Cedric Reed led the defensive effort for the Longhorns, recording three sacks, including one for a safety, and a forced fumble. Vance Bedford‘s unit allowed Clint Trickett to complete 35-of-48 passes, but for just 248 yards with no touchdowns and an interception. Kevin White caught 15 passes for 132 yards, but no other Mountaineer gained more than 50 yards through the air. Dreamius Smith led the way for West Virginia on the ground with 10 carries for an even 100 yards and a touchdown.

The win pushes Texas to 5-5 on the season and on the precipice of bowl eligibility with an extremely winnable visit to Oklahoma State next week. After that, Strong’s bunch closes the season with a chance for a statement win over TCU in Austin on Thanksgiving night.

West Virginia, meanwhile, falls from controlling its own destiny in the Big 12 just eight days ago to standing below Texas in the standings at 4-3 in league play. The 6-4 Mountaineers will take Saturday off before hosting Kansas State on Thursday, Nov. 20.