Austin High

Senior midfielder Tully Moorhead led Texas with 55 goals last season and was named the 2014 WCLA Preseason Player of the Year. The Longhorns are currently 9-8 on the season.

Photo Credit: Sam Ortega | Daily Texan Staff

Longhorn senior midfielder Tully Moorhead, Lacrosse Magazine’s 2014 WCLA Division I Preseason Player of the Year, has her eyes on the future in her last season as a club lacrosse player at Texas.

“Tully is an all-around great player,” head coach Brandie Leach said. “She is dangerous at both ends of the field.”

Last season, Moorhead led the team with 55 goals and has already surpassed that total this season with two games left until nationals. Leach suggests that those statistics are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Moorhead’s talent and sportsmanship. 

“Her internal motivation is very important to the success of our team because she is a captain, leader, and her teammates look up to her,” Leach said. “Every practice and game, she exemplifies this trait.”

The team is 9-8 this season, including a blowout 17-0 win against Texas A&M and narrow losses to higher ranked teams. Now in her 11th and final season as a lacrosse player, Moorhead still has the same passion for the game that she had when she first picked up a stick.

The Grapevine native immerses herself in the game she loves. After graduation, Moorhead said she would love the opportunity to coach, but is currently planning on going into research to become a commercial developer or international businesswoman in Austin or Miami.

“I coached Westlake and Austin High my freshman through junior years. It depends where I end up — looking like Austin or Miami. Both cities have really amazing athletes, just not the most developed lacrosse network,” Moorhead said.

With graduation just around the corner, Moorhead is looking for post-collegiate leagues to play in, but the search may prove to be difficult.

“To my knowledge there is only one post-collegiate women’s professional team, and only one club player is on the roster — Clayton Crum, a former Texas player who also won Preseason Player of the Year and Player of the Year.”

After graduation, Moorhead will have a family connection to the University: Her sister will also be playing for the Longhorns.

Moorhead has a bright future ahead of her, but her love for the lacrosse team here at Texas will never waver.

“My favorite memory was the last weekend in February this year,” Moorhead said. “We had played so well all weekend and we were playing Florida — ranked in the top 2 or 3 right now — and I look over on the sideline and see my roommates, family, my friends, my partner and his family. So my favorite memory: playing really well in front of everyone I love.”

Austin-based funk-rock ensemble Soul Track Mind will be performing at the Continental Club before heading out on the road for a national tour. (Photo courtesy of Soul Track Mind).

Local group Soul Track Mind have no qualms about bringing the funk. From their melodic, powerful horn section to frontman Donovan Keith’s pleasing falsetto reminiscent of soul crooner Al Green’s, Soul Track Mind is all about one thing: being the life of the party. The seven-piece funk-rock ensemble will be performing tonight at the Continental Club.

The brainchild of Keith, Soul Track Mind came together when the vocalist moved to Austin in January of 2008.

“I wanted to put together a band with a classic soul sound,” Keith said. “I already had a few original songs written to start with that were rooted in soul music from the ’60s. Eventually, we blended our different influences together and created a more modern edge to our sound.”

Shortly after meeting guitarist Jonathon Zemek, Keith took to Craigslist to assemble Soul Track Mind’s current lineup: Michael Mancuso (bass), Sammy P (keys), Zach Buie (trumpet), Douglas Leveton (drums) and Benjamin George (saxophone).

With the band intact, Soul Track Mind released their first full-length debut, Ghost of Soul, back in August of 2010. The album received praise from Austin 360 and Texas Music Magazine for its nostalgic ’60s and ’70s R&B sound. For example, “I Get My Groove From You,” evokes Motown pop sound with its luscious melodies, while “Little Red Heart” is reminiscent of lonely soulman Smokey Robinson.

The group truly struts their stuff live — Keith becomes a dancing machine, moving his hips and snapping his fingers to Leveton’s rocking drums. George and Buie toot their horns with punchy bravado, bobbing their heads with such devotion you can’t help but do the same. It’s easy to get overcome by their upbeat, dance-friendly energy, clapping, hollering and knee-slapping until the very end of their set.

“We continue to get better and better at capturing our ‘live’ sound,” said Leveton. During this year’s South By Southwest, the group had a memorable performance at the “Austin High” film screening party.

“This was our first show where we had a video projector, smoke, lights and lasers,” Leveton said. “We did 100 minutes straight, before encoring with ‘Shout,’ and everybody went wild.”

The group’s SXSW festivities were kept at a minimum, however — the band was busy recording new material at the Converse Rubber Tracks pop-up recording studio. Based out of Brooklyn, the recording studio offered Soul Track Mind and four other Texas-based bands the opportunity to record material, free of charge, allowing the artists retaining all rights to their work.

“We decided to bring a Converse Rubber Tracks pop-up recording studio here to Austin because there’s no place that celebrates music and the diversity of music like Austin,” said Converse chief marketing officer Geoff Cottrill. “We just wanted to give something back to Texas and help out those bands that do not have the access to get into a good recording studio.”

The recording session was an enjoyable experience for Soul Track Mind. Using the studio’s equipment, the group was able to record new songs, tracking everything live to capture a more organic sound.

“It’s not often that a company comes along and provides an all-expenses paid, no-strings attached studio session,” Leveton said. “All in all, it was a great opportunity for us.”

Having taken some time to record new material, Soul Track Mind is preparing to tour around the country. The band will be performing their first major festival debut at this year’s Wakarusa Music Festival, at Ozark, Arkansas’ Mulberry Mountain. They’ll be playing alongside such popular artists as Girl Talk and Matisyahu.

Now the group is competing to play an even larger stage at the music festival: Through the use of a Facebook voting system, the band hopes to get bumped up to a bigger stage.

However, they are still excited to see other bands performing. “I know I’d personally like to see Fitz and the Tantrums, G. Love & Special Sauce, and our fellow Austinite, Gary Clark Jr.,” Keith said.

Soul Track Mind is taking their funk-filled journey one day at a time. The band will record new songs in some of the towns they stop in, and will be giving energized, enthralling performance.

“We look forward to seeing our old fans again as we travel, as well as saving many new souls,” Keith said.

Originally posted on Jan. 2, 2012

The Longhorns welcomed six new coaches in 2011 and they helped bring a three-win improvement to the program: from 5-7 to 8-5. Texas played some of its best ball in California--a 49-20 win over UCLA on Sept. 17 and a 21-10 win in the Holiday Bowl against Cal on Wednesday--and with that in mind, our season review of the Longhorns' coaching additions comes with the flavor of a Hollywood movie review. All reviews are out of five stars.

Manny Diaz--defensive coordinator: 4 1/2 stars
Previous school: Mississippi State

Diaz was a blockbuster hit for Texas in his first season in Austin. He was the architect of the Big 12 Conference's No. 1 defense, getting the most out of a unit that failed to live up to expectations under Will Muschamp. Diaz integrated his new schemes quickly and garnered a lot of praise from head coach Mack Brown for his strong communication skills with the players. The Longhorns raved about Diaz and relished playing in his defense. Texas forced a season-high five turnovers in the Holiday Bowl to end the season in impressive fashion, and the defense will only improve as the Longhorns become more comfortable with Diaz's philosophies. He inherited a defense with an unproven secondary and a thin defensive line, but that didn't stop UT from ranking No. 11 nationally in total defense (315.33 yards per game) and No. 8 against the run (103.67 ypg). Still, the only thing holding Diaz back from a 5-star rating was his squad's penchant for giving up the big play (long scoring plays doomed the Longhorns in each of their five losses).

Bryan Harsin--offensive coordinator: 3 stars
Previous school: Boise State

Harsin resembled a big-budget, 3-D film: flashy, fun, but lacking in substance. The more you examined him, the more flaws you found. For every brilliant gadget play that resulted in a touchdown, there was a head-scratching call and a trend of going away from the running game too early. Granted, it's not easy for a team to fully grasp a new offensive scheme and playbook, and Harsin wasn't blessed with Vince Young or Colt McCoy under center. He made the most of what he inherited from Greg Davis for the most part, and UT put up a modest 404 yards per game. Still, Harsin abandoned the Longhorns No. 19 rushing attack (210.42 ypg) far too often. Injuries to Malcolm Brown, Joe Bergeron, Fozzy Whittaker and Jaxon Shipley limited his play calls, but when his playmakers were in the game they were often overlooked. The quarterback situation was a mess and Harsin never settled on David Ash or Case McCoy as the starter, though neither player ever separated himself and entered the season with one career pass attempt between them. But Harsin's trick plays were a joy to watch and his creativity was a welcome sight. He wasn't a box-office flop, but the sequel should yield better results as the Longhorns grow in his system.

Stacy Searels--offensive line: 3 1/2 stars
Previous school: Georgia

Searels was like a new director overseeing a successful movie franchise: putting his own twist on a formula that worked for years. Searels, though, toughened Texas in the trenches and brought a mean streak to the men up front. After years of zone blocking, the Longhorns reverted to a downhill blocking scheme similar to the unit's Searels coached with and against in the Southeaster Conference. He developed redshirt freshman Dominic Espinosa into a reliable starter and found a star in the making in rookie tackle Josh Cochran. Searles inherited a relatively soft line and morphed them into a mean bunch, though they didn't bring that mentality to all 13 games. It will take more than just one season to change the culture up front, but Searels has Texas headed in the right direction.

Darrell Wyatt--wide receivers: 3 stars
Previous school: Kansas

Wyatt compared to a low-budget, independent film in his first season with UT: trying to get the most out of an inexperienced group while trying to keep up with the high-powered passing attacks of the Big 12. Wyatt inherited a young receiving corps and didn't get a chance to work with junior Marquise Goodwin until after the season-opener. Shipley missed time with a knee injury and sophomore Mike Davis also vanished at times, though it wasn't because of injuries. The constant shuffling made it tougher on Wyatt and Texas never established a reliable passing game--you can blame poor QB play for that as well. While the receivers didn't have the best hands, they were an excellent blocking group and assisted the running game more than in previous years. Still, Wyatt couldn't get promising sophomore Darius White to the next level, and he left the program before the bowl game. If Wyatt can continue to get his players to block downfield, the passing game will come around with Austin High product Cayleb Jones coming next season.

Bo Davis--defensive tackles: 3 1/2 stars
Previous school: Auburn

Davis was a solid addition to the Texas staff in 2011, similar to a good movie that would be a good rental if you didn't catch it in theaters. Davis won't win any awards for his work, but the defensive line improved under him. He found reliable backups to Kheeston Randall in Calvin Howell and Ashton Dorsey: a pair that will only improve over the next few seasons. Davis' tackles were solid in the middle and controlled the line of scrimmage. He also did wonders with Chris Whaley, who moved to tackle after beginning his career as a running back. Davis' group was above average, though they were gashed for a few big runs. He has room to improve, but Davis proved to be a smart hire.

Bennie Wylie--strength and conditioning: 4 stars
Previous School: Tennessee

Wylie's first year on the 40 Acres was like a critically acclaimed foreign film: hard to judge by most, but impressive nonetheless. Wylie got the Longhorns back into shape after they slacked off in the 2010 offseason following a National Championship loss. Texas was stronger, faster and better conditioned this year, and Wylie was a player favorite. Fozzy Whittaker was in the best shape of his career before a knee injury ended his senior season, and Wylie played a big role in Whittaker's impressive season. He didn’t directly contribute to any wins, but Texas was a good fourth quarter team thanks to Wylie's offseason conditioning and weight training programs.

2011 Austin Film Festival

"Austin High"
Alan Deutsch

Genre: Comedy
Grade: B

Former UT students Kirk Johnson and Will Elliott wrote the screenplay for “Austin High,” and their love of Austin is clear in each and every scene of the film. The city is practically a living, breathing character, with its various hot spots showcased throughout the film and its characters motivated by a desire to keep the city as traditionally non-traditional as possible.

While the filmmakers’ love for Austin gives “Austin High” an easy charm and likability, the film’s story suffers from the same shagginess “Austin High” worships in its setting. Set in a high school staffed by pot-smoking teachers, janitors, students and even principal Samuel Wilson (Michael S. Wilson), things seem pretty ideal until the arrival of Vice President Lambert (Melinda Y. Cohen), a domineering tyrant.

Most of the film’s problems lie in Lambert’s character, who is barely more than a humanized S&M fetish and whose insubordinate behavior certainly wouldn’t fly, even in a school as laid-back as the one portrayed in the film. The fact that Lambert orders her boss around and even conducts unauthorized drug searches against his will reeks of contrivance for the sake of convenience, and hurts the film’s early moments simply because of how little sense it makes. However, things get more and more compelling as “Austin High” proceeds, and by the end, it becomes a pretty touching comedy.

“Austin High” is a film custom-made for the Austin Film Festival, a shaggy-dog stoner comedy with strong performances and plenty of unabashedly hilarious jokes. While it may suffer from a few weak story beats, it’s the kind of charming, heartfelt film that is absolutely delightful to stumble upon at festivals like this one.