Game Primer: OU vs. Texas

Saturday, October 6th 2018, 10:34 am
By: News 9


• In a matchup of the Big 12's two most successful programs, No. 7/5 Oklahoma meets No 19/20 Texas for the 113th time on Saturday at 11 a.m. CT. The AT&T Red River Showdown, to be played in Dallas for the 90th straight year, will be televised by FOX with Gus Johnson, Joel Klatt and Jenny Taft announcing.

• Oklahoma has won 11 Big 12 titles in the first 22 years of the league, with no other program during that span winning more than three. All 11 of OU's Big 12 titles have come in the last 19 years, with no other program winning more than two during the span. Texas ranks second with three Big 12 titles (last one in 2009; OU has won five since then).

• Oklahoma has won 27 of its last 28 games against Big 12 opponents (including its last 10) dating back to the 2015 season. Its only loss during that span came at the hands of Iowa State on Oct. 7 last year (the Cyclones beat the No. 3 Sooners 38-31 in Norman). Sixteen of those 27 victories have been by at least 15 points, and eight by at least 30 points.

• The Sooners have been ranked in the AP's top 10 in 27 of the last 28 polls. The only time it wasn't during that stretch was following last year's loss to Iowa State (fell from third to 12th).

• Texas is the only Big 12 program with a winning record against the Sooners. Oklahoma trails 61-46-5 in the series, but owns a 25-19-3 (.564) advantage since 1971. In the Big 12 era, OU is 13-9 (.591) against the Longhorns. The Sooners have won six of the last eight meetings and 12 of the last 18.

• OU has scored at least 30 points in 27 of its last 29 games (29 and 28 in the other two). It has won 27 of those 29 contests. OU's 27-2 record since Oct. 1, 2016, is the nation's second best (Alabama is 28-2).

• The Sooners are coming off a 66-33 win over Baylor in which they set school records for yards per pass attempt (18.8), yards per completion (25.2) and pass efficiency rating (317.8). Their 11.2 yards per play tied as the third-best figure in program annals. Quarterback Kyler Murray tied an OU record by accounting for seven touchdowns, six of them through the air. He was 17 for 21 for 432 yards and no interceptions, and ran for 45 yards and a score. The team's 11.2 yards per play marked the third-highest total in program history.

• Texas posted its fourth straight victory by beating Kansas State 19-14 on the road Saturday. Quarterback Sam Ehlinger threw for 207 yards and a touchdown on 29-of-36 passing, and D'Shawn Jamison returned a punt 90 yards for the game's first points. The Longhorns held K-State to 217 yards (3.4 per play).


• This marks the first season since 2012 that both OU and Texas enter the Red River Showdown ranked in the AP Top 25. The Sooners have been ranked in the AP poll at the time of the Red River game in each of the last 13 years and in 18 of the last 19 seasons. Texas was unranked when playing the Sooners each of the last five years.

• Saturday's game will pit the Big 12's top scoring offense in Oklahoma (48.6 ppg) versus the league's second-best scoring defense in Texas (19.8 ppg). Last year OU set a school record with its 8.3 yards per play (believed to be the second-highest average in FBS history), and this year the Sooners are averaging a nation-leading 8.9 yards per snap (the FBS single-season record is 8.6 by Hawaii in 2006). Texas is allowing 4.8 yards per play.

• Dating back to the start of the 2012 season, the Sooners are 33-6 (.846) in regular season games away from home. In those 39 contests, Oklahoma has outscored its opponents 1,566-1,064 (40-27 average). OU has scored at least 30 points in 32 of those 39 games. 

• Oklahoma has outscored its four opponents 243-116 this year. In the first half, the margin is 146-40. The last time OU allowed 40 or fewer combined first-half points through the first five games of a season was in 2013 (gave up 21). The defense has permitted scores on only seven of 32 first-half opponent possessions this year (22 percent).

• Through five games this season, quarterback Kyler Murray has a better passing efficiency rating (231.0), more total touchdowns (21), more yards per pass attempt (13.4), more yards per completion (19.0) and more rushing yards per game (57.0) than Baker Mayfield, Sam Bradford and Jason White did through five games the years they won their Heisman Trophies while at OU (see chart on the bottom of page 3 of these notes).


• Texas enters today's game 4-1 overall and 2-0 in the Big 12. Since a season-opening 34-29 loss at Maryland, the Longhorns have won four in a row, including home victories over No. 22 USC and No. 17 TCU. Texas has won four straight games for the first time since 2013. 

• In a 19-14 win at Kansas State on Saturday, Texas limited the Wildcats to 217 total yards (110 passing, 107 rushing) and 6 of 15 conversions on third down. The Longhorns gained 339 total yards (228 passing, 111 rushing) and converted 8 of 14 third downs. Quarterback Sam Ehlinger was 29 of 36 for 207 yards and a touchdown. D'Shawn Jamison provided the first score with a 90-yard punt return.

• For the season, Texas is outscoring opponents 28.8 to 19.8 and outgaining them 396.6 to 333.2 yards per game. The Longhorns average 243.4 passing yards and 153.2 rushing yards per contest and convert on 41 percent of third downs while allowing opponents to convert just 35 percent on third down. The Texas defense has collected six interceptions and forced eight fumbles (recovered one),and holds a 7-5 season advantage in turnovers. The defense has seven sacks and averages 6.0 tackles for loss per game. Defensive back Caden Sterns leads the team with three interceptions.

• Ehlinger has completed 65 percent of his passes for 1,185 yards (237.0 per game) and nine TDs against two interceptions. He has also netted 153 yards and three TDs on 55 rushes. Top receiving targets Lil'Jordan Humphrey (26 catches, 403 yards, three TDs) and Collin Johnson (24 catches, 350 yards, 3 TDs) average 80.4 and 70.0 yards per game, respectively. Running back Tre Watson averages 56.0 rushing yards per game while Keaontay Ingram averages 51.8 yards.

• Head coach Tom Herman is in his second season at Texas. He owns a 33-11 career record and is 11-7 at UT. He went 22-4 in two years at Houston.


• Oklahoma jumped to a 20-0 second-quarter lead, fell behind 24-23 with 8:01 remaining in the fourth and then scored on a 59-yard pass 1:08 later for the final points of a 29-24 win over Texas on Oct. 14, 2017.

• OU outgained the Longhorns by 90 yards (518-428) despite running 15 fewer plays, and averaged 7.7 yards per play to Texas' 5.2. The Sooners limited UT to a 48.9 pass completion percentage (21 for 43).

• Lincoln Riley became just the fifth OU head coach to win in his debut against Texas, joining Bennie Owen in 1905, Jim Mackenzie in 1966, Barry Switzer in 1973 and John Blake in 1996.

• Baker Mayfield, who set a school record by reaching 200 consecutive pass attempts without an interception (his streak ended with a second-quarter pickoff), was 17 for 27 for 302 yards and two touchdowns in improving to 2-1 against the Longhorns as OU's starting quarterback.

• The recipient of Mayfield's final TD pass, Mark Andrews finished with four grabs for 104 yards. Marquise Brown added four catches for 73 yards and CeeDee Lamb hauled in three receptions for 74 yards after missing the final three quarters of the previous week's game due to injury.

• In their Red River rivalry debuts, Trey Sermon rushed 20 times for 96 yards and Rodney Anderson carried 10 times for 48 yards, including a 15-yard TD rush in the second quarter that put OU ahead 17-0.

• Emmanuel Beal and Kenneth Murray led OU with seven tackles each, while Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, D.J. Ward and Amani Bledsoe each registered a sack. Ward finished with 2.0 tackles for loss while Okoronkwo also forced a fumble, broke up a pass and registered five quarterback hurries to earn Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week honors.

• Punter/placekicker Austin Seibert had a banner day, going 3-for-3 on field goals (25, 28, 36 yards) and 3-for-3 on extra points, averaging 47.0 yards on his five punts (three over 50 yards, two downed inside the 20-yard line [one at the 1-yard line]) and registering seven touchbacks on his eight kickoffs (made a tackle on the non-touchback).