Mack Brown Breaks Oklahoma Curse
Longhorns roll in Red River Rivalry.
Oct. 8, 2005
By Jeff Sullivan
Special to CSTV.com from The Sports Xchange
DALLAS -- The talk this week in Texas and Oklahoma was that despite the No. 2 Longhorns' status as two-touchdown favorites, the 100th game of the Red River Rivalry was going to be worthy of its centennial title.
Some believed that despite having already lost to TCU and UCLA this autumn, Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops would somehow cajole his Sooners to a sixth straight victory in one of the nation's most-intense rivalries.
Instead, in front of 75,452 fans at the Cotton Bowl, Texas ended a half-decade of frustration by dominating Oklahoma, 45-12.
The Longhorns have never defeated Oklahoma by more than 33 points. In 1941, Texas also enjoyed a 33-point verdict, 40-7. The 45 points tallied by Texas also represented an all-time high against its border-state counterpart.
Entering Saturday, since 2000, Texas had won 53 of 57 regular-season games against teams not residing in Norman, Okla. And despite being the defending Rose Bowl champions and defeating Ohio State on the road earlier this season, the pressure of Saturday's game rested mightily on Texas mentor Mack Brown. The Dallas Morning News ran a special section Saturday with a front-page headline of "Mack on the Spot."
The Longhorns dominated every aspect of the game, though, and it was quickly apparent that Brown's five-year losing streak at OU's hands would end.
TOP PLAYER: Who else? As he has in previous national spotlight games -- last season's Rose Bowl and at Ohio State in September -- Texas junior quarterback Vince Young performed as advertised and then some.
His final numbers included 241 passing yards, three touchdowns tosses, zero interceptions and 45 rushing yards. And while those numbers are quite impressive, there was no padding of the stat sheet simply to boost Young's Heisman Trophy candidacy.
After telling anyone who would listen all week that Texas wasn't going to play nervous with demons of the five-game losing streak in their collective heads, Young drove the Longhorns 82 yards for a score on the game's opening drive. He completed each of his five attempts on the drive for 60 yards, including a 15-yard touchdown hookup with sophomore Ramonce Taylor, and also ran for a pair of first downs.
Young sent Oklahoma into the intermission reeling after a 64-yard scoring connection with sophomore Billy Pittman with just 17 seconds remaining in the second quarter.
With the three touchdown passes, Young's career numbers include 28 passing touchdowns and 27 rushing scores.
KEY QUOTE: "We've had a tough time in this series. I'm not proud of that and I feel responsible for that. To see the kids out on the field with the fans, the interaction after the game, is something you feel really good about." -- Texas coach Mack Brown.
NOTES: After rushing for 225 yards against Texas as a freshman last October, Oklahoma tailback Adrian Peterson carried the pigskin just three times for 10 yards Saturday. A right ankle sprain suffered last Saturday against Kansas State kept Peterson out of practice most of the week. After carrying for no gain at the 13-minute mark of the second quarter Saturday, he didn't return . . . The last time the Longhorns came out of the Red River Rivalry undefeated was 1983. Texas finished that season 11-1, losing to Georgia, 10-9, in the Cotton Bowl . . . Texas owns a 64-0 record under Brown when outrushing its opponents . . . The Longhorns haven't lost since Oklahoma defeated them, 12-0, last October, a span of 12 games . . . Oklahoma junior Paul Thompson, who was the starting quarterback in the season opener vs. TCU, started Saturday at wide receiver. He finished with one reception for six yards . . . Before being intercepted by Clayton Tefteller with two minutes remaining in the third quarter, Sooners redshirt freshman Rhett Bomar had gone 75 attempts over 11 quarters without throwing a pick. Bomar completed 12-of-33 passes for 94 yards and a touchdown . . . With his Kansas City Chiefs on their bye week, linebacker Derrick Johnson was on the Texas sidelines. He was an All-American for the Longhorns last season . . . Despite just eight carries, Texas freshman Jamaal Charles rushed for 114 yards, including an electrifying 80-yard scamper with a minute remaining in the first quarter. It marked the fourth time in five games Charles has rushed for at least 97 yards . . . Charles left the game with a hand injury, but it wasn't considered serious . . . The 52-yard field goal by Oklahoma sophomore Garrett Hartley in the first quarter tied Scott Blanton (1992) for the longest by a Sooner in the 100 games against Texas . . . The Longhorns lead the overall series 56-39-5. They also hold the edge in games played in Dallas, 44-35-4 . . . Texas had 274 more yards total offense than the Sooners (446-172).