DALLAS (AP) — Case McCoy and these Texas seniors gave Mack Brown a much needed and long-awaited win over Oklahoma.
McCoy threw two touchdowns, defensive tackle Chris Whaley returned an interception 31 yards for a score and Texas beat the 12th-ranked Sooners 36-20 Saturday, ending Oklahoma’s three-game winning streak in the Red River Rivalry and giving Brown at least a temporary reprieve from all the gloomy talk about his future with the Longhorns.
It was Brown’s 154th victory in his 16 seasons at Texas, second most in school history behind Darrell Royal. That also matches coach Bob Stoops’ win total in 15 seasons with the Sooners. The head-to-head record for the only active Big 12 coaches who have won national championships is now Stoops 9, Brown 6.
Texas (4-2, 3-0 Big 12), a two-touchdown underdog, never trailed after the impressive rumble late in the first quarter by Whaley, a converted running back.
Oklahoma (5-1, 2-1) had won the last two games in the series by a combined score of 118-38, but came out with its 10-game Big 12 winning streak snapped.
Daje Johnson had an 85-yard punt return in the third quarter for the Longhorns, who had two 100-yard rushers. Johnathan Gray ran 29 times for 123 yards while Malcolm Brown ran 23 times for 120 yards.
With David Ash still out because of lingering concussion symptoms, McCoy got his second Red River Rivalry start. And McCoy didn’t get shut out in the series. Older brother Colt led the Longhorns to three wins over Oklahoma and a BCS national championship appearance four seasons ago.
McCoy completed 13 of 21 passes for 190 yards with an interception, which defensive lineman Geneo Grissom returned 54 yards for a score in the fourth quarter for OU.
McCoy threw a 59-yard TD to Marcus Johnson in the second quarter and a 38-yarder in the third quarter to Mike Davis, the receiver reprimanded by the Big 12 but not suspended for his cheap shot against an Iowa State defender in Texas’ previous game.
Since that championship game loss to Alabama after the 2009 season, Brown is 26-18, and now with his first victory over Oklahoma in that span.
A 1-2 start to this season with 19 returning starters had put Brown in a precarious spot, changing his defensive coordinator in season and having to answer questions about how much longer he would be Texas’ coach.
Things felt much better this second Saturday in October for the Longhorns, evident by the early-exiting crowd from the crimson side of the stadium that missed Grissom reaching up in front of McCoy for the pick.
Texas led in the series for the first time since 2009 on Antony Fera’s 31-yard field goal to end the opening drive, on which the Longhorns converted three third downs.
The Sooners got even on Michael Hunnicutt’s 34-yard field goal on their first possession. They could have been ahead if Brennan Clay hadn’t let a pass go through his hands in the end zone, a play that had Blake Bell putting both heads on his helmet.
Bell ran for four TDs in the Sooners’ 63-21 victory last year. This time, as the Oklahoma starter instead of the short-yardage run specialist, he was sacked four times and had minus-27 yards on seven carries. Bell completed 12 of 26 passes for 133 yards with two interceptions.
After Fera’s 50-yard field goal with 3:22 left in the first half, Roy Finch returned the ensuing kickoff 73 yards. The Sooners then ran five straight times, the last Damien Williams for a 3-yard TD.
Texas went 41 yards in the final minute for Fera’s 43-yard field goal on the final play and a 23-10 halftime lead.
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