After surviving West Virginia, Texas turns attention to Oklahoma State

Posted Monday, Nov. 11, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
More information No. 12 Oklahoma State at No. 24 Texas 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium, Austin Records: Oklahoma State 8-1, 5-1 Big 12; Texas 7-2, 6-0 TV: KDFW/4

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Riding a five-game winning streak, Texas already had a ton of confidence going into last week. Now with the first overtime victory in program history under their belt, the Longhorns might have the momentum necessary to get through a regular season-closing three-game gauntlet unscathed.

No. 24 Texas (7-2, 6-0 Big 12) hosts No. 12 Oklahoma State (8-1, 5-1) at 2:30 p.m. Saturday having won six straight games, none more thrilling than the last.

They hadn’t trailed in more than a month but, going into halftime against West Virginia, the Longhorns found themselves behind 19-13.

Texas had a punt blocked out of the end zone for a safety, gave up a pair of touchdown runs — after allowing two in the previous three games — and surrendered a field goal as time expired in the first half.

“If you’re a championship team, you’ll win this game,” coach Mack Brown told his team at halftime. “You have to. That’s who you are because you don’t have wiggle room. You don’t have room to have a setback. It’s on you. The coaches are going to try to help you better in the second half but it’s on you.”

Sure enough, the Longhorns clawed their way back into the game, erasing a 10-point second-half deficit and sending the game into overtime with a 24-yard field goal from Anthony Fera with 13 seconds left in the fourth quarter.

Facing a third-and-goal from the 2-yard line in overtime, co-offensive coordinator Major Applewhite called a play similar to one he called on a fourth-down play in the second quarter against Oklahoma. On that one, Case McCoy rolled out and overthrew fullback Alex De La Torre.

“I needed to pay him back,” McCoy said. “I took some glory away from him on that one. I knew I had to get him the ball.”

With the game on the line in Morgantown, McCoy hit De La Torre, a converted linebacker, between the numbers for what proved to be a game-winning touchdown.

“Perfect timing,” De La Torre said. “I wish the throw against OU would have hit me but they told me my time was coming. And what better time than overtime?”

After facing the Cowboys, who are three-point favorites, Texas hosts Texas Tech on Thanksgiving before a battle in Waco against Baylor that could serve as a de facto Big 12 title game if both teams remain undefeated in the conference.

But the Longhorns haven’t put themselves in a position to win their first conference championship since 2009 by looking ahead. That nearly cost them a win over Iowa State while they were thinking about playing Oklahoma the following Saturday.

“We’ve got to play one week at a time,” junior cornerback Quandre Diggs said. “I don’t really want to hear about the things we have following Oklahoma State because I really don’t care very honestly. I want to win this week and that’s all I care about. I don’t care about Big 12 championships in the future because that’s the kind of thing that gets you beat. I’m worried about winning this week.”

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