The State Fair of Texas takes place in Dallas, Texas every year during late September and mid-October. Sitting next to the fair, is the Cotton Bowl Stadium. The stadium was built in 1930 and has played host to the Red River Rivalry since 1932. Every year the Texas Longhorns and the Oklahoma Sooners meet in Dallas to renew their rivalry. The Golden Hat goes to the winner of this game. After last year’s triumphant win by Texas, Oklahoma hopes to regain the Golden Hat once again. As we enter 2019, Texas leads the overall series 62-47-5.
Texas comes into the matchup ranked #11 with a 4-1 record. Tom Herman is in his 3rd season as head coach. The Longhorns have registered wins over Louisiana Tech, Rice, Oklahoma State, and West Virginia. Texas’ only loss came in week two at home to LSU. Junior quarterback Sam Ehlinger has thrown for 1,448 yards and 17 touchdowns. Ehlinger accounted for 5 touchdowns in this game last year. The dual threat quarterback hopes to torch the Sooners defense again this year. Sophomore running back Keaontay Ingram has rushed for 3 touchdowns this season and senior wideout Devin Duvernay has caught 4 touchdowns. Look for these guys to help Ehlinger out offensively and give the Sooners multiple threats to worry about on defense.
Oklahoma begins the week 5-0 and ranked #6 in the latest Associated Press Poll. Lincoln Riley is at the helm for his 3rd season as well. The Sooners have defeated Houston, South Dakota, UCLA, Texas Tech, and Kansas. Senior transfer quarterback Jalen Hurts has thrown for 1,524 yards and 14 touchdowns. Hurts also ran for 7 touchdowns this season. The Sooners offense has picked up where Kyler Murray left it at the end of 2018. Jalen has come into this system and has fit like a glove. Six weeks in, Hurts is one of the front runners for the 2019 Heisman Trophy. Junior receiver Ceedee Lamb has caught 7 touchdowns this season. Lamb can do it all on the outside. He can catch the short and deep balls effectively. The Hurts-Lamb connection can give this Texas defense fits for 4 quarters.
2018 Game Recap
Last year, these two teams played an instant classic. The Longhorns prevailed 48-45 on a 40 yard field goal from Cameron Dicker. Texas led 45-24 heading into the 4th quarter. Kyler Murray led his Sooners on a 21-0 run to tie the game. Trey Sermon scored the game tying touchdown with 2:38 left in the game. Sam Ehlinger took the Texas offense right down the field to set up Dicker for the game winning field goal. Even thought Texas won this game, the two teams would matchup in the Big 12 Championship game in December. Oklahoma would get revenge and win 39-27. Kyler Murray was awarded the Heisman Trophy and Oklahoma earned a spot in the 2019 College Football Playoff. Texas won the battle in 2018, Oklahoma won the war.
2019 Game Preview
Without a doubt, 2019 could give us a carbon copy of what we saw last year. The winner of this game will not be able to celebrate too much because they could see each other again in December. We all know that Big 12 teams do not play good defense. This game being another shootout and coming down to the wire. The winner of this game will be the one who can limit turnovers and who can score more touchdowns than field goals. With a shootout on the horizon, you got to score touchdowns to stay close on the scoreboard.
Jalen Hurts looks unstoppable. As a result, Texas will struggle in keeping him under wraps. Even with the quarterback situation favoring Oklahoma, Sam Ehlinger is no slouch to the big stage. Ehlinger and company will be up to the task of upsetting the #6 ranked Sooners. I cannot wait for another instant classic in this rivalry. It has been awhile since this rivalry has resulted in the winner getting an inside track to the National Championship. With the good old days back upon us, this rivalry has become less one sided and more balanced. I’m excited to see how things play out on Saturday. Break out the fried food and cannons, this is going to be good. Saddle up partner.