John Hoover

John E. Hoover: Big-play Sooners outlast Longhorns in Red River Rivalry

John E. Hoover: Big-play Sooners outlast Longhorns in Red River Rivalry
Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield throws against Texas on Saturday in the Cotton Bowl. The Sooners won 45-40 as Mayfield threw for 390 yards and three touchdowns. (PHOTO: SoonerSports.com)

Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield throws against Texas on Saturday in the Cotton Bowl. The Sooners won 45-40 as Mayfield threw for 390 yards and three touchdowns. (PHOTO: SoonerSports.com)

DALLAS — Baker Mayfield passed for a series record 390 yards and three touchdowns — including 232 yards and all three scores to Dede Westbrook — and Samaje Perine rushed for 214 yards and two TDs as No. 20-ranked Oklahoma pulled away from Texas 45-40 on Saturday in the 111th Red River Rivalry.

A sellout crowd of more than 92,000 watched the Sooners improve to 3-2 overall and 2-0 in Big 12 Conference play, while Texas fell to 2-3 and 0-2.

Texas led 27-21 early in the third quarter after a 45-yard touchdown pass from Shane Buechele to Dorian Leonard.

But Oklahoma scored on four consecutive cross-country possessions to take command.

After Westbrook’s 42-yard touchdown grab from Mayfield gave OU a 21-20 lead, Leonard’s TD put the Horns back on top with 10:43 left in the third.

Oklahoma responded with TD marches of 85 yards (capped by a 4-yard TD run from Mayfield), 76 yards (a Mayfield-to-Westbrook zig-zag TD finished it), 93 yards (Perine cashed it in with a three-yard TD) to extend the margin to 42-27 with 11:53 to play.

Texas still managed two more touchdowns, including a 10-yard pass from Buechele to Armant Foreman and a 22-yard run by D’Onta Foreman, who rushed for 159 yards and two touchdowns on the day.

But between those Texas TDs, Austin Seibert banked a 39-yard field goal off the right upright at the end of a 60-yard drive to make it a two-score game.

After D’Onta Foreman’s last TD, Buechele’s 2-point pass into the end zone sailed high, and the Sooners recovered the Horns’ onside kick.

The Sooners endured the loss of two more defensive starters (safety Ahmad Thomas and cornerback Michiah Quick), bringing their total to six on the season.

OU finished with 672 yards total offense, including 282 rushing and 390 passing.

The Sooners turned the ball over four times, including two early interceptions by Mayfield, but Texas managed only three points off those turnovers.

Mayfield also fumbled in the final seconds as OU was trying to run out the clock, but offensive tackle Bobby Evans came back to cover the football and allow the Sooners a punt.

Texas’ final play was a seven-lateral desperation attempt off a Buechele scramble that ended with Jordan Thomas’ final tackle.


Columnist John E. Hoover is co-host of “Further Review with Hoover & Rew” and can be heard on The Franchise Tulsa from noon to 3 p.m. every weekday with co-host Lauren Rew and most mornings on The Franchise in Oklahoma City. Listen on fm107.9, am1270 on the 107.7 Franchise app, or click the “Listen tab on The Franchise home page.

John Hoover

Hoover wrote for the Tulsa World for 24 years before joining The Franchise, where he's now co-host of "Further Review" on The Franchise Tulsa (weekdays 12-3, fm107.9/am1270) . In his time at the World, Hoover won numerous writing and reporting awards, including in 2011 National Beat Writer of the Year from the Associated Press Sports Editors for his work covering the Oklahoma Sooners. Hoover also covered Oklahoma State, Arkansas, Oral Roberts and the NFL as a beat writer. From 2012 to 2016, Hoover was the World's lead sports columnist. As a columnist, Hoover won national awards in 2012 and 2014 from the National Athletic Trainers Association for reporting on sports medicine and in 2015 won first place in sports columns from the Oklahoma Society of Professional Journalists. After receiving a journalism degree from East Central University, Hoover worked at newspapers in Ada, Okmulgee, Tahlequah and Waynesville, Mo. He played football at Ada High School and grew up in North Pole, Alaska. Hoover and his family live in Broken Arrow.

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