Not much room for error against unbeaten Oklahoma in this year’s Red River Rivalry

Ryan Haddox

Texas wins if…

…it pulls out all the stops. It has to throw everything it can at the Sooners to leave the Cotton Bowl victorious Saturday. That includes the kitchen sink, bathroom sinks, ceiling fans, everything. With David Ash ruled out and Case McCoy getting his third start, the Longhorns offense will effectively start the game with one hand tied behind its back. Co-offensive coordinators Major Applewhite and Darrell Wyatt are going to have to reach into the deepest, darkest corners of their playbooks to give the Longhorns a chance. In the last two bloodbaths in Dallas, the Longhorns started conservative. They tried to establish a running game, failed, and found
themselves down by multiple touchdowns before being forced to change the plan. Airing it out with McCoy isn’t the answer either, but getting the ball to their playmakers in space, early, and by any means necessary will be imperative if the Longhorns have any chance. They haven’t shown it yet this year or at any point in the last two Red River Rivalries, but if the Longhorns are willing to engage in a cage match with the Sooners and start the game looking like they’re trying to win it instead of trying not lose, they may have an outside chance of snapping their three game losing streak in Dallas.


Texas loses if…

…it sticks to its recent scripts they’ve taken to Dallas. Texas fumbled on their opening drive in 2011, and had four quick three-and-outs to start the game in 2012. Texas trailed by a combined score of 70-12 by halftime of the two games, and another slow, conservative start will give Bob Stoops and Co. another chance to see how high the numbers on the Cotton Bowl scoreboard can reach. The zone-read continues to be a problem plaguing the Longhorn defense. Blake Bell and the Sooners offense will be making sure that trend continues another week.  If the Longhorns don’t come out swinging for their lives, tackle soundly and play physically, they will find themselves in the middle of a third consecutive rout at the hands of their most hated rival, sending a senior class towards graduation without ever knowing what its like to leave the Cotton Bowl with a victory.