On a cold, frigid afternoon, Texas suddenly had a chance to control its own destiny on Saturday. But it was unable to capitalize, as it fell to Baylor 30-10 in what turned out to be the de facto Big 12 championship game.
The Longhorns went into Floyd Casey Stadium for the last time, but poor execution and missed opportunities highlighted their final game and ended another subpar season.
“It’s disappointing,” senior quarterback Case McCoy said. “It’s disappointing for the seniors who played for this team and the coaches. It’s a hard loss to take when it was so close. It was something we fought for and worked for to get to this point. It’s a disappointing feeling.”
Texas let the Bears get on the board first with an early field goal, but that was the only points Texas allowed Baylor to score in the first 30 minutes. Texas had several opportunities to pull ahead in the first half. The Bears missed a field goal and failed to convert on a fake punt but the Longhorns capitalized on neither opportunity.
Baylor took advantage of a stiched-together Texas defense, riddled by injuries, in third quarter. The Bears added 17 points in the third quarter, thanks to two touchdowns on their first two second half drives, to enter the fouth quarter with a 20-3 lead.
“I thought [Baylor] made a couple of plays in the third quarter,” Mack Brown said. “They got their rhythm going, and we never did.”
Texas still had a chance in the fourth quarter with the wind at its back to win the game, but, once again, failed to capitalize on its opportunities.
“We fought our way back,” Brown said. “I thought that with four minutes left we could win…We didn’t make the plays that we needed to make. I’m proud of the way we played this year, but disappointed in tonight.”
Senior quarterback Case McCoy recorded just 54 yards passing, completing 12 of his 34 attempts. The most offensive production came from junior running back Malcolm Brown who totaled 131 rushing yards to and a touchdown reception.
“We weren’t consistent on offense,” head coach Mack Brown said. “We didn’t hit any passes. We just weren’t consistent on offense at all. It was just an ugly night for us offensively. I'm very disappointed.”
Disappointing seems to be the key word to describe Texas’ season finale. Greg Robinson’s defense gave up 508 total yards of offense to the Bears, who earned the program's first-ever Big 12 title. Baylor quarterback Bryce Petty threw for 287 yards to secure the school’s first BCS bowl game appearance.
“I thought we fought hard, but we made a lot of mistakes and couldn’t get rolling early on,” McCoy said. “Their offense had the same struggles. But they came out in the second half and go it together but we didn’t.”