In his six years as offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State from 2013-2018, Mike Yurcich’s Cowboys went 5–1 against the Longhorns, putting up totals of 30, 38 and 49 in three different games.
The five wins from 2013-2018 account for more than half of Oklahoma State’s all-time wins against the Longhorns, who lead the series 25–9. The only Cowboy wins not from the past decade came in 1944 and 1997.
Yurcich will try to keep it that way this Saturday, as the play-caller joined head coach Tom Herman’s staff this season.
“I had always admired (Yurcich’s) offenses at Oklahoma State,” Herman said in a Monday teleconference. “We talked ball before I even got in the Big 12. Our paths had crossed casually, and we’d talk ball.”
In its past decade of success against Texas, Oklahoma State hasn’t struggled to put points on the board, averaging 31.2 points across 10 games. Yurcich’s high-powered offense led six of those games.
His offense in 2017 set the Cowboys’ school record, averaging 577 yards per game. But the 2017 matchup between the Cowboys and Longhorns was a gutsy, 13-10 overtime win for Oklahoma State. Texas limited one of the top offenses in the country but failed to score on its own end.
So history tells us Saturday could be a shootout with an Oklahoma State offense that has so often burned Texas defenses in the past. The Vegas line is set at over-under 58.5 points.
But, in this budding rivalry, nothing is predictable. Yurcich learned this in 2017.
GAME TO REMEMBER:
While Texas appeared dominant over Oklahoma State in the 2000s, the game scores could be slightly misleading.
In 2003, the Cowboys led the Longhorns 16-7 in the second quarter before losing 55-16. Oklahoma State had a 35-7 first-half lead over Texas in its 2004 matchup before losing 56-35. Then, in 2005, the Cowboys led 28-9 before losing 47-28.
The Longhorns pulled off arguably the greatest of their four comebacks against the Cowboys in 2007.
Texas fell behind 21-0 in the first minute of the second quarter and trailed 35-14 in the fourth quarter before then-junior running back Jamaal Charles put his mark on the game.
Charles, who would end the game with 180 yards on 16 carries and three touchdowns, scored on an 18-yard touchdown run to make the score 35-21.
Then, on his next rushing attempt on Texas’s next drive, Charles took the rock 75 yards to the house to bring the Longhorns within striking distance at 35-28.
Then-sophomore quarterback Colt McCoy threw a 60-yard pass to then-sophomore wide receiver Jordan Shipley to set up another touchdown on the next drive, evening the score at 35-35.
"The last nine minutes of the game, (McCoy) never blinked," then-head coach Mack Brown said to the Associated Press.
It seemed like the Cowboys would manage to get the last shot and eke out a win when Oklahoma State lined up for a 32-yard field goal with only one minute and 13 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter. But then-senior kicker Jason Ricks missed, and the duo of McCoy and Charles took the Longhorns back down the field to set up a 40-yard field goal try for then-sophomore kicker Ryan Bailey.
Unlike Ricks, Bailey put the ball through the uprights under pressure and capped off a great Texas comeback.
HISTORY IN THE MAKING:
Sept. 21, 2019: University of Texas at Austin vs. Oklahoma State University, Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium, 36-30
Oct. 27, 2018: University of Texas at Austin at Oklahoma University, Boone Pickens Stadium, 35-38
Oct. 21, 2017: University of Texas at Austin vs. Oklahoma State University, Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium, 10-13
Oct. 1, 2016: University of Texas at Austin at Oklahoma University, Boone Pickens Stadium, 31-49
Sept. 26, 2015: University of Texas at Austin vs. Oklahoma State University, Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium, 27-30