Top 10 Games of the Red River Rivalry

The second weekend in October always means one very important thing to the folks in Oklahoma and Texas- the baddest football game of the season. Since the first game in 1900, The OU Sooners and the Texas Longhorns have converged on Dallas’ Cotton Bowl at the Texas State Fair for one of the finest match-ups in college football. It’s a game wrought with tradition, passion, a whole lot of crimson and a whole lot of burnt orange.

This Saturday will only be the eleventh time the Sooners and Longhorns have met whilst being top five ranked teams. The Sooners have held the #1 spot for the past two weeks, and the Longhorns are holding on to the #5 position. Texas leads the match-up, with an all-time record of 57–40–5, Oklahoma trailing with a record of 45–36–4; Oklahoma has won six of the last eight OU/Texas games. Here’s a look at the 10 previous games:

  • 1950: No. 3 Oklahoma 14, No. 4 Texas 13 – The Sooners rallied to win this game and the score put them in position to win their first national championship.

  • 1963: No. 2 Texas 28, No. 1 Oklahoma 7 – In Bud Wilkinson’s (legendary OU coach) last OU/Texas game, the Sooners basically handed the game over to Texas, landing them an 11-0 season.

  • 1971: No. 4 Oklahoma 48, No. 3 Texas 27 – This was one of those land rushes the Sooners are famous for, scooping a win out from underneath Texas and placing them in the Sugar Bowl.

  • 1975: No. 2 Oklahoma 24, No. 5 Texas 17– This game helped place OU and head coach Barry Switzer in position to win its 5th national championship. The game is more famously remembered for the poor-spirited fan who painted UT mascot “Bevo” with red paint.
  • 1977: No. 5 Texas 13, No. 2 Oklahoma 6– After a six-year dry spell, the Longhorns stole the game from OU, not allowing one touchdown to hit the scoreboard.

  • 1979: No. 4 Texas 16, No. 3 Oklahoma 7– New astroturf in the Cotton Bowl, Heisman winner Billy Sims didn’t play, and for winning, Oklahoma’s governor gifted Texas’ governor a buffalo. Bill Clements famously told his Longhorns “We’re gonna get [the buffalo] down here, we’re gonna barbecue it, and we’re going to feed you the best barbecue you’ve ever put in your mouths.”

  • 1984: No. 1 Texas 15, No. 3 Oklahoma 15– A game that ended up tied by Texas’ Jeff Ward, in which OU Coach Barry Switzer wore a “Beat Texas” hat and current Texas Coach Mack Brown was on the OU sideline as offensive coordinator.

  • 2001: No. 3 Oklahoma 14, No. 5 Texas 3 – One of future-Heisman winner Jason White’s first opportunities to shine on the football field, he played for injured Nate Hybl and led the win.
  • 2002: No. 2 Oklahoma 35, No. 3 Texas 24 – An intense game where OU’s Quentin Griffin stole the show from Texas’ Cedric Benson by rushing for 248 yards and setting a second highest rushing record in the series’ history.

  • 2004: No. 2 Oklahoma 12, No. 5 Texas 0 – The first shut-out game in 24 years proved OU’s dominance in the game that season and lead them to a national championship at the Orange Bowl.

Each year, the two governors make a bet that the losing team must deliver on. This year, the losing state leader will donate cases of steaks to an organization involved with helping those affected by Hurricane Ike.

As both campuses close today and students, alumni, faculty and fans storm into Dallas’ West End tonight, there will no doubt be plenty of chants screaming “Boomer Sooner!” and “Hook ’em Horns!”, as well as obnoxious digs at one another’s mascots.

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