DALLAS — Travis Lewis took the Golden Hat trophy and treated it like a real hat, holding it to his head as he trotted along the field, waving to the thousands of Oklahoma fans still in their seats. When he got to the section where friends and family were sitting, Lewis walked alongside the railing, holding out the trophy for folks to touch.
So many people starred in this resounding victory that it only made sense for plenty of people to take part in the celebration.
Landry Jones threw three touchdown passes, Dominique Whaley ran 64 yards for a touchdown and three defensive players found their way into the end zone, too, powering No. 3 Oklahoma to a 55-17 victory over No. 11 Texas on Saturday – the kind of whipping that could help the Sooners return to the top of the poll.
Oklahoma was No. 1 from the preseason until two weeks ago. The Sooners slipped to second after struggling at home against Missouri, then to third even after whipping lowly Ball State. Voters were more impressed by what they saw from Southeastern Conference heavyweights Louisiana State and Alabama.
This performance, however, showed that Oklahoma is as good as folks originally thought.
The Sooners (5-0, 2-0 Big 12) were precise on offense and swarming on defense. They scored the first four times they had the ball and cruised to leads of 24 at halftime and 45 midway through the fourth quarter. Texas’ only touchdown on offense came in the final minutes, long after Oklahoma was on its way to the most lopsided win over its Red River rival since 2003, when it won by a series-record 52 points.
“It was an excellent day,” Sooners coach Bob Stoops said. “To come down in here in this situation and win like that is really pretty special.”
Jones was 31 of 50 for 367 yards. He improved to 2-0 against the Longhorns.
Oklahoma’s most impressive feat was the three defensive touchdowns: an interception returned 55 yards from Demontre Hurst, a sack-fumble returned 19 yards by David King and a vicious strip of a receiver taken 56 yards by Jamell Fleming . It was the first time in the school’s long, proud history that its defense has scored three times in one game, and only the second time a pair of fumbles were returned for TDs. Oklahoma matched another school record with eight sacks.
“To me there is nothing more fun than a defensive touchdown when you’re on that side of it,” Stoops said.
Ryan Broyles caught nine passes for 122 yards, leaving him four receptions shy of the NCAA career record. He also tied a conference record with his 42nd career TD catch.