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NCAAF – 1984 – Texas Vs Oklahoma Halftime Show – With UT Band + Story Of ColoSt RB Tom Southall –

For the first time since 1965, the Texas Longhorns (3-0) entered the Red River Rivalry game in Dallas as the top-ranked team in the country on October 13, 1984 at the Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas, Texas before 75,587 fans.  Under eighth-year head coach Fred Akers, the Horns were the defending Southwestern Conference champions….but a disappointing 10 – 9 loss to Georgia in the Cotton Bowl had ruined their undefeated season….and cost them a possible national championship….which would likely have been theirs after the Nebraska loss to Miami later that evening.

Despite an all-time record 17 Longhorns being selected in the ’84 NFL draft….Texas began the ’84 season ranked 6th in the country…..and moved up two notches to # 4 before even playing a game. But a win over preseason favorite and # 11 Auburn was followed by an impressive win over # 4 Penn State….thus allowing the Horns to claim the AP’s top spot in the October 2nd poll. It was the first time in three years the Longhorns had been # 1….since beating Oklahoma 34-14 to claim the spot….only to lose it a week later after an Arkansas loss.

The Texas offense was averaging 33.7 points per game and was very experienced. It was under the capable direction of senior QB Todd Dodge….and among his many weapons were a pair of seniors, RB Terry Orr and WR Bill Boy Bryant. The Longhorn defense had permitted 14.3 points per game….and featured a pair of senior past all-conference performers in DT Tony Degrate and All-American CB Jerry Gray.

Meanwhile, the Oklahoma Sooners were coming off three consecutive four-loss seasons…..the 1st ever under Barry Switzer….and began the year ranked # 16 in the preseason. They were off to their first 4-0 start in five years….with wins over Stanford, # 17 Pittsburgh, Baylor and Kansas State….while entering  the game ranked 3rd….their highest entering the Texas contest in five years. But they were still carrying a seven-game winless streak against top-ranked teams during the last 20 years.

Oklahoma came into the game with the nation’s second-ranked defense….while having allowed an average of 9.5 points per game. Under the guidance of fourth-year DC Gary Gibbs….it was a young, quick and menacing group that featured nose tackle Tony Casillas, DT Steve Bryan, a pair of freshman ends in Troy Johnson and Darrell Reed….and a tough pair of linebackers, sophomore Paul Migliazzo and a freshman named Brian Bosworth, who hailed from Irving, TX. The offense was averaging 29.8 points per game….and was an experienced group that featured QB Danny Bradley, RB Steve Sewell and TE Buster Rhymes. A hamstring injury to sophomore RB Spencer Tillman would put a damper on the Oklahoma attack.

Switzer had earlier predicted that neither team would be able to dominate by running the ball. Amid rainy conditions, and to the roar of 75,587 bundled-up fans, the players stormed onto the soggy, but storied, Cotton Bowl field. There was electricity in the air, the kind of energy that always seems to separate the Texas-Oklahoma rivalry of bordering states.

In the first quarter, Oklahoma punter Mike Winchester bobbled a perfect snap….and Texas took over with the first chance to cash in at the Sooners’ 20-yard line. Against Oklahoma’s aggressive man-to-man defense, the Longhorns placed two wide receivers to the same side. The outside receiver ran a short post route over the middle…..while the inside receiver, Bryant, ran a short out and then took off down the field as a Sooner bit on the fake. Dodge almost fell on the wet turf, but he was able to stabilize himself, find Bryant, who had darted wide open past senior defensive back Keith Stanberry…..and heaved a 25-yard touchdown pass. Jeff Ward added the extra point, and it was 7-0.

The punting of Texas’ John Teltschik kept the Sooners backed up in the second quarter until OU tailback  Tillman, playing in his first game of the season, fumbled a pitch out at the Sooner 26. Gray jumped on the ball, and four plays later, Ward added a field goal to give Texas a 10-0 lead….which the pumped Longhorns took to the locker room despite having gained just one first down.


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