The football season is approaching fast, and Texas fans are getting excited. Counting today, there are 20 days until the start of the football season. To help celebrate, we’re counting down five things every day until the start of the season.
Texas opens the 2016 season against Notre Dame, one of the most storied football programs in the history of college athletics and by far (don’t even debate this) the most famous private university in America (OK, Harvard and Yale, you can complain). In many states, the “Private School vs. Public School” athletic showdowns are a big deal. In most states, the prep scene is dominated by private high schools. In Texas, not so much. But how has Texas, a public university, fared against private schools? And what are the biggest wins over a private school?
First, there are some interesting things about Texas’ bouts with private schools. In 1910, Baylor left the field because of a disagreement with the referees and forfeited the game. Officially Texas won 1-0, but the game was tied 6-6. In 1993 against Syracuse, who was ranked No. 6 in the country, Texas tied 21-21 with the Orange in Austin. Texas has a 72-21-1 record over Rice, a 74-26-4 record over Baylor but has a 0-1 record against private schools like: Harvard, University of Chicago and Northwestern.
Here are the five biggest wins Texas has had over a private school:
5. Texas 7, Notre Dame 6, Oct. 6,1934
Texas coach Jack Chevigny is the only coach in program history with a losing record, but he was a star for Notre Dame and scored the winning touchdown for the Gipper. This was a big win because Notre Dame was the football program in America. The Irish were bigger than the Beatles in the 1930s, and Texas went to South Bend and beat them.
4. Texas 21, Baylor 20, Nov. 7, 1953
Baylor was ranked No. 3 in the nation when they came to Austin to face coach Ed Price’s team. Texas led at halftime 14-13 and a 23-yard pass from Charles Brewer to Delano Womack gave Texas a lead. Baylor scored early in the fourth quarter, but Texas hung on. The Longhorns went on to beat TCU and Texas A&M and finished the season 7-3 and 5-1 in the Southwest Conference, winning the title. Baylor, who was 6-0 at the time, spiraled and lost to Houston and Rice and finished third in the conference.
3. Texas 23, SMU 20, Nov. 4, 1950
Southern Methodist University was the No. 1-ranked team in the nation at the time and Texas was No. 7. We’re guessing that if ESPN existed in 1950, College Game Day would have been in Austin. Texas led 21-7 in the third quarter, but SMU outscored Texas 13-2 in the rest of the way but Texas prevented the comeback. Byron Townsend had 83 yards rushing and two touchdowns for Texas, while Ben Tompkins had 139 yards passing for the Longhorns. It is one of two games where Texas beat a private school that was currently ranked No. 1.
2. Texas 21, Notre Dame 17, Jan. 1970
No. 1-ranked Texas sealed its second National Championship under Darrell Royal with a come-from-behind win to beat Notre Dame in the Cotton Bowl. Texas trailed 17-14 with 6:52 left in the game (they were down 10-0 at one point), but Billy Dale scored with 1:08 left in the game and Happy Feller converted the extra point to give Texas a a four-point lead. Notre Dame never recovered and Texas held on for the win.
1. Texas 41, USC 38, Jan. 4, 2006
University of Southern California was trying to “three-Pete” under coach Pete Carroll and entered the game trying to cap one of the best three seasons any program in college football history has ever had. The Trojans waltzed to the championship with only a few “Bush-pushes” along the way. Texas ruined the party in USC’s backyard thanks to one of the greatest performances in college football history by Vince Young. The Houston native rushed for 200 yards and three touchdowns, threw for 267 yards and completed 30 passes in the win.
We’ve covered this game a lot. Here is that part of the game people forget: