BEVO BEAT Football

Texas 33, West Virginia 16: Longhorns beat first ranked team at home since 2008

Posted November 8th, 2014

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IT’S OVER.

Texas has upset 23rd-ranked West Virginia, 33-16.

With the win, Texas:

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(1) Evened the all-time series with the Mountaineers, 2-2.

(2) Snapped a trend that saw the road team win every previous game of this matchup.

(3) Snapped a seven-game losing streak against ranked teams, dating back to last year’s win over Oklahoma.

(4) Beat a ranked team at Royal-Memorial Stadium for the first time since Oct. 25, 2008.

(5) Places itself in excellent position to get a bowl bid. The Longhorns, at 5-5, need one win in their final two games — next Saturday at Oklahoma State, or at home vs. TCU on Thanksgiving.

Game balls:

Offense — The offensive line. Sounds strange, doesn’t it? But this may have been the O-line’s best game of the season. It was a particularly good day for right guard Kent Perkins. The line opened holes and lanes for Malcolm Brown and Johnathan Gray and also did an excellent job of protecting Tyrone Swoopes, who wasn’t sacked.

Defense — Quandre Diggs. Two big hits, one big pick and one huge coverage assignment. Jordan Hicks, who denied WVU a third-quarter touchdown on back-to-back open-field tackles on third and fourth downs around the 5-yard line, was all over the place.

Why Texas won: The defense frustrated West Virginia’s passing game and held its running game in check, and Cedric Reed (12 tackles, 3 sacks, 1 safety, 1 forced fumble) looked so 2013. Finally. Texas’ running game, meanwhile, looked better than it has all season. The Longhorns produced a 100-yard rusher (Gray, 10-101-3) for the second straight week.

Why West Virginia lost: The Mountaineers’ high-scoring offense lost its matchup with the Longhorns’ stingy defense. Clint Trickett (36-49-248, 0/1) never got untracked. Kevin White certainly got his numbers (15 catches for 132 yards) but was kept out of the end zone. As was WVU for most of the night.

How they scored:

1st quarter (6:35): Texas, Geoff Swaim 2-yard pass from Tyrone Swoopes (Nick Rose kick). Texas, 7-0.
1st quarter (3:10): WVU, Josh Lambert 22-yard field goal. Texas, 7-3.
2nd quarter (8:56): Texas, Johnathan Gray 39-yard run (Rose kick). Texas, 14-3.
2nd quarter (6:19): Texas, Gray 2-yard run (Rose kick). Texas, 21-3.
2nd quarter (1:12): Texas, Rose 39-yard field goal. Texas, 24-3.
4th quarter (13:25): WVU, Dreamius Smith 9-yard run (Lambert kick). Texas, 24-10.
4th quarter (10:36): Texas, safety (Cedric Reed sack). Texas, 26-10.
4th quarter (6:38): WVU, Wendell Smallwood 3 run (pass failed). Texas, 26-16.
4th quarter (3:06): Texas, Gray 15 run (Rose kick). Texas, 33-16.

Some final stats:

Total yards: WVU 448, Texas 351
Rushing yards: Texas 227, WVU 200
Passing yards: WVU 248, Texas 124
First downs: WVU 24, Texas 19
3rd-down conversions: Texas 4 of 5, WVU 3 of 17
4th-down conversions: WVU 3 of 5, Texas 0 of 1
Turnovers: WVU 2, Texas 1
Sacks: Texas 3, WVU 0
Time of possession: WVU 31:46, Texas 28:14

Passing: Texas — Tyrone Swoopes 11-29-124, 1/1. WVU — Clint Trickett 36-49-248, 0/1
Rushing: Texas — Johnathan Gray 10-101-3, Malcolm Brown 20-90, Daje Johnson 2-24, D’Onta Foreman 5-13, Swoopes 2-(-1); WVU — Dreamius Smith 10-100-1, Wendell Smallwood 13-45-1, Andrew Buie 5-30, Rushel Shell 5-22
Receiving: Texas — Jaxon Shipley 3-38, Marcus Johnson 3-23, John Harris 2-45, M.J. McFarland 1-9, Foreman 1-7, Geoff Swaim 1-2; WVU — Kevin White 16-132, Jordan Thompson 5-43, Mario Alford 5-31, Smith 4-20, Smallwood 4-10, Buie 1-6, Cody Clay 1-6

With the win, Texas improves to 5-5 overall, 4-3 in the Big 12. West Virginia drops to 6-4, 4-3.

Earlier updates …

FOURTH QUARTER.

There’s 3:06 left.

It’s Texas 33, West Virginia 16.

Texas’ defense gift-wrapped the Longhorns’ game-sealing score — Johnathan Gray‘s 15-yard touchdown run off the left side.

The Longhorns forced a turnover on downs on WVU’s previous possession. Mykkele Thompson‘s big solo tackle on Clint Trickett after a quarterback keeper on third down was the key play; he threw incomplete on fourth down under pressure from Malcom Brown.

That handed the ball over to Texas at the 15-yard line. Gray scored on the first play.

Gray, by the way, went over the 100-yard mark for the first time this season on his touchdown run. He’s got 10 carries for 101 yards and three touchdowns.

Malcolm Brown, who had 100 yards last week at Texas Tech, has 20 carries for 90 yards.

Earlier updates …

FOURTH QUARTER.

There’s 6:38 left.

It’s Texas 26, West Virginia 16.

Wendell Smallwood‘s 3-yard touchdown run put the Mountaineers within striking distance, but down 16 points, WVU needed two touchdowns and two 2-point conversions to come back.

The first of those 2-point conversions failed.

Dreamius Smith‘s big 62-yard run down the right sideline set up the score.

Texas recovered the onside kick.

Cedric Reed continues to have a big impact on this game. After his second sack produced a safety, his third sack stripped Clint Trickett of the ball and it was recovered by the Longhorns. Texas couldn’t produce any points even with the good starting field position, however.

Earlier updates …

FOURTH QUARTER.

There’s 10:36 left.

It’s Texas 26, West Virginia 10.

There’s been a Cedric Reed sighting at Royal-Memorial Stadium today.

Texas’ senior defensive end, mired in a 1.5-sack season, has had two of them today — including a sack of Clint Trickett in the end zone for a safety that’s turned momentum back onto the Longhorns’ side.

Credit Michael Davidson for at least some of that, however. Texas’ punter, who replaced William Russ in the first half, uncorked a 63-yard punt that was downed at the 1 after the Longhorns’ previous drive stalled.

Texas has the ball in WVU territory, after the kick following the safety.

Earlier updates …

FOURTH QUARTER.

There’s 13:25 left.

It’s Texas 24, West Virginia 10.

The Mountaineers, who have scored 30 or more points in all but one of their nine games this season, have cut Texas’ lead to two touchdowns on Dreamius Smith‘s 9-yard touchdown run.

West Virginia has had scoring opportunities on its last three drives, but managed to produce points only on this one. Two drives ago, Texas turned the Mountaineers away four times inside the 10-yard line, and WVU turned it over on downs. On WVU’s previous drive, Josh Lambert missed a 40-yard field goal attempt.

WVU has been going for it on fourth downs. The Mountaineers are 3 of 4 on fourth-down conversion chances.

Earlier updates …

THIRD QUARTER.

There’s 8:38 left.

It’s still Texas 24, West Virginia 3.

And that in itself is news. The Longhorns have denied the Mountaineers a touchdown with a spirited stand for the second time today, this time stopping West Virginia on a fourth-and-goal play.

The hero of the drive? Senior linebacker Jordan Hicks, who made back-to-back open-field tackles on third and fourth downs.

Texas’ opening drive of the third quarter stalled at midfield, when Tyrone Swoopes and John Harris couldn’t connect on a pass inside the 5.

A facemask penalty on the punt set West Virginia up at its own 42.

The Longhorns, up by three touchdowns, will start their second drive of the second half at their own 9-yard line.

Earlier updates …

IT’S HALFTIME.

Texas is leading West Virginia, 24-3.

Texas’ running game staked the Longhorns to a nice lead, but it was the defense that’s helped turn this into a precarious situation for the 23rd-ranked Mountaineers.

Quandre Diggs, who’s already given up a handful of receptions to Kevin White today, picked off a Clint Trickett pass and helped set up Texas’ latest score — a 39-yard field goal from Nick Rose.

Cedric Reed sacked Trickett on WVU’s final drive of the half.

Both Johnathan Gray and Malcolm Brown, who have looked very good in the first half, are shaken up. Brown took a hard hit on the tail end of his 25-yard run on the previous drive, and Gray was dinged up as well.

D’Onta Foreman has handled the rushing duties the last two drives.

Daje Johnson, on his first touch of the game, raced 29 yards for a first down into WVU territory on a jet sweep in Texas’ previous drive, which ended with a missed 46-yard field goal kick from Rose; it was blocked at the line.

How they’ve scored:

1st quarter (6:35): Texas, Geoff Swaim 2-yard pass from Tyrone Swoopes (Nick Rose kick). Texas, 7-0.
1st quarter (3:10): WVU, Josh Lambert 22-yard field goal. Texas, 7-3.
2nd quarter (8:56): Texas, Johnathan Gray 39-yard run (Rose kick). Texas, 14-3.
2nd quarter (6:19): Texas, Gray 2-yard run (Rose kick). Texas, 21-3.
2nd quarter (1:12): Texas, Rose 39-yard field goal. Texas, 24-3.

Some first-half stats:

Total yards: Texas 266, WVU 141
Rushing yards: Texas 178, WVU 42
Passing yards: WVU 99, Texas 88
First downs: Texas 14, WVU 7
3rd-down conversions: Texas 3 of 7, WVU 2 of 9
Turnovers: WVU 1, Texas 0
Sacks: Texas 1, WVU 0
Time of possession: Texas 15:24, WVU 14:36

Passing: Texas — Tyrone Swoopes 8-14-88, 1/0. WVU — Clint Trickett 13-17-99, 0/1
Rushing: Texas — Johnathan Gray 5-85-2, Malcolm Brown 10-63, Daje Johnson 1-22, D’Onta Foreman 5-13, Swoopes 1-(-5); WVU — Wendell Smallwood 8-25, Rushel Shell 5-22, Andrew Buie 2-5, Dreamius Smith 1-0
Receiving: Texas — Jaxon Shipley 2-25, Marcus Johnson 2-16, John Harris 1-29, M.J. McFarland 1-9, Geoff Swaim 1-2; WVU — Kevin White 6-65, Mario Alford 2-14, Smith 2-9, Smallwood 2-5

Earlier updates …

SECOND QUARTER.

There’s 5:09 left.

It’s Texas 21, West Virginia 3.

Hello, running game.

The Longhorns are in control of this game, which is heading toward halftime, and have the running game clicking. Big time.

On back-to-back plays, Malcolm Brown rattled off a 25-yard run and Johnathan Gray for 40 yards, making two nice open-field moves down to West Virginia’s 13-yard line.

Tyrone Swoopes, under pressure, underthrew a fade route to Jaxon Shipley in the end zone, but because it was an underthrow, cornerback Ishmael Banks bumped into Shipley and was called for pass interference.

That set up a 2-yard touchdown run from Gray.

For those on 100-yard rushing watch, Gray has five carries for 85 yards and two touchdowns, and Brown has 10 carries for 63 yards.

Brown was shaken up on his big run, after a hard hit to his head or shoulder area.

Earlier updates …

SECOND QUARTER.

There’s 8:56 left.

It’s Texas 14, West Virginia 3.

Johnathan Gray just provided this game’s first “wow” play, a nice 39-yard touchdown run down the left sideline that ended with a dive into the end zone, a disputed call, and an instant-replay reversal that ruled Gray did indeed get the touchdown.

It was a short drive — three plays, 52 yards. The drive started at Texas’ 48-yard line.

The touchdown broke a stretch of bad drives from both teams. West Virginia couldn’t take advantage of great field position on one (Texas’ 48) or get out of the shadow of their own end zone on the other (starting position: WVU’s 1-yard line). Punted both times.

Texas hadn’t fared any better, settling for punts as well.

One of those, however, was a 23-yard shank from William Russ. On Texas’ next punt, he was replaced by Michael Davidson, who promptly fired off a 39-yard punt that was downed at the 1-yard line by Adrian Colbert.

Gray has rushed for 43 yards to lead Texas; Malcolm Brown had 38.

Earlier updates …

FIRST QUARTER.

There’s 3:10 left.

It’s Texas 7, West Virginia 3.

The Mountaineers, sparked by a big 48-yard kickoff return from Mario Alford, have answered Texas’ touchdown with a score of their own. But it was the Longhorns who left the field feeling the momentum.

A goal-line stand will do that for you. West Virginia, lined up right on the goal line, couldn’t get the touchdown in three tries and had to settle for a 22-yard field goal from Josh Lambert.

Jordan Hicks made a nice play in the backfield on first-and-goal, wrapping up Wendell Smallwood for no gain; Clint Trickett overthrew a fade route to Kevin White in the corner of the end zone, with Quandre Diggs defending; and Smallwood was stuffed at the goal line by a gaggle of tacklers, Steve Edmond making the hit.

The play was reviewed, and upheld.

But on fourth-and-goal, WVU tight end Darren Arndt was called for a false start. That changed the Mountaineers’ minds, and they went for the field goal.

Clint Trickett and Kevin White continue to find each other. After making two grabs (for 35 yards) on the Mountaineers’ first drive, White had 19- and 8-yarders on the second series.

Earlier updates …

FIRST QUARTER.

There’s 6:20 left.

It’s Texas 7, West Virginia 0.

Things couldn’t be working out much better for Texas in terms of how to start this game.

West Virginia’s first drive — the Mountaineers got the ball to start the game — had some early traction, particularly with the Clint Trickett-to-Kevin White combination, but stalled at midfield. West Virginia punted.

Then the Longhorns, starting at their own 10, put together an 11-play, 90-yard drive that gobbled up 6:01 of game clock, ending with a 2-yard touchdown pass from Tyrone Swoopes to Geoff Swaim, on a third-and-goal play.

Early impressions?

Malcolm Brown looks like he’ll break 100 yards again. He’s already got 33 yards after six carries on the opening drive.

John Harris and White should put on a nice receivers’ duel. White caught two passes on WVU’s opening drive, for 35 yards. One of those was a 21-yard play. Harris had a big 29-yard catch on Texas’ first drive that move the Longhorns inside the red zone.

Trickett and White may have a good day. On WVU’s very first play, they challenged Quandre Diggs, who was covering White. White not only caught the 14-yard pass, but Diggs also was flagged for pass interference on the play.

Texas’ offensive line, minus Darius James as a backup (he’s been ruled out for this game), is off to a good start, both in terms of opening holes and lanes, which Brown has taken advantage of, as well as protecting Swoopes.

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