The Opening Kickoff
The University of Texas and the University of Oklahoma square off in the 2016 version of the Red River Showdown on Saturday morning in Dallas. The rivalry, which has been played every year since 1929 at the Cotton Bowl, is considered one of college football's best. The Longhorns enter the game having lost two straight to fall to 2-2 overall. They are coming off a 49-31 loss at Oklahoma State last week to drop to 0-1 in the Big 12 Conference. Oklahoma also enters the game at 2-2 overall, having beaten TCU to open up conference play.
The All-Time Series
• Texas and Oklahoma meet for the 111th time on the gridiron Saturday in the Red River Showdown.
• The Longhorns own a record of 47-38-4 against the Sooners since the game began at the Cotton Bowl in 1929.
• The two teams have an identical 5-5 record in the last 10 matchups, with UT claiming a 24-17 win last season.
• Records and rankings can be thrown out the window in this rivalry, as Oklahoma has been ranked every year for the matchup since 2006, yet the Longhorns have claimed five wins in that span over the Sooners.
National Game Coverage
• Saturday's Red River Showdown in Dallas is set to kick off at 11:05 a.m. at the Cotton Bowl.
• FOX Sports 1 will televise the rivalry matchup between the Longhorns and the Sooners. Gus Johnson will call the action from the booth with Joel Klatt joining him to provide analysis. Shannon Spake will be on the sidelines.
• Compass Media Networks will provide a National radio broadcast. Gregg Daniels will deliver the play-by-play while Tony Hill is the color analyst.
• Beginning two hours prior to kickoff, tune into Longhorn Network's Texas GameDay show.
• A Texas radio broadcast can be heard nationally on Sirius channel 136, XM channel 199 and online channel 953.
A Texas Win Would...
• Improve the Longhorns' record to 62-44-5 all-time in the Red River Showdown
• Be Texas' second straight victory over the Sooners
• Give Texas their first Big 12 Conference win, improving their overall record to 3-2 on the season and 1-1 in the Big 12 Conference
• Mark UT's 889th victory in the 124-year history of the program
• Be Charlie Strong's 51st career win, improving his record to 51-32 overall and 14-16 at UT
• Make Charlie Strong 5-8 against ranked opponents while at Texas
• Be the Longhorns' second win over a Top-25 program this season and their fourth straight win over a ranked team
Red River Rivalry Traditions
Texas State Fair
• The Texas-Oklahoma game is once again a part of the State Fair of Texas in 2016.
• The tradition of playing at the State Fair began in 1929 when the game was played in an old wooden structure called Fair Park Stadium.
• The new structure, named the Cotton Bowl in 1936, was built in time for the 1930 matchup. The Cotton Bowl is named because, at the time, Dallas was the largest interior spot cotton market in the world.
The Battle Line
• One of the unique characteristics of the great rivalry between Texas and Oklahoma is the colors.
• Tickets are divided equally and the stadium is split in half - burnt orange and crimson - at the 50-yard line.
• As the away team in 2016, the Longhorns will wear their road white jerseys and occupy the east bench area (opposite the press box).
UT Torchlight Parade
• The annual Torchlight Parade is set for 8:00 p.m. Wednesday at the Main Mall on the UT campus.
• Head coach Charlie Strong and members of his team will be on hand at approximately 8:30 p.m.
The Governor's Cup
• The Governor's Cup is exchanged annually by the Governor of Texas and the Governor of Oklahoma following the AT&T Red River Showdown.
• The tradition started when Texas Governor Dolph Briscoe donated the trophy and each year it is transported from the office of the previous year's winning Governor to Dallas.
• It is displayed in the Hall of State on game day and transported to the office of the winning Governor after it has received its engraving.
The Golden Hat
• To the victor goes the Golden Hat, a rotating trophy given annually to the winner of the Texas-Oklahoma game.
• A gold cowboy hat that is mounted on a large block of wood, it has been part of the rivalry since the State Fair of Texas donated it in 1941.
• When the hat first arrived, it was known as the "Bronze Hat" and was actually made out of bronze.
• The hat was reworked in the 1970s and came out gold, hence the name change to the "Golden Hat".
Last Time Out Against The Sooners
• Texas entered last year's matchup against No. 10/9 Oklahoma at 1-4 overall, but the Longhorns used a strong defensive effort to hand Oklahoma a 24-17 loss - their only setback of the regular season in 2015.
• The Longhorns rushed for 313 yards in the game and saw both D'Onta Foreman (117) and Jerrod Heard (115) hit the century mark.
• UT's defense swarmed Baker Mayfield and the Sooners, registering six sacks in the win. The defense also held OU to 1.8 yards per carry. The Sooners managed just 15 yards in the first quarter and 85 for the entire first half.
• LB Malik Jefferson led the way with two sacks.
• Tyrone Swoopes scored a touchdown out of the 18-wheeler package, while Caleb Bluiett and Marcus Johnson also recorded touchdowns for the Longhorns in the victory.
Head Coach Charlie Strong
• Charlie Strong is in his third season as the head coach at Texas and his seventh overall season as a head coach. Strong is 13-16 (.448) in his career with the Longhorns, while compiling a career record of 50-32 (.610).
• Strong has the Longhorns sitting at 2-2 overall early on in the 2016 season having just started Big 12 Conference play. Strong has guided Texas to a 9-10 mark (.474) in Big 12 action.
• Prior to Texas, Strong was the head coach at Louisville for four seasons. He was 27-15 in four years with the Cardinals.
• In just seven years, Strong has led his teams to a bowl game five times, registered 11- and 12-win seasons and three bowl wins, including a Sugar Bowl title.
• Under Strong, Texas is 4-8 (.333) against ranked opponents. But, the Longhorns have won three straight over such foes (24-17 W vs. No. 10 Oklahoma and 23-17 W at No. 12 Baylor in 2015; 50-47 W vs. No. 10 Notre Dame in 2016).
• Strong is 1-1 in his tenure against Oklahoma, having defeated the Sooners' 24-17 in 2015.
Gilbert Making A Difference For Longhorns' Offense
• First-year offensive coordinator Sterlin Gilbert was brought to Texas to reinvigorate the Longhorns offense and install his up-tempo system on the 40 Acres.
• So far through the first four games, Gilbert's impact has been felt. The Longhorns are averaging 41.2 points per game, 517.2 yards per game, 83.3 plays per game and 27.3 first downs per game.
• This improvement for the Longhorns was not unexpected though, as Gilbert's past successes have provided a great indication of what his offenses can accomplish at UT.
• The Longhorns have already surpassed 500 yards of offense in three of their four games this season, including a season-high 568 at California and Oklahoma State in each of their last two games.
• Their 517 yards of total offense against No. 10 Notre Dame marked the first time since 2011 against Baylor that Texas has totaled more than 500 yards of offense against a ranked opponent.
• Through four games, the Longhorns have the nation's 15th-ranked offense, 12th-best rushing attack and the 23rd-rated scoring offense.
• Running back D'Onta Foreman ranks second in the country averaging 145.3 rushing yards per game. Foreman has rushed for 436 yards in the three games he has played.
• At quarterback, the Longhorns are getting strong play from both freshman Shane Buechele and senior Tyrone Swoopes. The duo has combined for 14 total touchdowns through four games.
• Texas features a balanced attack at wide receiver, as six players have caught a touchdown pass, five players have either 13 or 14 receptions and six players have between 114 and 191 receiving yards.
• One key aspect for the Longhorns attack is the speed at which it operates. Texas has run 333 plays through four games for an average of 83.3 plays per game. With their average time of possession being 28:37, Texas is running a play every 20.6 seconds so far in 2016.
Longhorns Lighting Up The Scoreboard
• Texas has scored 165 (41.2 ppg) points through the first four games of the 2016 season.
• The Longhorns have eclipsed the 40-point total in three of their four games, with their season-low being 31 points in the loss at Oklahoma State.
• The last time Texas scored more than 30 points in each of their first four games was in 2012.
• The 2016 season marks just the 10th time in the program's 124-year history in which a Texas offense has scored 30-or-more points in each of the first four games of the season.
Foreman Moving Up UT's Rushing Lists
• Junior running back D'Onta Foreman became the 50th Longhorn all-time to surpass 1,000 career rushing yards in a week three loss at Cal.
• Foreman, who is second in the nation averaging 145.3 rushing yards per game, has totaled 436 yards in three games that he has played this season.
• After matching his career high with 157 yards at California, Foreman totaled 148 yards on 17 carries last week against Oklahoma State. He has scored five touchdowns this season and two in each of the last two games.
• A junior. Foreman has eclipsed 100 yards rushing in all three games he has played in this year and five consecutive games in which he has played. All seven of his 100-yard games in his career have come in his last nine games played.
• A native of Texas City, Texas, Foreman has played in just 20 career games with two career starts. He has 1,190 rushing yards to rank 41st in school history entering Saturday's game against Oklahoma.
• His 172 carries are 41 fewer than anybody in Texas' top 45 in all-time rushing and second-fewest among players with 1,000 career yards all-time. Additionally, Foreman's career average of 6.9 ypc would be the best in school history, surpassing Vince Young's 6.8 ypc average.
Swoopes Excelling In 18-Wheeler Package
• Since the installation of the 18-wheeler package last season against Oklahoma State, quarterback Tyrone Swoopes has shined for the Longhorns. Not counting last season's TCU game, Swoopes has totaled 87 rushes for 489 yards (5.62 ypc) and 17 rushing touchdowns. He has also added two more passing touchdowns out of the package.
• Swoopes has been nothing short of efficient out of the package, as 41-of-87 rushes (47.1%) have either gone for a first down or touchdown.
• In the last 13 games, Swoopes has had five multi-touchdown games on the ground alone, including three in the win against No. 10 Notre Dame and two last week against Oklahoma State.
• Since the installation of the 18-wheeler package last season against Oklahoma State, Swoopes has totaled 10 rushes for 59 yards and three touchdowns against the Cowboys.
• Additionally in that time, Swoopes has five games with 50-or-more rushing yards, including a career-high of 98 yards against Texas Tech last season. In that span, he has five games with four-or-more money rushes, which include first downs and touchdowns.
• Swoopes enters Saturday's game with 904 career rushing yards, good for sixth in school history among quarterbacks. He also has 22 rushing touchdowns in his career - third-most among QBs in school history.
• Following his week one performance against Notre Dame, Swoopes was named Big 12 Conference Co-Offensive Player of the Week.
Swoopes Goes Over 3,000 Career Passing Yards
• Senior quarterback Tyrone Swoopes became just the 13th player in school history to eclipse the 3,000 career passing yards mark when he completed 4-of-6 passes for 65 yards in week three against Cal. Swoopes has now passed for 3,038 yards in his career.
• Additionally, he is just 96 rushing yards shy of 1,000 career yards. Swoopes could join Colt McCoy and Vince Young as the only three quarterbacks in school history to pass for 3,000 yards and rush for at least 1,000 in a career.
Buechele Making History Early At Texas
• Shane Buechele (Arlington, Texas) became the first true freshman quarterback at Texas to ever start the first two games of his career. He was just the second true freshman QB in school history to start the season opener, joining Bobby Layne in 1944. He has started all four games this season.
• Through four games, Buechele has made his mark among freshman quarterbacks in Texas football history. He has completed 78-of-119 passes (65.5 %) for 959 yards and eight touchdowns. His eight touchdowns are a school record among true freshmen QBs.
• Buechele is closing in on 1,000 yards passing this season entering Saturday's matchup with the Sooners. David Ash (2011) is the only true freshman QB in school history with a 1,000-yard passing season. Ash had 1,079 passing yards that season. In total, just nine freshmen have had 1,000-yard seasons at UT.
• In the season-opening win against No. 10 Notre Dame, Buechele was 16-of-26 for a true freshman-record 280 yards passing. Against UTEP, he passed for a true freshman-record four touchdowns.
• His two victories as a true freshman quarterback are tied for third all-time at Texas, while his four starts are tied for third among true freshmen. Bobby Layne (1944) owns the record for both wins (5) and starts (8) as a true freshman QB at Texas.
• Buechele went over 200 yards passing in each of his first two games and has done so three times so far. Only one other true freshman quarterback has had a 200 yard passing game in the 124-year history of Texas Football, as Rick McIvor did so against Baylor in 1979.
Red River Showdown Extra Special For QB Shane Buechele
• QB Shane Buechele graduated from Arlington Lamar High School in Texas, but grew up in a family full of Sooners.
• Buechele's older brother Garrett attended Oklahoma and played baseball for the Sooners. Jordan, his older sister, graduated from Oklahoma last May, while his other sister, Amber, is now a junior at OU.
• Saturday's matchup between the Longhorns and Sooners will be the youngest Buechele's first taste of the Red River Showdown on the field.
Longhorns Running Backs Make History Against Oklahoma State
• Junior D'Onta Foreman and sophomore Chris Warren III both surpassed 100 yards rushing in Saturday's setback at Oklahoma State. Foreman had 148 yards on 17 rushing attempts, while Warren had 106 yards on 10 carries.
• Saturday's game marked the second consecutive game in which two Longhorns had gone over 100 yards rushing in the same contest. Foreman had 157 yards against California while Warren had 118.
• It was the third time in school history that Texas had had two 100-yard rushers in back-to-back games, while it was just the second time in school history that both players to accomplish the feat were running backs. In 2004, QB Vince Young teamed up with RB Cedric Benson to go over 100 yards rushing in consecutive games against Oklahoma State and Kansas. In 1970, RB Steve Worster and RB Jim Bertelsen did so against SMU and Rice.
Texas Running Backs Leading Big 12 Conference
• D'Onta Foreman enters Saturday's game leading the Big 12 Conference with 145.3 yards per game on the ground. Chris Warren sits second averaging 91.5 yards per game.
• The duo has teamed up to register five 100-yard performances in just four games this season.
• Foreman has 100 yards-or-more in all three games in which he has played this season. He has now gone over 100 yards in five straight and seven of the last nine games he has played in.
• Warren has gone over 100 yards rushing in back-to-back games. He has accomplished that mark four times in his career, all coming in the last six games in which he has played.
• Foreman enters Saturday's game with 436 yards and five touchdowns this season. For his career, he has totaled 1,190 rushing yards and 10 TDs on the ground.
• Through four games this season, Warren has 366 yards on the ground and three scores. He has totaled 836 yards in his career and seven touchdowns.
Freshmen Making An Impact Again In 2016
• A total of 15 true freshmen have made their debuts in the burnt orange and white during the first four games of the season. Ten true freshman debuted in the season opener against Notre Dame, four saw action for the first time against UTEP and one more against Oklahoma State.
• So far, QB Shane Buechele and C Zach Shackelford have started all four games, while both S Brandon Jones and FOX Malcolm Roach made their first career starts against the Cowboys. • Other Longhorns to debut thus far are: DL D'Andre Christmas, OL Jean Delance, WR Devin Duvernay, DL Jordan Elliott, LB Erick Fowler, WR Lil'Jordan Humphrey, WR Collin Johnson, LB Jeffrey McCulloch, OL Denzel Okafor, RB Kyle Porter and DT Gerald Wilbon.
• After playing 17 true freshmen while starting a school-record 10 a season ago, Texas has played 15 with four making starts already in 2016.
Beck Scores First Career Touchdown
• In his 29th career game played, tight end Andrew Beck broke free over the middle on Saturday for his first career touchdown.
• The 39-yard reception was the longest of his career.
• Beck now has nine career receptions for 116 yards.
• His catch on Saturday not only was his first of the season, but it was the first reception of the season by a Longhorn tight end.
First Time Starters, First Time Players
• Besides true freshmen, 11 players have made their first career starts so far: RG Alex Anderson (UTEP), CB Sheroid Evans (ND), RB D'Onta Foreman(ND), RT Brandon Hodges (ND), RG Jake McMillon (Oklahoma State), DT Chris Nelson (ND), WR Jake Oliver (Oklahoma State), DE Charles Omenihu(ND), LT Elijah Rodriguez (UTEP), SS Kevin Vaccaro (UTEP) and WR Jacorey Warrick (ND).
• An additional 11 players have made their first career appearance: K Mitchell Becker (ND), K Trent Domingue (ND), OL Garrett Graf (UTEP), DS Jak Holbrook (ND), RB Tristian Houston (UTEP), DL Alex Mercado (UTEP), DL Patrick Ojeaga (UTEP), OL Garrett Thomas (UTEP), LB Cameron Townsend(UTEP), LB Johnny Tseng (UTEP) and TE Michael Wilson (ND).
Heard Of Him Before
• Texas sophomore receiver Jerrod Heard made the most of his 21st birthday in a week two win over UTEP, catching six passes for 46 yards and two touchdowns. The two touchdown receptions were the first of his career, in just his second career game at receiver.
• Heard's two receiving touchdowns against UTEP marked the Longhorns' first multi-touchdown receiving game by a single player since John Harris caught two versus Oklahoma in 2014. Since the beginning of the 2010 season, a span of 79 games, Heard's effort was just the seventh multi-touchdown receiving game.
• Since the 1980 season, just seven Longhorns have thrown a touchdown pass, caught a touchdown and rushed for a touchdown in their career.
• Heard, who made his first career start at wide receiver last week at Oklahoma State, is tied for the team lead with 14 receptions this season. He has 166 yards and is also tied for the team lead with two touchdowns.
Burt Blazing On The Field And Track
• Sophomore wide receiver John Burt had a standout freshman season on both the football field for Coach Charlie Strong and on the track for Coach Mario Sategna.
• A native of Tallahassee, Fla., Burt had six catches for 111 yards, including a touchdown reception of 72 yards in the win over No. 10 Notre Dame. His six receptions were a new career-high.
• He leads the Longhorns in receiving yards through four games in 2016, totaling 191 yards on 14 catches.
• Last season, Burt was Texas' leading receiver catching 28 passes for 457 yards and two touchdowns. He started all 12 games.
• On the track, Burt finished second in the 110m Hurdles at the Big 12 Championships and qualified for the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Ore.
• Burt was one of five who also play football at their respective FBS schools to qualify for the NCAA Championships. He was one of just two freshmen to qualify in the 24-person field.
• Burt was named the 12th-fastest player in college football as part of the NFL.com "16 for '16" series.
Foreman Brothers Are Formidable
• As if one Foreman brother wasn't enough for defenses, the opposition has to figure out how to defend WR Armanti Foreman each week in addition to running back D'Onta.
• Twin brothers, both started the season opener against Notre Dame. They each scored a touchdown in the win versus the Fighting Irish.
• Armanti has started all four games at outside wide receiver for the Longhorns so far in 2016. He now has racked up 10 career starts. Thus far, he has caught 13 passes for 139 yards and a touchdown.
Horns Hosting A Block Party In 2016
• So far in 2016, Longhorns' special teams have come up with four blocked kicks (two punts, one field goal, one PAT). Texas did not have a blocked kick in each of Charlie Strong's first two seasons and had just two total since the beginning of the 2013 season.
• Against Oklahoma State last week, Poona Ford blocked a Cowboys' PAT in the third quarter. It was Texas' first blocked PAT since the 2013 season against Ole Miss, a span of 38 games.
• True freshman Brandon Jones blocked a punt in back-to-back games against UTEP and California. He was the first Longhorn since Mykkele Thompson in 2012 to block a punt in consecutive games and only the fourth player at Texas since blocked kicks became an official stat in 1975.
• Jones' punt block against UTEP was the first blocked punt for Texas since Carrington Byndom did so vs. Texas Tech on Nov. 3, 2012.
• Jones is just the 12th player in school history to block multiple punts in the same season. The school record is four, owned by Aaron Williams (2008), Michael Griffin (2005) and Terrol Dillon (1999).
• Both punt blocks have led to points, as the block against UTEP led to a FG while against Cal it resulted in a safety.
• Junior Naashon Hughes blocked a Notre Dame field goal late in the third quarter of that game, which proved to be huge as the Fighting Irish attempted to mount a comeback. The Longhorns eventually won in double-overtime, 50-47. For Texas, Hughes' field goal block was the first in the last 30 games. Jackson Jeffcoat was the last to block a field goal when he did so against Kansas on Nov. 2, 2013.
Dickson A Threat From Down Under
• Sydney, Australia native Michael Dickson has turned into a major threat for the Longhorns early in his sophomore season. He enters the Red River Showdown against Oklahoma ranked third in the nation and first in the Big 12 Conference averaging 49.1 yards per punt.
• Dickson has punted 20 times in four games for a total of 982 yards. 11 of Dickson's 20 punts have been more than 50 yards while eight have been downed inside the 20.
• In total, only six of Dickson's 20 punts have been returned, as opponents are averaging just 8.8 yards per return.
• As a team, Texas is first in the Big 12 and fifth nationally with a 44.45 net punting average.
• Dickson punted six times for an average of 55.0 yards per punt in the season-opening victory over Notre Dame, playing a crucial role in flipping the field throughout. He set a new career long with a punt of 64 yards, and also a new career high and school record with his 55.0 yards per punt average. His five punts of more than 50 yards were also a new career high.
• Against UTEP, he punted five times for an average of 50.4 yards per punt (51.8 net average). Three of his five attempts were 50 yards-or-better, with a long of 57 yards on the night. Two punts were downed inside the UTEP 20, including one at the 1-yard line.
• Against Oklahoma State, Dickson punted five times for an average of 45.2 yards per punt. He also rushed for six yards on a fake punt, rolling out to his right and cutting up field to gain a first down.
Longhorns Defense Bringing The Pressure
• The Longhorns have had success in 2016 when bringing defensive pressure and getting into the backfield.
• Texas ranks first in the Big 12 Conference and 15th in the nation with their 14 sacks, an average of 3.50 per game.
• UT also ranks highly - entering the week fourth in the conference and 27th nationally - in tackles for loss, averaging 7.5 per game.
• When the Longhorns have been able to get the opposition into tough situations, they are having defensive success. Texas has forced 18 three-and-outs this season through four games.
Enc'Roach'ing On The Quarterback
• True freshman Malcolm Roach picked up his first career start last week at Oklahoma State, totaling three tackles in the game. He now has 10 tackles through four games to begin his career.
• Roach registered a sack against both UTEP and California. His two sacks are just one shy of moving him into a tie for 10th all-time for single-season sacks among freshmen at UT.
Wheeler Just Getting Started
• In just his fifth career start, sophomore linebacker Anthony Wheeler totaled a career-high 11 tackles at California. It was the Longhorns' first double-digit tackle performance of the season.
• Wheeler, who has started all four games so far this season, leads the team with 31 tackles. He has also added a tackle for loss and a pass breakup on the year.
Hager Wreaking Havoc, Too
• Sophomore Breckyn Hager has wreaked havoc on opposing defenses over the last few weeks, totaling 18 tackles, three tackles for loss and two sacks in the last three games.
• He registered a team-high eight tackles in a win at UTEP. He added his first career sack in that game. Against California, Hager once again found himself in the backfield multiple times, registering his second sack of the season.
• Hager is tied with Jason Hall, Charles Omenihu, Malcolm Roach and Kevin Vaccaro for the team lead with two sacks. His 3.5 tackles for loss leads the Longhorns through four games.
Hall Has A Big Game At Oklahoma State
• Safety Jason Hall had a big game against Oklahoma State, coming off the bench for the first time this season. Hall led the Longhorns with eight tackles (seven solo) and got to the quarterback for two sacks.
• He is now tied for the team lead with two sacks and has totaled 19 tackles to go along with a pass breakup this season.
Longhorns Face Challenging 2016 Schedule
• The 12-game 2016 slate features six games at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium, while the Longhorns will play five road games and the annual Red River Showdown in Dallas against Oklahoma.
• The Longhorns' 2016 opponents combined for a record of 89-64 (.582) in 2015, and through the first five weeks of the 2016 season, Texas opponents are 30-25 (.555).
• The Longhorns are in the midst of a stretch where they play three straight games away from home and do not play a home game for 35 calendar days.
(Original source - TexasSports.com)