Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Texas edges Ohio State

Texas' Quan Cosby dives into the end zone for the winning touchdown against Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl on Monday in Glendale, Ariz. Texas won, 24-21.

Texas' Quan Cosby dives into the end zone for the winning touchdown against Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl on Monday in Glendale, Ariz. Texas won, 24-21.



Texas quarterback Colt McCoy celebrates as he scores against Ohio State during the third quarter of the Fiesta Bowl on Monday in Glendale, Ariz.

Texas-sized upset in Glendale

The Longhorns come from behind to upend Ohio State in the waning seconds of the Fiesta Bowl.

Glendale, Ariz. — Colt McCoy got the best of Ohio State this time.

The Texas quarterback was just a wide-eyed freshman playing his second college game in 2006 when No. 1 Ohio State and No. 2 Texas met in Austin and the Buckeyes waltzed out of town with a 24-7 victory that was a baptism of big hits.

That was then.

The savvy McCoy of 2009, the runner-up for the Heisman Trophy, is no comparison to the player of three years ago.

Dusting off the dirt after several big hits — and two illegal blows to the head — McCoy passed for 414 yards and two touchdowns, the second to Quan Cosby with 16 seconds to play, to carry third-ranked Texas to a 24-21 win over No. 10 Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl on Monday night.

McCoy finished with a school-record 41 completions and ran for Texas’ first touchdown in the Longhorns’ fifth straight bowl win.

“We are going to fight to the end,” McCoy said. “We proved that tonight.”

Three years ago, McCoy gnashed his teeth as he walked off the field and the Buckeyes celebrated in his home stadium. This time, he was high-fiving teammates and fans and hugging his coaches as a broad smile beamed across his face.

His gritty performance could make him the clear favorite to win the Heisman next season if 2008 winner Sam Bradford of Oklahoma decides to leave for the NFL.

“He played as well as any quarterback can possibly play, especially the last drive,” Texas coach Mack Brown. “I mean, to me, that’s a Heisman-type drive.”

McCoy was at his best in the third quarter and on the final drive.

With Texas (12-1) trailing 6-3, he scored the Longhorns’ first touchdown on a 14-yard run when he spun around Buckeyes cornerback Malcolm Jenkins. The defender had ducked his head and must have been surprised when McCoy easily danced around him to get into the end zone.

Texas’ second TD came when McCoy rolled to his right, spotted Jordan Shipley in the end zone and fired just as Cosby, who was running the other way, stepped in for the grab and the score.

The Buckeyes battered McCoy all game, sacking him twice and knocking him down numerous other times. Twice in the first half he took shots to the head by defensive lineman Thaddeus Gibson. On one sack, Gibson wrapped up McCoy with both arms, picked him up and slammed him down like a wet fish.

“He was very angry with me or something,” McCoy said. “That was the biggest, best defense we’ve played this year. They were coming after me all night long. I’ll be sore tomorrow.”

By the second half, McCoy had found his rhythm and Texas was on a roll.

After Ohio State (10-3) took a 21-17 lead on Terrelle Pryor’s touchdown catch late in the fourth, McCoy coolly drove the Longhorns to the winning touchdown.

Taking over at the Texas 22 with 1:58 to play, the Longhorns marched down the field in 11 plays with McCoy completing eight passes. None was bigger than a fourth-down toss to James Kirkendoll who got the first down by inches. The margin was so close that Ohio State challenged the spot of the ball because the Buckeyes believed they had stopped him short and won the game.

“We got a good spot,” McCoy said.

After one more completion, Texas had 16 seconds left and maybe time for three more plays when McCoy fired a dart to Cosby across the middle. The receiver slipped a tackle and dived into the end zone without a Buckeye defender within 10 yards.

“That dive was ’No one is going to stop me from getting in this end zone,”’ Cosby said.


Cody Stumma 11 years ago

I'm sorry, but Texas should of lost that game. The ref clearly screwed Ohio State out of a BCS win. That fourth down chain call was the most bogus call as I have seen as a few years (not since the Phantom Call back in 2003-4?).

Dyrk Dugan 11 years ago

Not much of a case made there. Texas barely beats the 2nd best team in the Big 10? and they think they deserve a shot at the national title? give me a break.OU really needs to win on would be for a 5-2 Big 12 record, 10 wins in two years...and would give the Big 12, the current holders of the national title in mens basketball and football. C'mon Sooners...let's end this debate!

kranny 11 years ago

A win is a win, and it was a good spot. Ohio State's O line got away with a horrendous amount of holding calls on the Texas D-ends and they played like a bunch of cheap shot thugs. Got to hand it to McCoy who kept his cool with blitzes in his face all night. 3-0 against the Big (we can't count to 11)10. Go Big 12.

KUPROUD 11 years ago

I agree 100% with Colt McCoy. They faced a defense much tougher than any in the Big 12 this year, right up there with USC and Florida. There were bad calls on both sides that made a difference all through the game, so I don't give too much credit to the late call deciding the game. Texas did what it had to do to win, and they should be in the mythical top eight team play-off scenario with OK, Florida, USC, Utah, and three other pick-ems.

justanotherfan 11 years ago

I don't like bowl games for two reasons.1) The game comes down to isolated matchups that coaches can produce in the month leading up to the game.2) You never know who will show up.Coaches can spend a month breaking down everything you have done all year and setting up their defense to stop it, rather than just coaching their team to play good football. In the month between the game, the players take a week to ten days off from football, their longest break other than the lag between spring practice and two a days. That's why bowl games occassionally are as sloppy as early season games. Sometimes one team will show up sharp, the other flat. Its hard to gauge teams when that happens. I think a playoff would be a truer reflection of who the best team is because the teams have to keep playing. Finish the regular season, advance to the playoffs, keep practicing and preparing and playing every week until the end of the year. That's how every other level of football is, and its not an accident that at those levels teams almost never come out flat or sloppy in the playoffs.

mdfraz 11 years ago

It looked to me like the spot was about where it should have been; in fact, live, it looked like the receiver got the ball even further than they gave him credit for. Obviously it couldn't have been such a horrendous call since they reviewed it and there wasn't enough evidence to respot the ball. In MOST games, complaints about the refs are overrated and the questionable calls usually even out in the end, or pretty close. I don't think the refs had much of an impact on this game. Big win for the Big 12 (and the first win for the vaunted South, anyone else notice that?), but not impressive enough by Texas to really merit them being #1 in the AP. They needed to be extremely impressive, in fact probably overwhelming, which they weren't. Honestly, unless either OU or UF just looks spectacular, I'm not sure I wouldn't have Utah as my #1 in the AP poll. I'm not much for the mid majors usually, but they beat Bama, TCU, BYU, Oregon St., and won in the Big House. Even with Meeeechigan being down this year, that's not easy.

JayViking 11 years ago

There was nothing wrong with the spot. Forward progress had him at the 39th 1/2 yard line.

rolo2383 11 years ago

This was a fairly uneventful game and Fox made it even worse. Did anyone else notice that Fox blocked out almost all the crowd noise? I barely heard any noise from the fans all game. That's one of the greatest things about games is the fan involvement. All I heard all night was the Ohio State band banging on the drums between each of their offensive plays. Fox sucks.

rcaltrider 11 years ago

He did get forward progress initially past the 40 but if you watch closely he fumbles the ball when he is whipped around and it hits the ground before coming right back into his arms. The spot the ball hits and where he recovers then negates the forward progress and the ball should be spotted there. That spot was behind the first down marker. The worst call however was the roughing the passer blow to the head where Gibson clearly hit Golden Boy McCoy below the shoulder pads and not in the head. That was a 3rd down play and would have forced a FG instead of giving them a 1st down which eventually led to a TD. Take 4 pts away and it would have been 21-13 (actually OSU wouldn't have gone for 2 on either TD so it would have been 23-13 and the game is over. The zebras handed that game to Texas. And was McCoy's family the only family of a player that was at the game? They didn't happen to show Pryor's family or anybody else's family but for some reason we had to see Golden Boy McCoys family after every other play!

kranny 11 years ago

rcaltrider, I guess everybody has their own perspective but I sure didn't see it going down that way on the spot of the ball. Also, even if the blow was below the shoulder pad area(which I agree) it should have been a rouging the passer call anyway which is an automatic first down so take your pick of penalties. OSU did not get screwed, they screwed themselves with poor play calling and a horrible defensive secondary. Just one more indication that the Big 10 needs to get with the times. More teams are running the spread and if the big 10 wants to vie for championships they need to get people who can defend the pass.

rcaltrider 11 years ago

kranny--no, it would not have been roughing the passer because it was not a late hit, he had just released the ball. OSU gave up a lot of passing yards because that is all that Texas does and they shut down the run. Texas got nothing over the top. OSU's problem has nothing to do with defense. They gave up far fewer points to Texas than anybody in the Big 12 did. OSU's defense is much better than anything in the Big 12. OSU's (and the Big 10's) problem is not getting with the times in terms of defense, it is in getting with the times on offense and aggressiveness in offensive play-calling. As far as getting people who can defend the pass, Malcolm Jenkins will be the first DB taken in the upcoming draft and probably in the top 5.

kranny 11 years ago

rcaltrider, I would say giving up over 400 yds passing and 41 completions is officially getting schooled. In football you take what the defense gives you and and OSU's D gave it up in the secondary. This was even after they decided to drop Laurenitis back into secondary with a nickleback also. OSU would have finished maybe 5th in the Big 12. Case closed.

rcaltrider 11 years ago

kranny--Case not closed. You really don't seem to know a whole lot about football so I will give you a break. As I said, OSU held the Texas offense in check much better than anybody in the Big 12 did. Texas got their yards and their completions but did not score with the regularity that they scored on every other team they played against this year. As I said, offensively OSU needs to update their play-calling and aggressiveness. But defensively they can play with anybody. They gave up 2 of their TDs in the 3rd quarter because the offense could not give the defense a rest because they got no first downs in the third quarter. You need to look a little deeper into things and understand the game a little more before you make observations that you don't know what you're talking about.

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