In a surprising turn of events, the Texas Longhorns emerged victorious in their matchup against the Alabama Crimson Tide, a team ranked three spots higher than them. Despite being considered underdogs, the 11th-ranked Longhorns managed to secure a 34-24 win in an action-packed game. The first half of the game saw a relatively low scoring affair, with only 19 total points on the board. However, the second half provided a stark contrast, as both teams came alive and combined for 39 points.
The Crimson Tide started the second half by narrowing the deficit to four points with a field goal. In response, the Longhorns missed their own field goal attempt, giving Alabama a chance to seize momentum. On a critical 2nd and 11 play late in the third quarter, Jalen Milroe connected with Jermaine Burton for a 49-yard touchdown pass, giving Alabama a 16-13 lead. The Longhorns quickly countered, securing a massive 50-yard gain followed by a touchdown pass from Quinn Ewers to Adonai Mitchell, propelling them to a four-point lead.
Alabama’s hopes of a comeback were crushed when Milroe threw an interception on their next drive, which was returned by Jerrin Thompson to the five-yard line. Running back Jonathan Brooks capitalized on this opportunity, rushing into the end zone and extending Texas’ lead to 27-16. The Tide didn’t go down without a fight, as Amari Niblack managed a 39-yard catch-and-run for a touchdown, followed by a successful two-point conversion. However, the Longhorns quickly retaliated with another long touchdown pass to Mitchell, reclaiming a 10-point advantage.
With just over seven minutes remaining, the Longhorns’ defense stepped up, forcing a three-and-out and regaining possession. They effectively ran out the clock, opting for nine consecutive rushing plays. On a crucial 4th and 3, Texas capitalized on a penalty, drawing Alabama offsides and securing a first down that allowed them to kneel out the remaining time. Texas outscored Alabama 21-8 in the fourth quarter, ultimately sealing their impressive victory.
Quinn Ewers delivered an exceptional performance, completing 24 of his 38 passes for 349 yards and three touchdowns. Ja’Tavion Sanders emerged as a standout player for the Longhorns, recording 114 receiving yards, while Xavier Worthy contributed to the team’s success with five catches for 75 yards and a touchdown. It’s worth noting that this intense rivalry will only intensify next year when the two schools become conference rivals as Texas joins the SEC.
Looking ahead, the Longhorns will face Wyoming in their upcoming game, hoping to build upon the momentum gained from their triumph over Alabama. Meanwhile, the Crimson Tide will travel to South Florida to face their next challengers. Texas’ victory has undoubtedly left an indelible mark and raised hopes that the team may finally be making a comeback on the national stage.