AUSTIN (KXAN) — It was Casey Thompson’s time as starting quarterback for the Texas Longhorns, but the Texas running backs stole the show Saturday night at Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium.
Texas gashed Rice’s defense for 427 rushing yards as five Longhorns running backs ran up and down the field on the Owls for a 58-0 win. Bijan Robinson led the day, running for 127 yards and three touchdowns. Robinson also joined Texas’ 1,000-yard rushing club on a five-yard plunge in the third quarter. He’s the fastest to reach the mark since Jamaal Charles.
Head coach Steve Sarkisian handed Thompson the keys to the offense earlier this week after Texas’ 40-21 loss at Arkansas. Thompson played well when he needed to Saturday night.
He finished the night with 15 completions for 164 yards and two touchdowns. He did throw an interception as he was hit while attempting to unleash a deep ball. The ball floated right into the hands of an Owls defensive back.
Texas closed out the non-conference portion of the schedule against Rice. The Longhorns will host Texas Tech next Saturday at 11 a.m. for the Big 12 opener.
Texas has won 15 straight against Rice and owns a 74-21-1 overall series record against the Owls. The Longhorns defeated Rice 48-13 in 2019 at Houston’s NRG Stadium.
Below is a live blog with a full recap of the Longhorns’ win over Rice.
Longhorns Live Blog
RUNNING WILD: Texas has rushed for 427 yards against Rice. Four running backs scored touchdowns — Bijan Robinson, Roschon Johnson, Keilan Robinson and Jonathon Brooks.
In the fourth quarter, reserve running back Gabriel Watson picked up yardage for the Longhorns.
TD CLUB: Welcome to the touchdown club, Jonathon Brooks. The freshman from Hallettsville scores his first touchdown as a Longhorn on a 17-yard rush late in the third quarter.
Texas has piled up 358 rushing yards in three quarters.
1,000 YARDS: Sophomore Bijan Robinson joined the 1,000 yard club at Texas with a 5-yard run in the third quarter. He’s the fastest to reach 1,000 yards at Texas since Jamaal Charles.
C’MON KEILAN: The Alabama transfer Keilan Robinson showed off some serious speed on a 65-yard rushing touchdown on Texas’ first offensive series of the second half.
That’s the third 60-yard rush of the game for the Longhorns tailbacks. Johnson’s 72-yard score, Robinson’s 62-yard score and Keilan Robinson’s 65-yard score.
SCORE: Texas leads 51-0
FIRST TD CATCH: Freshman Xavier Worthy is on the board in his Longhorn career with a 13-yard touchdown. It’s the California native’s first college touchdown. Thompson’s second passing touchdown of the night.
The drive started after Jerrin Thompson forced a fumble, getting his head right on the ball to spring it loose. Josh Thompson recovered for the Longhorns’ short field.
SCORE: Texas leads 44-0
THOMPSON ON THE BOARD: Casey Thompson throws his first passing touchdown of the night, hitting Jared Wiley for a 20-yard touchdown. Wiley is fresh off the injury report and gets into the mix for a score.
SCORE: Texas leads 37-0
BIJAN PT. 3: As in three touchdowns for the Longhorns sophomore. This one goes for 62 yards and the Longhorns fourth touchdown of the night. Robinson has 114 yards on 11 carries and three scores.
SCORE: Texas leads 30-0
BIJAN PT. 2: Bijan Robinson capped off an efficient Texas scoring drive with an 8-yard touchdown run. His second of the game and fourth of the season.
SCORE: Texas leads 23-0
SAFETY DANCE: The Texas Longhorns running backs are doing all of the damage on the scoreboard. On a Rice punt, Keilan Robinson came off the edge cleanly to block the kick. The ball ricocheted 25 yards out of the back of the end zone for a safety.
SCORE: Texas leads 16-0
ROSCHON JOHNSON: The Longhorns running back to the house for a 72-yard touchdown. Johnson took the direct snap, hitting a huge hole on the right side to break free.
SCORE: Texas leads 14-0
DEFENSIVE STAND: Rice moved the ball down the field on the Texas defense immediately after the turnover until the Owls reached the red zone. The Longhorns defense held at the 6-yard line and Rice MISSED the field goal.
TEXAS O-LINE ISSUES: Thompson tried to air it deep, but was hit on the throw ending the Longhorns’ second possession after one play. Rice was able to easily intercept the pass for Thompson’s first turnover.
The offensive line wasn’t able to give Thompson enough time to let the play develop.
THOMPSON’S FIRST SERIES: Sarkisian started Thompson with an easy first completion. A pitch pass to Xavier Worthy behind the line of scrimmage. Thompson was tested, completing a 31-yard pass to Worthy to convert on fourth down.
Bijan Robinson scored his third touchdown of the season on a 6-yard run for the Longhorns lead. Robinson had four carries for 27 yards on the first drive. Worthy had three grabs for 37 yards.
SCORE: Texas leads 7-0
Kickoff: Rice won the coin toss and deferred their option to the second half. The Longhorns will start the game on offense.
Pregame: Texas head coach Steve Sarkisian made his weekly stroll around the field about two hours before kickoff against Rice.