AUSTIN (KXAN) — The cannon will fire for the 117th battle between Texas and Oklahoma Saturday morning with both teams looking to lay claim to best team in the Big 12.
The two teams and its fanbases will be split along the 50-yard line of the Cotton Bowl. Each team will come out of the same tunnel, which provides a particularly unique experience for the players.
“Coming out of the tunnel, you literally just see one side their color and one side our color,” defensive lineman Keondre Coburn said. “It’s like if you’re on this side, that side is going to hate you and if you’re on that side, this side is going to hate you so, I mean, I’m glad the side I’m on, I’m happy about the side I’m on.”
Defensive lineman Moro Ojomo notes that it’s a happy feeling when he does cross over to the safe haven of the Texas side.
“When the boos turn to cheers, it’s just like, ‘Ah!’ It’s great crossing that 50,” Ojomo said.
Recent history in the Red River Showdown
Despite the Sooners’ dominant run in the Big 12 over recent years, the Texas-OU series has remained competitive and close. OU has more often come out as the winner.
The Sooners are 7-3 against the Longhorns in the Red River Showdown over the last decade — excluding the teams’ meeting in the Big 12 Championship in 2018.
Seven of the last eight meetings have been decided by eight points or less, with last year’s meeting going four overtimes before OU prevailed.
Texas’ last win against OU came in 2018 when Cameron Dicker kicked a game-winning field goal in the final minute for a 48-45 win.
“When you’re playing the team over recent history that has won the conference, well here’s an opportunity to see where are we at this point,” head coach Steve Sarkisian explained. “We look forward to the challenge.”
Family ties to Texas-OU rivalry
Family ties are usually involved when these two teams meet, and this year’s notable connections come courtesy of Longhorns quarterback Casey Thompson and linebacker Luke Brockermeyer.
Both players grew up going to the games and sitting on opposite sides. Brockermeyer, both his father and grandfather were Longhorns, cheered for Texas.
Thompson, who is from Oklahoma, rooted for the Sooners. Although Brockermeyer remained burnt orange through and through, Thompson converted when he committed to Texas in high school.
“Growing up a huge Texas fan and all of that, it was always my dream to come here,” Brockermeyer said. “I don’t know if I could see myself on the other side.”
Thompson’s father Charles quarterbacked the Sooners in the late 80s. Thompson says he’s learned plenty from his dad, of what to do, as well as what not to do.
“I’ll just turn on a full game and watch him from start to finish and I’ll literally like write down stuff or take videos and send it to him like, ‘hey, you missed this throw,’ (laughs),” Thompson said about his dad.
“It’s a dream come true for me to be a part of this tradition of great quarterbacks who have been able to play and start in this game, there have been a lot of great players that you know like I said who made their name in this game and I’m looking to do the same this week.”
The Longhorns are back in the Associated Press poll right in time for the showdown in the Cotton Bowl. No. 21 Texas will face No. 6 Oklahoma Saturday at 11 a.m. with ESPN’s College GameDay in attendance.
Red River Showdown forecast
Temperatures will start out enjoyable at kickoff before heating up in the second half of Saturday’s game. Winds are expected to come out of the south at 10 to 20 miles per hour.
How to watch Texas-OU Saturday
When: 11 a.m. Saturday
Where: Cotton Bowl at Fair Park (Dallas, Texas)
Radio: Longhorn Radio Network