College Station, Texas (AP) — Roddrick Muckelroy looked too tired to walk, let alone lift his arm and sing "The Eyes of Texas."
Texas linebacker and his teammates had barely survived their wildest
game of the season, a 49-39 win over rival Texas A&M that kept the
Longhorns' national title hopes alive and gave Colt McCoy a huge
And it exhausted a defense that had looked
dominant this season until Aggie quarterback Jerrod Johnson nearly
matched McCoy blow-for-blow and left the Longhorns gasping on the field.
But Muckleroy managed to mumble a few words to the song and smiled to a fan who patted him on the shoulder.
Sorry, TCU and Cincinnati. You'll have to wait for someone else to spring an upset.
"Now we got to go get Nebraska," McCoy said, who unlike his teammate, was all smiles after one of the best games of his career.
The Longhorns (12-0) have nine days to get ready for the Big 12 championship game.
44th career victory makes him 2-2 against a bitter rival and came with
304 yards passing with four touchdowns, 175 yards rushing and a 65-yard
TD run in a Heisman-like performance.
"I don't get to vote for
the Heisman, but if anyone has a better Heisman moment than that, I'd
like to see it," Texas coach Mack Brown said.
Johnson nearly matched McCoy every step of the way, passing for 342 yards and four touchdowns and rushing for 97 yards.
Longhorns didn't put the game away until Marquise Goodwin's 95-yard
kickoff return with seven minutes left gave them a 10-point lead. Texas
A&M kicker Randy Bullock missed a chip shot field goal with 3:52 to
"We should have won," Texas A&M defensive back Jordan Pugh said.
The Aggies could have. They gouged what had been a dominant defense for 532 yards while Johnson ran them ragged.
What A&M couldn't do was hold a lead after they stunned Texas with a quick touchdown.
Johnson connected with Jeff Fuller on a 70-yard touchdown pass the
third play of the game, Texas quickly rallied to a 14-7 lead. McCoy
ripped off the long touchdown run that evoked memories of Vince Young
in Texas' 2005 national championship season.
"I don't know if I looked slow," McCoy said. "I felt slow."
more Johnson touchdown passes pulled Texas A&M back to a 21-all tie
at halftime. Texas finally got a cushion in the third. Tre' Newton's
7-yard scoring run put Texas up 35-21 and the Longhorns seemed the have
the game in control.
Johnson brought the Aggies roaring back, running and passing his way through the Texas defense at will.
"Our production on offense was almost perfect," Johnson said.
Bullock made a field goal, Christine Michael's 16-yard touchdown cut
the Texas lead to 35-32. After McCoy's fourth touchdown pass, Johnson
matched him with a 20-yarder to Fuller, and the Aggies were rolling
Then Goodwin took the ensuing kickoff at the 5,
split through a seam of blockers and found himself all alone with
Bullock at midfield.
"I was thinking 'You better score. You
better not get tackled by the kicker,'" Goodwin said. "Once I broke
off, it was daylight."
The touchdown put Texas back up by 10. After that, the defense finally made a stand inside the Texas 10.
said he expected the fight. Texas was a heavy favorite in 2005 when
they escaped College Station with a 40-29 win before going to win the
Big 12 title and the Rose Bowl.
When A&M hit the big
touchdown on the third play, a crowd expecting a Texas rout suddenly
had hope and stayed loud all night.
"These guys are tough, especially in this place," McCoy said. "My ears are still ringing."
and the Texas defense may have been exhausted, but McCoy left the field
with a spontaneous "Yeah baby! Woo!" before pumping his fist and
pointing No. 1 to a group of Texas fans.
"Colt McCoy was unbelievable," Brown said. "I don't remember any performance like that, period."