Backup Helps Texas Beat Baylor : College football: After 21-13 victory, Longhorns can win SWC title by beating Texas A&M;.
The No. 9-ranked Texas Longhorns have helped set up a fitting finale to the Southwest Conference.
After a 21-13 victory over Baylor on Thursday night, Texas, 9-1-1 overall and 6-0 in the SWC, will face rival Texas A&M; next week with the chance to win the league title outright for the first time since 1990 and gain a berth in either the Orange or Sugar bowls.
Texas A&M; (7-2, 4-1), which must beat Texas Christian on Saturday to play the Longhorns for a share of the league title, and Texas are the winningest programs in the 81-year history of the SWC, which will disband after this season.
With redshirt freshman Richard Walton leading a slow-starting offense in place of injured quarterback James Brown, Texas rode its defense to victory against Baylor (7-4, 5-2), clinching at least a share of the SWC title.
“We have said all along we wanted to be playing on Dec. 2 [against A&M;] for the championship,” Texas Coach John Mackovic said. “It should be a real classic against a great team.”
Walton opened the game three for nine and, after the first six possessions, the Longhorns had one yard of offense and no first downs.
But a strong defensive effort by Texas gave Walton enough time to find his footing. He hooked up with tight end Pat Fitzgerald, from Agoura High and L.A. Valley College, on a 70-yard touchdown pass play with 4:39 left before halftime. The play accounted for most of Texas’ 103 first-half yards.
Shon Mitchell put Texas up, 14-0, with 11:24 left in the third quarter when he ran 27 yards for a touchdown.
Mitchell finished with 20 carries for 106 yards, giving the junior college transfer 1,010 yards for the season. He is the first 1,000-yard rusher for Texas since Eric Metcalf ran for 1,161 in 1987.
Wane McGarity made it 21-0 with a one-yard touchdown run with 9:21 to play.
Baylor finally scored on a 25-yard run by Anthony Hodge with 8:42 left in the game. The Bears added a touchdown on the game’s final play as Jeff Watson passed 13 yards to Dustin Dennard in the left corner of the end zone. The two-point conversion run failed.
Watson, who won the starting job over freshman Jermaine Alfred, finished 16 for 27 for 228 yards without an interception.
“Without James Brown, they are not the same team, but they still have a lot of weapons,” Baylor Coach Chuck Reedy said.