Red River Rivalry Takes A Hit With UT Loss

In a perfect world, the No. 8 Sooners and Texas would be entering this Saturday's Red River Rivalry game with undefeated records and both teams being ranked in the top 10.

But because of UCLA, that won't be the case this time around. The Bruins' 34-12 victory in Austin this past weekend dropped the Longhorns out of the top 10 and all the way down to No. 21.

A lot of Sooner fans were ecstatic when they saw the final score to the Texas-UCLA game flash across the bottom of their television screens, but the loss takes away a little bit of the thunder that should have come with this weekend's matchup. "Boomer Sooner" chants echoed on Campus Corner from time to time when Sportscenter or whichever recap show was on the tube showed the game highlights.

Needless to say, the Longhorns' loss and OU's 31-29 victory over Cincinnati to improve to 4-0 gave Sooner Nation some much needed confidence going into the two teams' most anticipated matchup of each season.

But, the lack of two undefeated and top-10 teams in this year's Red River Rivalry takes away some of the game's marquee. Of course the game will be highly publicized and may be the highlight of each team's seasons, but the matchup always has better electricity when both teams are still in serious national title contention.

Just look back at the difference in the past two games.

Two years ago, the Sooners and Longhorns were undefeated and ranked No. 1 and No. 5, respectively, and the game was advertized as the game to not only decide the Big 12 title but also which Big 12 team would be represented in the national championship game.

And the game did not disappoint. The Longhorns won a 45-35 back-and-forth, exciting battle that was later used as an arguing point in the three-way-tie controversy in the Big 12 South.

Then, last year, the Sooners entered the game with two losses and the most significant pregame news for OU was how former OU quarterback Sam Bradford would do after having one game under his belt since returning from his first shoulder injury. As everyone remembers, Bradford did not last two series and the Longhorns won a 16-13 defensive struggle en route to a national title appearance.

Granted there is still a lot on the line in this year's matchup, and, after all, this is OU-Texas, the game will still be a battle on the field, in the stands, at the Texas State Fair and in the media. So, not all is lost by one team not being undefeated, but the buildup and intensity would be slightly higher if this was a top-10 affair.

Plus, while the Sooners would love to have a victory over Texas despite either teams' records or rankings, you know they would love it more if they were the ones to hand the Longhorns their first loss and possibly end their Big 12 and national title hopes.

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