Typically, when you come into the Red River Shootout with any doubt, it ends like most marriages - badly.
And it's probably fair to say Texas has a doubt or two about its offense considering the Horns haven't scored a point in the third quarter of the last three games.
Last year, Texas players got fed up with 55-17 and 63-21 beatdowns by the Sooners and stunned an OU team playing without nose tackle Jordan Phillips by running the ball 60 times for 255 yards.
Quandre Diggs said this week he doesn't think there are enough "dogs" playing for Texas. Jordan Hicks said he thinks some of his teammates are playing as if they are waiting for something bad to happen.
Tyrone Swoopes said this week he was rattled by some early hits he took against Baylor and also that he struggled to read what BU's defense was doing even though the Bears were giving him the same look over and over.
So as it pertains to my score prediction - are you sitting down? - I woke up Wednesday with the feeling that the defense would take matters into its own hands - completely.
Quandre Diggs scores a TD on a scoop-and-score after blitzing Trevor Knight and jarring the ball loose.
And Duke Thomas returns an INT for a touchdown. And the UT defense makes Knight's life as miserable as much as the OU defense is probably going to make Swoopes' life miserable.
(Before the season, I called Trey Holtz the Randy McEachern of this year's team. No chance we see him tomorrow, right? )
Texas 14, OU 13
To me this game is all about who punches who first in the mouth.
One huge reason the Longhorns were able to pull off the upset last season in this game was because they were, as Quandre Diggs said, more prepared for that game than any game ever.
Texas will be well prepared and endure an early deep score from Oklahoma to keep the game tight for the first half. But the Longhorns, again, will simply not be able to keep up on the scoreboard.
It just won’t be enough this time around.
Actually, on second thought, let’s switch this up. Give me the Longhorns. Screw it.
Something just clicked in me that said the Longhorns will get to Trevor Knight enough to make him turn the ball over like he is accustomed to doing.
I think Jordan Hicks and Steve Edmond will again lead Texas in tackles and Jason Hall makes his presence felt, not with his big hits, but with his ability to cut down on angles and deflect Knight’s deep passes to Sterling Shepard.
Texas will try a little razzle-dazzle, and at least one of those plays will work for a big play that gets the Longhorns into the red zone.
More misdirections, more read-option, more speed sweeps and a big punt return from Jaxon Shipley will spark Texas’ offense.
Texas 24, Oklahoma 17
Things have not gone the way Charlie Strong has planned.
The coaching staff has dealt with suspensions they have dealt with injuries and they have dealt with players not living up to expectations in the early part of this season.
Having said all that, it's time for Texas as a team to man up. We have seen them stay in games throughout the season but a miscue here in there has cost them dearly.
The team is hungry and in desperate need of a win and what better way to turn things around then on Saturday against Oklahoma.
I expect texts to come out fast and furious be more physical and execute the game plan. The key will be to stay away from turnovers and get after the Oklahoma quarterback. I believe Texas wins this game.
Texas 28, Oklahoma 23
NICK CASTILLO (HD Super Intern)
Here we are at OU weekend once again with the same feelings as last year – unsure and concerned at what might happen in the Cotton Bowl.
The Red River Showdown, Red River Shootout, or my personal favorite “The State Fair Street Fight (whichever you prefer to call this game),” is about mental fortitude. I think the Texas defense has that fortitude that will keep them in the game as it has done all season.
But I’m concerned about the offense as I question sophomore quarterback Tyrone Swoopes’ confidence.
The offense will need to score at least 21 points.
The Longhorns will need a defensive and special teams score in order to upset the Sooners. Texas could, for the second year in a row, shock the world but I just don’t see it this year.
Oklahoma 21, Texas 10