ARLINGTON, Texas — Texas will exit the Big 12 in the same manner that it entered: As a champion.
Quinn Ewers threw for 452 yards and four touchdowns and No. 7 Texas stormed to a 49-21 win over No. 19 Oklahoma State in the Big 12 championship game on Saturday. The Big 12 championship is Texas’ fourth. The Longhorns won the league’s inaugural title in 1996 and were crowned again in 2005 and 2009.
Texas is leaving for the Southeastern Conference next season.
“I know it’s been a long time coming. Everybody’s been starving for this championship,” third-year Texas coach Steve Sarkisian said. “To get it in our final game in the Big 12, I hope everybody enjoys it as much as we do.”
At one point during the postgame presentation, Sarkisian waved both of his arms trying to quiet the jeers toward Yormark, who before the season when addressing a crowd of Texas Tech supporters publicly rooted against the Longhorns, who are going with Oklahoma to the SEC next season.
“It’s all good, it’s all good,” Yormark said with a smile.
“An incredible season by the Texas Longhorns. You guys with today’s dominating performance deserve a ticket to the CFP for sure,” the commissioner said, adding it was an honor to present the trophy to Sarkisian and his team.
The 28-point rout at AT&T Stadium also keeps Texas in contention for a spot in the College Football Playoffs. The Longhorns will find out if they will make the field Sunday when the CFP committee announces the participants for the Rose Bowl and Sugar Bowl-hosted semifinal games.
If Texas doesn’t make that cut, it will find out which New Year’s Six bowl it is heading to later in the day.
But Texas left little doubt as to who the best team in the conference was this season, and the Longhorns made that crystal clear before Nelly took the stage for Saturday’s halftime show. After forcing a three-and-out on Oklahoma State’s game-opening possession, Texas scored on its first four drives.
The Longhorns entered halftime with a 35-14 lead and 422 yards of offense. According to ESPN Stats & Info, Texas is the only Power Five team in the last 20 seasons to record 400 yards and 35 pts in either half of a conference title game.
The star of the first half was Ewers, the third-year quarterback who went 23-for-31 for 354 yards and four touchdowns. His touchdown passes were spread out among four teammates, one of which was Big 12 defensive player of the year T’Vondre Sweat on a trick play.
“We are very, very versatile. We have extreme depth and we can win at the line of scrimmage and we can win at the skill position spots,” Sarkisian said, when asked about stating his team’s case. “This is maybe a little bullish for me saying. But we’ll play anybody in the country. We’ll find out if we’re good enough.”
Entering the game, the Big 12 record for passing yards in the Big 12 championship game was Sam Bradford’s 384 in 2008. Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield and Kansas State’s Ell Roberson had been the only other quarterbacks to throw four touchdown passes in this conference contest.
Ewers claimed the passing yardage record in the second half.
Despite having outscored its opponents by a 200-122 margin in the third and fourth quarters of its previous games this season, Oklahoma State was unable to cut into the 21-point deficit that it entered halftime with. Texas senior Keilan Robinson ran for two touchdowns in the second half to secure the most-lopsided score in a Big 12 Championship Game since 2008.