No. 10 Notre Dame was the latest Top 10 team – joining Oklahoma and LSU – to lose on the first week of the college football season.
Texas backup quarterback Tyrone Swoopes scored the go-ahead touchdown in the second overtime to give Texas a wild 50-47 home victory Sunday night.
Freshman Shane Buechele got the start over Swoopes, but the two-quarterback system worked wonders and had the Irish defense guessing all night. Swoopes rushed for two touchdowns and even ran over several defenders in the process.
Buechele, became the first freshman quarterback to start for the Longhorns in a season opener since Bobby Layne did it in 1944. The right handed quarterback threw the ball with plenty of zip as he finished the game with 280 passing and two touchdowns.
Notre Dame was also using a two-quarterback system before Irish quarterback DeShone Kizer rallied the team from a 31-17 deficit in the third quarter. Kizer finished the game with 215 passing yards and five touchdowns.
The game was a complete roller coaster ride as both teams went back and forth all night long.
And for a brief moment, it looked like Texas had the game won after a 19-yard touchdown run gave the Longhorns a 37-35 lead with just over three minutes left in the game. But on the ensuing extra point, the unthinkable happened as the Irish blocked the point after and ran it back for two points to tie the game at 37.
After both teams traded touchdowns in the first overtime, the Longhorn defense managed to hold the high-flying Irish offense to a field goal in the second overtime to set up the game-winning drive.
With the ball inside the red zone, Swoops entered the game for Buechele and delivered a knockout punch. The senior ran right over and through several defenders en route to his second touchdown of the day.
What We Learned
Texas: It was a statement win for Texas head coach Charlie Strong, who won his first game at Texas after the opposing team scored first.
“We needed tonight to get this program back in the spotlight,” Strong said after the game. “I know one game does not make a season. We have many more to go. But it’s a great start.”
The Longhorns offense looked like it did in the old days with Vince Young leading the charge. Texas took a number of deep shots and connected on them behind Buechele’s steady arm.
Notre Dame: While Texas’ two-quarterback system worked out well for them, it didn’t work out for the Irish. Head coach Brian Kelly will likely have to scrap the rotation of Kizer and Malik Zaire and start just Kizer who had five touchdowns on the day.
“No final decision has been made,” Kelly said of the quarterback situation. “It’s never easy playing two quarterbacks.”
Texas: The Longhorns will host Texas-El Paso (UTEP), which beat New Mexico State 38-22.
Notre Dame: The Irish will also play a home game against Nevada on Saturday. The Wolf Pack beat Cal-Poly 30-27 in overtime in their first game of the season.