As of Saturday morning, the Texas Longhorns’ Big 12 title aspirations hinged on two simple steps: Win out, and pray to the football gods that a key domino falls elsewhere.
That domino fell in Stillwater on Saturday evening, as the No. 9 West Virginia Mountaineers, which entered the day with just one conference blemish, were outlasted by the upset-minded Oklahoma State Cowboys on on a last-second pass breakup, 45-41. Consequently, with West Virginia now owning two conference losses and the Longhorns owning the tiebreaker over the Sooners, the winner of next weekend’s regular season-finale showdown between Oklahoma and West Virginia will head to the Big 12 Championship game in Arlington, where they’ll meet... Texas — that is, of course, if Texas can win out.
Texas took a significant step to that end on Saturday night in Austin with a 24-10 Senior Night win over No. 16 Iowa State.
Now all that remains is a road trip against the Kansas Jayhawks.
If Texas wins in Lawrence, as it’s currently heavily-favored to do per ESPN’s FPI, then Arlington awaits. Even if the Longhorns lose, victories by Oklahoma and Iowa State next weekend would still give Texas the edge in the Big 12 tiebreaker process.
If that fortunate fate does, in fact, await the Horns, it would mark the first time Texas has earned a Big 12 title bid since 2009 when the Colt McCoy-led Longhorns escaped Nebraska, 13-12, on a game-winning field goal from Hunter Lawrence.
Without or without a win this time around, Texas simply reaching that point of conference prominence would mark a tremendous step in the right direction in Tom Herman’s second season on the Forty Acres, and his Longhorns are now just one win over the Jayhawks from that feat coming to fruition.
And if Texas can get to Jerry World and win? Well, then Breckyn Hager would finally be able to cut his hair.