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November 2, 2013The Kansas defense was getting stops and the Jayhawks had the ball trailing just 14-6 midway through the third quarter. Then the Longhorns came up with a big play stripping Jake Heaps of the ball and taking it back for a 21-6 lead.
Just like that the momentum had switched and Texas would push the lead to 28-6 at the end of the third quarter.
Until then the Kansas defense had held the Texas offense in check. Texas running back Johnathan Gray entered the game the Big 12's second leading rusher and finished with 68 yards.
"They (Kansas) did some things we didn't see on film and it kind of got to us," Gray said of the slow start. "We had to regroup and come back at have time and just adjust. And that's what we did. We played a great game and did our job."
Although the Kansas defense slowed down Gray it was Malcolm Brown that stepped up with 119 yards rushing.
The Longhorns finished with 221 yards rushing. Kansas head coach Charlie Weis said earlier in the week that Texas had a physical offensive line and their running game would be a challenge. The Kansas defensive backs did a good job most of the day in one-on-one coverage.
[Full game recap KU vs. Texas]
"A lot of our shots we didn't connect on and those [Kansas defensive backs] definitely played well today," said quarterback Case McCoy. "Johnathan and Malcolm played incredible. Johnathan kept toting the rock like he always does, and Malcolm got into the end zone several times. I think the running game is there, and it is going to continue to be there. That's who we are."
After the game most of the players and coaches on both sides agreed the big play in the game was the fumble return by defensive tackle Chris Whaley. That seemed to swing the momentum back into the Longhorns favor. Instead of Kansas with the ball down 14-6 it turned into a 21-6 advantage.
"We got that late field goal to build up our juice in the locker room," said Kansas head coach Charlie Weis. "Then we came back and got the early field goal, and now you're playing into the middle of the third quarter with having a chance to get the lead and go ahead. Then the strip-sack fumble was honestly the key play of the game where all of the momentum changed in one play and that was it."
[Box Score: Kansas vs. Texas]
Kansas safety Isaiah Johnson had two interceptions giving him four on the season. When Texas scored on the fumble return he felt the game swing to the other side.
"They just picked it up and it just seemed like the momentum changed," Johnson said. "We still had our head high."
The offense had one of their better days of production in Big 12 play with 306 yards of offense. Although they moved the ball better, it didn't show like they wanted on the scoreboard.
"We hung in there with them," Heaps said. "We came wanting to take this game away from them, and we stayed in it for a while there coming out of halftime. It was a one score game pretty much the whole game. On offense we needed to finish a couple of drives. We got some field goals, but I wish we really could have gotten some points out of those drives."
Weis said he wasn't happy when Matt Wyman missed his first field goal so he made a change at kicker. He went back to Ron Doherty who handled the kicking last year. Doherty said they talked this week he might get a chance to get in the game.
Doherty made both of his field goals attempts.
"It felt good," Doherty said. "I love this team. I love the guys on this team, and I was very excited to get out there and help them out."