Bijan Robinson scored twice and Hudson Card threw two touchdown passes in his first career start, leading No. 21 Texas to a 38-18 victory over No. 23 Louisiana-Lafayette on Saturday in coach Steve Sarkisian's Longhorns debut.
Robinson, who has garnered early attention as a potential all-American this season, scored Texas' first touchdown on a pass from Card in the first quarter, then punched in another on a 7-yard run on the first possession of the third that put Texas ahead 21-6.
Robinson finished with 176 total yards rushing and receiving in the kind of all-around game Sarkisian had promised to use.
Card, a second-year freshman who won the starting job over fourth-year player Casey Thompson, was 14-of-21 passing for 224 yards and no interceptions. He also scrambled out of pressure well and had a 3-yard touchdown run in the third quarter after Louisiana had closed to 21-12.
Sarkisian, a former head coach at Washington and Southern California, was Alabama's offensive coordinator last season when the Crimson Tide won the national championship. Texas hired him to replace Tom Herman, who was fired after four winning seasons and four bowl wins but no Big 12 championships.
Levi Lewis passed for 282 yards and a touchdown for Louisiana.
Louisiana: The Ragin' Cajuns certainly weren't scared of Texas with 20 starters back from last season's 10-win team. But all that experience, especially on defense, had to battle the intense afternoon heat that sizzled in the high 90s. When the offense started 0-4 on third down and Texas put together two long drives for touchdowns in the first half, Louisiana looked like it simply got worn down.
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Texas: Card was solid in his debut, made sharp throws on the touchdown passes and made Sarkisian look smart in picking him ahead of Thompson as the No. 1 quarterback. Sarkisian also kept his promise to play both. Thompson came in late in the third quarter and threw a touchdown pass to Jordan Whittington in the fourth that made it 35-12. Thompson had considered transferring after the 2018 season but stuck around for two more years behind Sam Ehlinger, only to lose the starting job when finally given a chance to earn it.
Louisiana-Lafayette hosts FCS opponent Nicholls State next Saturday.
Texas plays at former Southwest Conference and future Southeastern Conference rival Arkansas next Saturday.
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