College Football

Robinson, Texas Running Game Rumble Over Rice 58-0

Bijan Robinson #5 of the Texas Longhorns rushes for a touchdown in the second quarter against the Rice Owls at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium on Sept. 18, 2021 in Austin, Texas.
Tim Warner/Getty Images

Bijan Robinson ran for three touchdowns in the first half and Texas rebounded from a humiliating loss a week earlier by pounding Rice 58-0 Saturday night.

Texas quarterback Casey Thompson got his first career start, but it was the Longhorns smashing running game behind Robinson and Roschon Johnson early that had the game quickly out of hand. The Longhorns rushed for 427 yards.

Robinson scored on run of of 6, 7 and 62 yards in the first half and finished with 127 on 13 carries. Johnson broke four tackles on a 72-yard scoring romp as Texas (2-1) built a 44-0 lead by halftime. Johnson had 112 yards on three carries.

Thompson spent the previous three seasons backing up Sam Ehlinger and lost to starting job to second-year freshman Hudson Card in training camp. First-year Texas coach Steve Sarkisian went with Thompson after Texas managed just 256 total yards in a 40-21 loss at Arkansas that knocked the Longhorns out of the Top 25.

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Thompson threw one early interception when he was hit on a throw, then spent most of the first half handing off to Robinson and Johnson. Thompson then closed a 28-point second quarter with touchdown passes to Jared Wiley and Xavier Worthy.

Rice (0-3) crossed midfield only once in the first half, and that drive ended in a missed 30-yard field goal attempt.

On Texas' first possession of the second half, Alabama transfer Keilon Robinson ran 65 yards for a touchdown that made it 51-0.

THE TAKEAWAY
Rice: The Owls were simply overwhelmed by the Texas run game that easily pushed them around at the line of scrimmage. Even when they got a hand on the Texas running backs, Robinson and the others easily broke through arm tackles. Offensively, the Owls tried three quarterbacks in the first half in a desperate attempt to get anything going.

Texas: When Thompson plays, Texas scores. Dating back to last season's Alamo Bowl, Thompson had led the Longhorns to points on 16 of his 18 possessions. He played mostly in mop-up duty in the first two games behind Card, who finally entered the game in the third quarter when the score was 51-0.

UP NEXT
Rice hosts FCS opponent Texas Southern next Saturday.

Texas hosts Texas Tech next Saturday to start Big 12 play.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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