Baylor’s nation’s best 20-game home winning streak is over and its shot at the College Football Playoff is probably gone with it.
With Baker Mayfield passing for 270 yards and three touchdowns and Samaje Perine rushing for 166 yards and two scores, No. 12 Oklahoma literally rained on No. 4 Baylor’s parade by pulling off a 44-34 win before an electric blackout crowd of 49,875 on Saturday night, the largest ever at McLane Stadium.
The Sooners (9-1, 6-1) handed the Bears (8-1, 5-1) their first loss in two seasons at McLane Stadium. With a loss on its resume, Baylor’s shot at the College Football Playoff appears slim with three games remaining, including road dates at No. 5 Oklahoma State and No. 13 TCU in the next two weeks.
“It was a tough outcome, of course,” Baylor coach Art Briles said. “Oklahoma is a good team and we just made too many mistakes and had some untimely penalties at the end. OU played extremely well and got out of here with the win.”
The Bears still have a shot at their third straight Big 12 title, but will need to beat unbeaten Oklahoma State next weekend in Stillwater for a legitimate chance for the championship.
“The good thing is we can still control our own destiny and we’ll see where it ends up,” Briles said. “There’s a few of us banging around with one loss and we’ll see how it happens.”
Making his second start for the Bears, freshman Jarrett Stidham hit 16 of 27 for 257 yards and two touchdowns. But he also threw two interceptions, including one by Ahmad Thomas that sealed the game for the Sooners with 4:35 remaining.
With 270 yards passing and 241 yards rushing, the Sooners piled up 511 yards compared to Baylor’s 416. Sterling Shepard enjoyed a tremendous game for Oklahoma with 14 catches for 177 yards and two scores. Baylor’s Corey Coleman made three catches for 51 yards, but didn’t score a touchdown for the first time this season.
“They rolled to Corey a whole lot, and doubled him a bunch,” Briles said. “We didn’t do a good job of taking advantage of the things we had. We had been pretty good running the football this year and we weren’t very good tonight. That certainly hurt us.”
Clinging to a 37-34 lead in the fourth quarter, the Sooners responded with the game’s definitive drive by moving 78 yards on 10 plays. Mayfield finished it off by scrambling away from a pair of Baylor defenders and hitting Dimitri Flowers for the 7-yard touchdown with 4:47 remaining.
Baylor nickelback Travon Blanchard was penalized for a 15-yard horse collar tackle on Mayfield to boost the start of Oklahoma’s drive.
With the game tied at 20 in the third quarter, the Sooners quickly put the Bears on the ropes with a pair of touchdowns.
Mayfield scrambled for 38 yards to the 8 and then fired a bullet over the middle to Shepard for a 7-yard touchdown.
Following a 27-yard punt by Baylor’s Drew Galitz, Perine broke loose for a 55-yard touchdown run to give the Sooners a 34-20 lead with 8:53 left in the third quarter.
But Stidham went to his tight ends to pull within seven. After hitting Gus Penning for 39 yards, Stidham fired a 5-yard touchdown pass to 400-pound LaQuan McGowan to cut Oklahoma’s lead to 34-27 with 2:49 left in the third quarter.
The Sooners answered with Austin Seibert’s 33-yard field goal early in the fourth quarter. But the Bears pinned Oklahoma inside the 5 on its next possession to force a punt.
Following a 27-yard pass to KD Cannon, Stidham avoided blitzing linebacker Devante Bond and fired a 17-yard touchdown pass to Jay Lee to cut Oklahoma’s lead to 37-34 with 10:29 left in the game.
The Bears put together their best drive of the first half when they moved 80 yards on nine plays on their first possession.
Shock Linwood was the go-to player as he picked up 51 yards on four carries, including a 34-yard blast up the middle that pushed the Bears to the Sooners’ 46. Linwood finished the game with 103 yards.
Devin Chafin finished off the drive with a 5-yard touchdown run as he walked into the end zone. But a bobbled snap by holder Cole Edmiston left Baylor’s lead at 6-0 with 10:26 left in the first quarter.
The Sooners were impressive on their second drive as they drove 65 yards on 11 plays.
Mostly hitting short passes, Mayfield moved the Sooners briskly while Perine carried the running game. Perine completed the drive with a 6-yard touchdown run in which he shook off Baylor defenders Brian Nance and Taylor Young and dragged Orion Stewart into the end zone to give the Sooners a 7-6 lead.
Baylor’s offense then went into a deep freeze as it failed to score on four straight possessions.
Chafin’s fumble was recovered by Oklahoma’s Bond at Baylor’s 38. But after Mayfield hit Shepard for 13 yards, the Sooners were hurt by offensive lineman Orlando Brown’s personal foul and they were forced to punt.
While the Bears couldn’t move the ball with any consistency, the Sooners drove 80 yards for their second touchdown.
With Blanchard coming hard with a blitz, Mayfield lofted a perfect 39-yard touchdown pass to Shepard for the touchdown as the Sooners grabbed a 13-6 lead with 8:53 left in the second quarter.
The Bears answered with a 58-yard drive that was mostly the work of Linwood and Chafin. Chafin pounded for a 3-yard touchdown to tie the game at 13 with 2:58 left in the second quarter.
With Mayfield showing his passing and running skills, the Sooners had plenty of time to score their third touchdown of the first half.
Mayfield hit Joe Mixon out of the backfield for 18 yards and then found Flowers for 19. Mayfield pulled off a bootleg on the next play for a 2-yard touchdown run to give the Sooners a 20-13 lead with 28 seconds left in the first half.
Kicked off by Stidham’s 37-yard pass to Coleman, the Bears opened the third quarter with a nine-play 75-yard drive. Chafin rumbled 6 yards for his third touchdown to tie the game at 20 with 12:28 left in the third quarter.