Oklahoma football: Notable numbers that tell the story of the Red River Rivalry

October. 6th, 2007; Dallas, TX, USA; Texas Longhorns quarterback (12) Colt McCoy throws a pass against the Oklahoma Sooners during the Red River Rivalry at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, TX. The Sooners beat the Longhorns 28 to 21. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports (c) copyright 2007
October. 6th, 2007; Dallas, TX, USA; Texas Longhorns quarterback (12) Colt McCoy throws a pass against the Oklahoma Sooners during the Red River Rivalry at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, TX. The Sooners beat the Longhorns 28 to 21. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports (c) copyright 2007 /

It’s Texas State Fair time, and that means it’s time — the 119th time, actually — for the annual college football border war between Oklahoma and Texas known as the Red River Rivalry.

The annual football battle royal between the Sooners and Longhorns in the Cotton Bowl in Dallas is the headline event every year at the State Fair of Texas, and this year the game takes on a special flavor with both teams coming into the game undefeated and, as has been typical through the years, ranked among the nation’s top-25 teams.

One of the classic rivalries in college football, the OU-Texas game has been played in Dallas every year but two since 1912 and in the Cotton Bowl during the state fair since 1932. Dallas was ultimately selected as the permanent site for the game because it is approximately equidistant between the Oklahoma campus in Norman and the Texas campus in Austin.

All roads leading north and south toward Dallas in the 24-to 48-hours before game time are packed with endless streaming lines of motorized vehicles carrying passionate fans and noticeable markings proudly declaring their diehard allegiance.

On Saturday, close to 90,000 fans will descend on Fair Park, southeast of downtown Dallas and site of the State Fair of Texas. Therein sits the historic Cotton Bowl, site of the 119th renewal of the classic OU-Texas rivalry and the last as members of the Big 12 Conference.

As members of the Big 12, Oklahoma owns a 17-11 record in the rivalry series, but of course these two longtime rivals played many years before becoming members of the Big 12 and will continue to do so as newcomers to the SEC beginning next season.

It is one of the only college football rivalry games in which the stadium is equally divided in fans of the two schools. Half of the stadium, between the 50-yard lines, sports the crimson colors of Oklahoma, and the other half is fully adorned in burnt orange, the school color of the Longhorns. It is truly a striking site to witness in person.

The first college football game was played in 1869 between Rutgers and what was then College of New Jersey (now known as Princeton). The first Oklahoma football game was contested 26 years later in 1895. OU and Texas met for the first time on the gridiron in 1900.

All of that took place before the Oklahoma even achieved statehood. That wasn’t until 1907.

The game was played in Austin 10 times and in Houston once between 1900 and 1923. Oklahoma was the home team on six occasions during that time frame, including three times when the game was played in Oklahoma City.

Here are some other notable numbers that help tell the story of this classic rivalry series:

3 — Number of trophies exchanged pending the outcome of each game in the series: The Golden Hat, a gold, 10-gallon-style hat awarded to the winning team and placed on display in the winning team’s athletic department; the Governor’s Trophy, exchanged between the governors of the two states; and the Red River Rivalry Trophy, the newest of the three awards, exchanged between the student governments of the two schools.

8 — Consecutive wins by Oklahoma over Texas between 1940 and 1947, the most by either team in the long history of the rivalry. That was followed by the Sooners winning nine of the next 10 games in the series under legendary coach Bud Wilkinson.

30 — Total wins by Bud Wilkinson, Barry Switzer and Bob Stoops versus Texas. Switzer had the best record against Texas, at 9-5, but lost his last three games to the Longhorns. Stoops was 12-7 against Texas. Wilkinson had the worst record against the Sooners biggest rival, going 9-8, including losing his final six games against Texas.

48 — Total points scored by Texas in the six games with Oklahoma from 1952 to 1957. The Sooners’ combined points in winning all six games was 168.

49 — Texas defeated Oklahoma 49-0 in 2022, the largest margin of victory by the Longhorns over the Sooners in the century-old series.

50 — Oklahoma has scored 50 or more points six times against Texas since the 2000 season. The Sooners scored that many points only one time in the OU-Texas series before the 2000 season.

63 — Wins by Texas in the all-time series with Oklahoma. The Longhorns lead the overall series with a record of 63-50-5.

65 — Points scored by Oklahoma in defeating Texas 65-13 in 2003. That is the most points scored by either team in the 116-year history of the rivalry.

75 — Number of OU-Texas sellouts at the Cotton Bowl since 1948.

79 — Total number of games in the OU-Texas rivalry since 1945, or post World War II. From 1945-2020, Oklahoma has won 39 times, Texas 37 times and there have been three ties.

128 — Points by which Oklahoma has outscored Texas in the Cotton Bowl since the 2000 season.

1900 — The year of the inaugural game in this historic rivalry, won by Texas 28-2.

1963 — The game that year featured No. 1 Oklahoma vs. No. 2 Texas, one of only two times in the 117-year history of the series that the Sooners and Longhorns were the top two teams in the country at the time the game was played. Texas won the 1963 game 28-7 and took over the top spot in the Associated Press poll, which it held for the remainder of the season. In 1984, Texas entered the Red River rivalry game as the nation’s top-ranked team, with the Sooners sitting at No. 2. That game ended in a no-decision. The final score was 15-15. Also of note, former Texas head coach Mack Brown was on the OU sidelines for the 1984 game. He was the Sooners’ offensive coordinator that season under Barry Switzer.