Two years ago, we all were in a weird place. Kim Kardashian was robbed in Paris, two presidential candidates no-one liked were trying out-smear one another, AT&T bought Time Warner Cable and Bob Dylan won a Nobel Prize. Safe to say, October 2016 wasn’t the best time for anyone, except Bob Dylan. Nor was it a good time for anyone who decided to suit up and play defense in Lubbock, Texas on October 22nd.
The Oklahoma Sooners came into Lubbock trying to right the ship on their season. They had started the year off losing two of their first three games but since then had beaten ranked TCU, rival Texas and the always tough K-State. Starting quarterback Baker Mayfield was feeling himself heading into this game for more reasons than one.
This was the first and only game Mayfield played in Lubbock since his tumultuous season as a Red Raider. Since his departure, he has made sure to burn every Texas Tech bridge he had by blasting Kliff Kingsbury, blasting Lubbock and consequently being kicked out of a Lubbock restaurant. Safe to say Mayfield was pumped to show out in front of the over 60,000 fans that hated him and the coach he believes to have spurned him.
As far as Texas Tech is concerned, they were also trying to right the ship. However their ship was on its way down. Tech had lost two straight games and had fallen to 3-3. Kingsbury was on his way to missing a bowl game for the second time in three years. Tech had a weird conundrum as they had the best quarterback in the conference, but the worst defense in all of college football. Earlier that season, Patrick Mahomes had thrown for 540 yards and five touchdowns and lost. Yes lost. The offense scored 55 points and lost a football game to Arizona State. That was the defense Texas Tech was dealing with. Freshman Jordyn Brooks and sophomore JahShawn Johnson seemed to be the best players on the entire defense and leaning on teenagers to win football games simply was not and still is not the best recipe.
The game begins and from the very get go and it is all Oklahoma early on. Mayfield dropped a deep ball into the hands of his running back Joe Mixon who took it to the house for a 56-yard touchdown and then after a Texas Tech fumble, Mayfield followed it up with a dime pass to Dede Westbrook for 49 yards. It looked like it was going to be a rout.
However, Texas Tech found new life as the biracial angel Patrick Mahomes led the Red Raiders on two scoring drives to make it a game 13-10. This is truly when the game started, Both teams starting trading touchdowns and Tech even took the lead with 34 seconds left, but with the Red Raider defense, that was too much time and in two plays, Oklahoma took the lead right back before halftime 30-24.
Texas Tech was forced to punt on the possession after halftime, after that there were no more punts, no more field goals, no more ounce of defense. Oklahoma and Texas Tech would go on to score touchdowns on the next 10 consecutive possessions. We saw Joe Mixon one handed catches, we saw Mahomes score a touchdown from the 41 yard line on a 3rd and 16, we saw Mahomes fake a pitch on his way to a 21 yard touchdown run, we saw Mahomes launch a deep rocket off his back foot on his own 35 yard line all the way to the OU 15 yard line to Keke Coutee.
All of that Mahomes magic didn’t matter as every time Tech would score a touchdown Mayfield and Mixon would also go on to score a touchdown. The entire second half Tech fans were pleading with the defense to just make one stop. One stop could have won the Red Raiders the game but alas that stop never came and Mayfield dougied his way onto victory.
Mayfield finished the day with 545 passing yards and seven touchdowns while Mixon had 465 total yards and five total touchdowns himself. Mahomes simply had 819 yards and five touchdowns which is a feat we may not ever see replicated but all to no avail.
Patrick Mahomes, Baker Mayfield Keke Coutee, Dede Westbrook and Joe Mixon are all showcasing their talent in the NFL now, but we will always look back to that game on October 22nd, 2016 as possibly the wildest offensive performance we’ve ever seen.