AUSTIN, Texas (AP)—There was no post-Oklahoma letdown for Texas. Vince Young’s nearly perfect game against Colorado made sure of that.
Young ran for three touchdowns, passed for two more and No. 2 Texas avoided any chance of an upset by building an early lead and coasting to a 42-17 win over the No. 24 Buffaloes on Saturday.
Off to their best start since an 11-0 regular season in 1983, the Longhorns had appeared ripe for a loss—or at least a close game—after their emotional win over Oklahoma a week earlier snapped a five-year losing streak to the Sooners.
Instead, Texas (6-0, 3-0 Big 12) played its best half of the season to quickly put the game away. It was the kind of dominating performance the Longhorns hoped would bump them up to No. 1 until top-ranked USC pulled out a 34-31 win over No. 9 Notre Dame.
Young said he saw the Trojans’ winning play before his post-game interviews.
“There’s no disappointment. We just won a game,” Young said. “They’re doing their job, we’re doing ours.”
Texas has won 13 in a row dating back to the middle of last season, the second longest winning streak in the nation behind USC’s 28.
Young was flawless running and passing in the first two quarters, scoring on runs of 1, 16 and 9 yards. He also threw a 35-yard TD pass to Limas Sweed that made it 35-3. Sweed and Young hooked up for another touchdown in the fourth.
Joel Klatt led Colorado (4-2, 2-1) with 189 yards passing and two touchdowns.
Given time to throw behind a dominant performance by his offensive line, Young finished with 394 total yards with a career-high 336 passing. His 86.2 percent completion rate (25-of-29) set a Texas record. He was 16-of-18 in the first half for 258 yards.
“Vince’s performance was the best today that I’ve ever seen him,” said Texas coach Mack Brown.
And instead of a lingering hangover from the Oklahoma win, it was Colorado who had to deal with a 6-foot-5, 230-pound headache of a quarterback.
“So much for hangovers,” Brown said. “I was worried about it all week … He (Young) just break’s teams backs.”
Offensive tackle Jonathan Scott danced and waved his arms to pump up the crowd before Texas’ first snap and the Longhorns drove 90 yards in 16 plays for the game’s first TD. Young capped the drive with a 1-yard dive over the line. The Longhorns were aggressive, converting three third downs on the drive and a fourth-and-4 at the Colorado 40 when Young hit Brian Carter for 24 yards.
Young’s second touchdown came on a bobbing, weaving run after he faked left, turned right, broke a couple of tackles and reached the ball over the corner pylon.
“He makes anything he wants to happen on the football field,” Scott said.
“He just takes off and adds another dimension,” said Buffaloes linebacker Jordan Dizon, “and it kills us.”
After Klatt threw an interception, Young hit Billy Pittman for 62 yards to set up Selvin Young’s scoring run from the 5 that made it 21-0.
After his third rushing TD, Young then floated a perfect pass to Sweed in the end zone.
“We did not underestimate his throwing ability at all,” said Colorado coach Gary Barnett. “His receivers made great plays, he made great throws and we didn’t’ get any pressure on him.”
Texas came in as the No. 2 rushing team in the nation but had no trouble moving the ball through the air as Young spread it around to seven receivers.
“I don’t care if I have to run 100 times or pass it 100 times,” Young said. “Whatever it takes to win is all that matters to me.”
Defensively, Texas shut down most everything Colorado tried to do. Klatt had passed for 398 yards a week earlier in a win over Texas A&M, but was under a tough pass rush most of the game Saturday. Colorado managed just 237 total yards against Texas.
“They just flat stopped us,” said Colorado running back Hugh Charles. “Our game plan got shut out.”