AUSTIN, Texas -- Even though West Virginia can boast the best quarterback in the country, it was a Mountaineer running back who devastated Texas on Saturday night.
Andrew Buie ripped the Longhorn defense, rushing 31 times for 207 yards and two touchdowns to help No. 8 West Virginia to a 48-45 win over 11th-ranked Texas.
West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith, who is considered the leading candidate for the Heisman Trophy, threw for 265 yards and four touchdowns. It wasn't anywhere close to his performance a week ago against Baylor, when he threw for 656 yards and eight touchdowns. But on a cool night in Austin, all Smith needed late in the game was Buie.
The 5-foot-9, 188-pound sophomore enjoyed a career evening. His previous best was 82 yards, which he rushed for against Baylor.
On the Mountaineers' final drive, with the WVU offense trying to stretch out a three-point lead, Buie rushed for 63 yards, capping it off with a 5-yard touchdown run. That gave West Virginia a 48-38 lead with 1:18 to play.
The Longhorns scored with 15 seconds remaining on a David Ash throw to Marquise Goodwin. But the onside kick was recovered by West Virginia.
Buie easily outclassed UT's much more publicized running attack. Longhorn tailback Joe Bergeron scored four touchdowns, but he gained just 49 yards.
The first half was offensive, as expected, but Texas was able to lean a bit on its defense to take a 28-27 lead at intermission.
The Longhorns sacked Smith three times and held him to a somewhat pedestrian stat line: 15 of 24 for 168 yards and two touchdowns. He also was sacked three times. Smith was able to regroup on West Virginia's final drive of the second quarter as he directed the Mountaineers on an eight-play drive that culminated in a 41-yard field goal by Tyler Bitancourt.
West Virginia had owned a 21-7 lead early in the second quarter, thanks to Smith's 8-yard touchdown pass to Stedman Bailey, his 40-yard scoring pass to Tavon Austin and Buie's 4-yard run. But the Longhorns quickly erased the deficit with a combination of offense, defense and special teams.
Carrington Byndom partially blocked a punt to give Texas the ball at midfield. The Longhorns, with three quick-hitting running plays, slashed the score to 21-14 on Joe Bergeron's second 2-yard TD run of the half.
On West Virginia's next possession, Texas defensive end Alex Okafor sacked Smith and stripped him of the ball inside the 10-yard line. It was recovered by fellow end Jackson Jeffcoat for the touchdown.
Texas took its first lead with 1:14 remaining in the half when Bergeron scored his third touchdown, from a yard out.