Texas' Steve Sarkisian Says Loss to Oklahoma Hurts: 'This Will Test Our Mettle'

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVOctober 9, 2021

AUSTIN, TEXAS - SEPTEMBER 25: Head coach Steve Sarkisian of the Texas Longhorns  reacts on the sideline in the first half against the Texas Tech Red Raiders at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium on September 25, 2021 in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)
Tim Warner/Getty Images

Saturday's heartbreaking loss will be a barometer for the resilience of Texas' players in the eyes of first-year Longhorns head coach Steve Sarkisian.

"Big picture-wise, this will test our mettle," he told reporters following the last-second 55-48 defeat against Oklahoma. "This one hurts. That's what sport is about. So we're gonna have to pick ourselves back up to play a really good opponent next week. My mindset is, I'd love to get another crack at these guys, hopefully in December."

Late in the first quarter, Texas appeared to be on its way to the first signature win of Sarkisian's tenure. Casey Thompson and Joshua Moore connected for their second touchdown to help put the Longhorns up 28-7.

But Oklahoma became a different team with Caleb Williams behind center in place of Spencer Rattler, and Texas unraveled. Kennedy Brooks delivered the game-winning score on a 33-yard touchdown run with three seconds left. 

FOX College Football @CFBONFOX

THE SOONERS WIN IT πŸ”΄πŸ”₯<a href="https://twitter.com/kennedyBrooks26?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@kennedyBrooks26</a> calls game for <a href="https://twitter.com/OU_Football?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@OU_Football</a> πŸ™Œ <a href="https://t.co/Xok1vwD5pz">pic.twitter.com/Xok1vwD5pz</a>

Sarkisian's squad can't dwell on this result for too long since a date with No. 12 Oklahoma State looms Oct. 16.

The coaching staff, meanwhile, has to again look at what went wrong for the defense, which allowed 471 yards to Arkansas in a 40-21 loss in Texas' second game.

Oklahoma scored on six of its last seven possessions, and Brooks' pivotal run was emblematic of the lack of resistance Texas provided. He averaged 8.7 yards per carry and finished with 217 yards.

Pat Forde @ByPatForde

Incredible comeback for Oklahoma. As for Texas defense .... you are allowed to impede a running back with the ball.

Texas (4-2) likely lost any remaining shot to qualifying for the College Football Playoff, but it could still secure a berth in the Big 12 Championship Game.

As deflating as Saturday may have been, the Longhorns have a lot to play for the rest of the way.