I-A College Football News
Texas holds off Arkansas State
Sep 2, 2007, 2:50 GMT
Austin, TX - Colt McCoy threw a pair of touchdowns passes and Jamaal Charles ran for 112 yards and a score, leading fourth-ranked Texas to a 21-13 win over a pesky Arkansas State squad at Memorial Stadium in the season opener for both clubs.
McCoy ended 22-of-33 passing for 223 yards, but did throw a pair of interceptions for the Longhorns (1-0), who overcame a lackluster offensive effort to secure the win. Limas Sweed caught five balls for 93 yards with a touchdown for Texas.
'We weren't as focused as we should have been,' said McCoy. 'We give all the credit to Arkansas State. They came in and played tough. They expected to come in here and hang tight and hang with us and win, and they had a chance.'
Corey Leonard completed 22-of-36 passes for 259 yards and a pick for the Indians (0-1), who kept it close but were never a serious threat. Reggie Arnold ran for 68 yards and a score and Levi Dejohnette had six catches for 92 yards for Arkansas State.
'I am extremely proud of our effort - very proud of the character of our young men,' said Texas coach Steve Roberts. 'I am very proud tonight, but also for the work that went in for this ball game. They had an opportunity to win this game.'
The Longhorns looked poised to run away with this one early, taking their opening possession 56 yards for a TD. the big play of the drive was the scoring pass that went 35 yards to Sweed for a 7-0 edge.
The Indians responded on their next possession when Josh Arauco kicked a 45- yard field goal to cut the deficit to four points.
Texas' second touchdown was setup thanks to great field position. Arkansas State had to punt from its own end zone and Quan Crosby returned the punt 30 yards to the 16-yard line. On the first play from scrimmage, McCoy hit Antwan Cobb along the right side for a score with 2:49 left in the half.
Surprisingly, the second quarter went by without a score, as McCoy was picked off twice to halt potential scoring drives. Texas also missed out on points early in the third, as the team had to give up the ball on downs at the Arkansas State one-yard line, after Charles failed on four attempts inside the three-yard line to get into the end zone.
Charles, though, did get into the end zone to cap the Longhorns' next drive, running in from 10 yards outs for a 21-3 cushion.
Arauco hit a 28-yard field goal with 9:29 left in the contest to draw the Indians with 15 points. Then, with 56 seconds to play, Arnold scored from two yards out to round out the scoring.
Texas recovered the ensuing on-side kick and ran out the clock from there.
This was the first-ever meeting between these two schools...Texas improved to 12-0 versus Sun Belt Conference foes...Arkansas State fell to 0-15 against the Big 12...Nate Jones had nine catches for 72 yards for Texas.
© 2007 The Sports Network