Heartbreak in Dallas: OU loses to Texas 48-45

(Editor’s Note: Bobby is really drunk so forgive any spelling mistakes; also Bobby is the editor so they will not be corrected)

Have you ever been kicked in the balls, or whatever the female equivalent is?

That was today’s game.

After a flat, sloppy first three quarters, OU mounted a comeback for the ages on Texas, spurred by a wild 67 yard run by Kyler Murray and an incredible final drive by the Sooners.

Unfortunately, OU left too much time on the clock. The Horns dissected the OU defense the way they had all game, got in position for the game winning field goal and nailed it. Without a doubt, I have never been more heartbroken by a Red River loss. This was OUR moment; a 21 point comeback in OU-Texas is the stuff of legend. But combined with an awful PI call on OU and the return of shotty defense, OU blew it.

After the game, I lost my friends. In my daze, I could not keep up with them. I ended up wandering the fair for hours, before returning home and writing this article. I am very upset. However, this season is far from over. The Playoff run is wounded, but still alive.

I look forward to seeing the Horns in Arlington.

Up Next: A much needed bye week, then in Ft. Worth for TCU.

How to Do the State Fair of Texas

It’s that time of year again. While by now those of you going to the game probably have a game plan on what to do on Friday night, the planning for Saturday morning is arguably more important. This year, OU-Texas goes back to its traditional 11 AM slot, so maximizing your time at the fair is even more important than it was last year.

The hungover early morning stumble to get to the fair can be quite the hassle. Between the crowds, the heat, acquiring Coupons (more on that) and handling a head splitting hangover while simultaneously trying to pregame is a lot to juggle in just a few short hours.

Thankfully, that’s where we at The Schooner Blog come in. Through years of grizzled Red River experience and hours (okay, maybe a few minutes) of research, we have compiled everything you need to be State Fair ready.

Coupons:

The first and most important thing to know about the Fair is none of the vendors accept cards or cash. What you’ll need instead are Coupons, these weird little tickets sold in massive strips. Each coupon is worth 50 cents, so you’ll want to load up. For example, one standard beer is typically worth 12 Coupons, so don’t worry about overbuying. If anyone is trying to give any extras, you jump on them ASAP. Even if you don’t end up using them, Coupons roll over annually so you can save for next year, if you play your cards right. If you want, you can even go ahead and get some right now and skip the line.

Eating at the Fair

The Timeless, ‘Must Have’ Classic

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While some of the most insane food creations in the world can be found here, let me implore you to skip the temptation of items like the Funnel Cake Bacon Queso burger. The best food item here is the Fletcher’s Corny Dog. Now, the Corny Dog is not to be confused with the generic, average corn dogs found throughout the Fair. This piece of heaven on a stick has been around for 76 years and is, hands down, the greatest food item I can think of.

The lines are absurdly long, but missing out on this experience would leave your OU-Texas weekend incomplete. The main Fletcher’s stand is right under Big Tex, the massive talking cowboy statue that’s impossible to miss, but there are plenty around Fair Park with shorter lines. The legendary @SoonerTracker on Twitter even created this handy map of not only all the places where you can find Fletcher’s, but the best places for beer as well.

New for 2018 at Fletcher’s ? The Cheezy Pup, which is cheese fried in Corny Dog batter. I’ll just stick with the standard classic. Price: 12 Coupons

Big Tex Choice Award Picks

Each year, new contenders step up to the plate to take home one of the most prestigious titles of them all: the Big Tex Choice Award. While there are only three winners (Best Taste Savory, Best Taste Sweet and Most Creative), most of the finalists are just as good if not better. Here’s a look at what won this year.

(You can map out the locations of these items and many more here!)

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Best Taste (Savory): Fernie’s Hoppin’ John Cake with Jackpot Sauce

Yeah, honestly I have no idea what this is. The description from BigTex.com lists it as being a fried mix of “creamy black-eyed peas, fluffy white rice, spicy smoked sausage, aromatic green onions, and a secret blend of spices are combined with breadcrumbs and eggbeaters to form a generous Texas-sized cake” and something called Jackpot Sauce that Guy Fieri is almost certainly behind. While most State Fair foods can be described as “normal food but fried so it’s weird”, this seems like a legitimate dish that I wouldn’t be stunned to come across in some quaint run down place in East Texas.

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Best Taste (Sweet): Arroz con Leche (Sweet Crispy Rice)

This looks absolutely lovely. I don’t know if these rice balls are a traditional Hispanic dessert or not outside of the fair, but I need them to be. Just listen to the description; “A cinnamon-spiced rice ball is formed, battered, and coated in crispy puffed rice cereal. The ball is then deep fried to golden perfection”. Even though I’m wary of eating ice cream in the unforgiving Texas heat, this looks incredibly good.

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Most Creative: Cotton Candy Taco

I have a bone to pick with this one. Taking a non-traditional spin on the taco isn’t exactly anything new. There are entire restaurant chains based on doing creative things with tacos; so how is this most creative? It doesn’t look bad at all, don’t get me wrong, but most creative? Seems like a low bar.

The Schooner Blog “Based on the Photo” Choice Awards

As most of the contributors to the Schooner Blog live in Oklahoma, none of us have had the chance to actually try these. However, we can give some advice on what looks best among the Big Tex finalists. Here is what me and fellow Schooner Pod host Jamison Maxwell highlighted as what we’re keeping an eye on.

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Texas Fried Hill Country 

This dish combines two things that I’m an absolute sucker for; caprese and fried food. Give me that perfect mixture of mozzarella, tomato and basil and I’m all over it every time. This looks like the a perfect postgame stop if I’m tired of Corny Dogs (which, I mean, c’mon) and is on the top of my radar.

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Fernie’s ORANGE YOU GLAD WE FRIED IT?!

The desert selection for the crew, this looks like the perfect postgame dish for those wanting a something little sweet after their football. Big Tex describes it as, “Layers of chiffon orange cake, whipped cream, and citrusy orange preserves are lightly blended to form a custard filling. The mixture is spooned into flaky puff pastry dough, folded turnover style, and sealed before being fried into little crescent-shaped pillows, dusted with powdered sugar.” Sounds like a winner to me.

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Corn Dog Ale

I’m not sure if I find this fascinating or disgusting. Probably both. The beer itself is “an amber ale brewed with a blend of Pale 2-Row barleys, caramel malt, and smoked malt” with spices added in to give the beer the taste of a corn dog. To top it off, the beer is garnished with a mustard rim. I’ve had some strange beers in my days, as Weekend Spread contributor Blake Crowley can attest to (s/o to The Salty Lady and Cup ‘O Beer), but this might be the strangest yet. Look for Jamison and I’s official video review on gameday (if we aren’t too drunk and forget).

Drinking at the Fair

The Cotton Bowl, despite being owned by the city and having no university affiliation, does not sell beer in the stands. This is probably for the best as this game gets as heated as any in college football. With that being said, you need to be prepared if you want to maximize your time and money.

Beer prices vary, but there is one mythical stand with 6 Coupon beers. It allegedly is called The Beer Barn, although I have yet gotten lucky enough to find it. You can get Coors Banquet, Coors Light, Miller Lite, PBR and Lone Star. You should be able to find it here on the map.

If you have are a bit of a beer snob like myself, check out the Magnolia Beer Garden. This place has an expansive selection of beer from across Texas and the world. If you want to attempt to look cultured to your girlfriend or group of friends, head over to the Wine Garden, which features over 40 wineries from the State of Texas. There are plenty other beer and wine gardens around the fair (including Yardbirds, where you can find the aforementioned Corn Dog beer) but these are the highlight locations.

If you want to stick to wax cup Coors Light, more power to you. There are attractions for those that don’t want to just drink, but hey, that’s just not me at this point in time. The Texas Star, a 200+ foot ferris wheel that ranks as the third largest in the nation, is a trip that could be pretty cool. However, I’d prefer to spend my time on the ground and drinking.

If you somehow survive a full day at the fair from an 11 AM kickoff to make it to the late night show, Aaron Watson is performing at 8:30 PM on the Chevrolet Main Stage. While staying that late in Fair Park is a bit of a death wish, it’s a solid country show you get free with your game ticket. If you are a more seasoned vet who is done with the bar scene, this could be a good nightcap option.

Map:

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Game Week: #19 Texas

Believe it or not, it’s here: OU-Texas weekend is upon us. While this season’s edition is pushed up a week from its traditional second weekend in October, this is the official sign that we are in the thick of football season. With both teams ranked for the first time since 2012, we can officially say it: the rivalry is back on folks.

Meet the Longhorns:

I don’t really know what to say here. It’s Texas. While there are teams I certainly have deeply loathed over the years, there is no amount of hatred for a team than the one that burns for these guys. Over the past years, the rivalry’s importance may have faded due to constant trash Longhorn teams but the hatred never left.

I hate their color. I hate their logo. I hate their cannon. I hate their fight song. I hate just about everything involving these guys.

However, the past few years it just hasn’t felt right. Rivalries are great not only because the stakes are higher, but because the danger of losing is usually significant. Without that danger going in, the game simply doesn’t have the same weight. Even when OU managed to beat bad Texas teams, the vibe felt more “yeah, well, we were supposed to win” than “hell yeah, we beat Texas!”. And if you lose…the embarrassment is ten-fold.

But now, here we are, back to a ranked matchup for the first time in five years. The just feels right again.

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Who to Watch For:

#11 Sam Ehlinger, QB

Honestly, I have no idea who to spotlight other than Ehlinger. He’s the only play that stands out for the Horns offensively, but his play has been just okay. The rushing is bad and the receiving game is usually limited to a few big plays (Editor’s Note: Texas DOES have two wideouts over 6’4; this will be an issue and we end up discussing it in our OU-Texas special of The Schooner Pod). This just kind a bit of an unspectacular team on paper. It makes much more sense how their punter won Texas Bowl MVP after my research.

Expect Ehlinger to manage the game the same way quarterback Charlie Brewer did Saturday; stay on the field and whittle away at the defense until they make a mistake.

Series History: 61-46-5 (Texas)

This one of the few series that Oklahoma actually trails. While the gap isn’t as close as one would assume, this a series that started before Oklahoma was a state. In recent history, the series has had a much more narrow slant.

One strange stat? In games this millennia where both teams are ranked, OU holds a dominating 9-3 record against the Longhorns. It’s strangely clear that the Sooners simply just show up more when Texas has a good record.

This is Day 1 of our week long OU-Texas preview series. Tomorrow, get ready for our State Fair guide: you won’t want to miss it!

College Gameday is Coming to the Red River Shootout: Why You Shouldn’t Watch it in Person

Like a white plume of smoke bellowing from the Sistine Chapel, ESPN dropped a tweet early Sunday announcing that College Gameday will be returning to the Red River Shootout for the first time since 2011.

In other words? We have ourselves a real OU/Texas game again.

Gameday is an experience that Sooner fans have been recently very deprived of; Norman hasn’t hosted the show since 2012, despite OU being apart of four College Gameday games since as the road team (bowls and basketball don’t count). A full generation of OU students went through their four years without waking (or staying) up until five to get a spot in line to show off a sign and see college football’s groundhog, Lee Corso. It is a hallowed experience for most football schools.

However, if you spend more than a passing glance of your time at College Gameday this Saturday, you need to reevaluate your priorities.

The State Fair of Texas is a spectacle unlike any other. While plenty of my four, five and six year colleagues have grown jaded to the entire ordeal (either from repetition or worse, being from Lake Frisplancoppwer Club or whatever generic self-important suburb they crawled out of), the fair is one of the major things that make OU/Texas one of the best weekends of the year. The breakfast pairing of a fresh out the frier Fletcher’s Corny Dog with a wax cup Shiner Bock is one that would obliterate a Saturday morning steak prepared by Gordon Ramsey himself. I could write a thousand words about the experience (and probably will this week).

So with all this incredible stuff going on, why voluntarily choose to stare at the back of four dude’s heads for an extended amount of time?

Gameday is great on campuses because there is usually nothing else to do at that time. The game you are there to see usually kicks off at 2:30 or 6 so you have plenty of time to tailgate. Plus, do you have anything better to do at that hour?

At the Fair, you certainly do. Your time is limited. Even if you are waiting to experience the fair for post game, there are countless better uses for your time than Gameday. Eat a good breakfast, sleep in a little longer, take a few extra shots for your post-Friday night rally. Besides, the thing anyone cares about in the first place with Gameday, the Corso Headgear pick, happens in the stadium so you get it see it anyways.

Be excited that Gameday is back to our beloved Rivalry, if only for the heightened status it brings. Just don’t be excited to the point of sticking around to watch it.