AUSTIN, Texas – The Kansas Jayhawks scored the most points in a road game in program history Saturday night and topped Texas 57-56 in overtime in front of 95,202 fans at Darrell K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium.
The Jayhawks won in thrilling fashion to earn their second win of the season. Trailing 56-49 in overtime, Kansas scored on its first possession of the extra session when freshman running back Devin Neal scored on a 2-yard rush. Trailing by one, coach Lance Leipold decided to go for the win and go for two points.
After a timeout to talk strategy, quarterback Jalon Daniels found tight end Jared Casey to convert and give Kansas the dramatic one-point win.
The win marks the first time ever Kansas won in Austin and marks the most points the Jayhawks have scored in a game since scoring 76 against Nebraska in 2007.
“I’m so proud of our guys,” Leipold said. “They have been through so much. They battled, they kept believing in what we’re doing. We let the lead slip away, but we talked about trying to finish and playing hard for 60 minutes. We did it and then some. I’m so proud of them and hopefully it’s something we’re going to build on.”
Neal rushed for 143 yards and three touchdowns in the win on 24 carries. He also had a 19-yard touchdown catch and had two receptions for 26 yards. Daniels, making his first start of the season, threw for 202 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions in the win.
The Jayhawks played inspired football from the start against the Longhorns. On the team’s first drive, Kansas went 75 yards on 13 plays and capped it with a 3-yard touchdown from Neal to finish off a drive that took seven minutes and two seconds.
The defense then showed it was ready to play as well when super-senior defensive end Kyron Johnson forced a fumble, which was recovered by Rich Miller to thwart the drive by the Longhorns. After Kansas recovered the fumble, the Jayhawks made it 14-0 when Daniels found tight end Mason Fairchild for an 11-yard touchdown, which marked the first of Fairchild’s career.
The Longhorns responded with a pair of touchdown passes – one from Casey Thompson and one from Hudson Card – to get back in the game and knot it up at 14 apiece.
But the Jayhawks then scored the final 21 points of the half in a 2:25 span to take a 35-14 lead into the locker room at halftime.
The first touchdown in the final flurry of the half came when Daniels scored on a 9-yard rush with 2:25 left to make it 21-14. On Texas’s third play of the ensuing drive, Johnson came up with his second sack-fumble to give the ball back to Kansas.
Three plays later, Daniels found Neal for a 19-yard touchdown pass for Neal’s first receiving touchdown of his career.
Then on the next drive for Texas, Card was intercepted by Jacobee Bryant on the first play and Bryant returned it 31 yards for a touchdown to make it 35-14.
Texas scored on the opening drive of the second to cut it to 35-21, but Kansas responded with a 10-yard touchdown run from Neal to go up 42-21. The Longhorns scored back-to-back touchdowns to get it to 42-35 with 1:21 left in the third quarter.
The Jayhawks made it a 14-point lead again when Kwamie Lassiter II caught a 2-yard touchdown pass from Daniels at the 8:47 mark of the fourth. Texas cut it to within seven with 4:39 left. The Jayhawks couldn’t score on their next possession, but true freshman safety O.J. Burroughs came up with an interception to keep it a seven-point win.
But after Kansas failed to convert a first down, Texas got the ball back and scored with 22 seconds left to tie the game at 49.
Texas (4-6, 2-5 Big 12) then scored on its opening possession of overtime to go up seven and set up the dramatic comeback for the Jayhawks.
Lassiter II finished with eight catches for 68 yards and a touchdown. Junior tight end Mason Fairchild caught the first touchdown pass of his career in the win as well and had two catches for 31 yards.
Defensively, Kenny Logan Jr., led the team with 11 tackles—all solo. Johnson had two sacks, two forced fumbles and eight tackles in the win. Rich Miller, Gavin Potter and Zion DeBose all had a tackle-for-loss as well.
The Jayhawks, who are now 2-8 overall and 1-6 in the Big 12, will return to action at TCU on Saturday at 3 p.m.