Norman, Ok— The first major upset of the 2020 season when No #3 ranked Oklahoma lost to unranked Kansas State at home 38-35 after leading by three touchdowns in the third quarter at Owen Field.
The Sooners outgained K-State in yardage 517-400, had 28 first downs to the Wildcats’ 10 and held KSU to a 2-for-11 performance on third downs, but was outscored 17-0 in the fourth quarter which was the difference in the game.
The game looked liked it was going to be a blowout for the Sooners, especially how quarterback Spencer Rattler was throwing the ball in the half. He completed 17 of 19 passes for 181 yards and three scores in the first half. But two costly interceptions kept OSU from extending its lead. The Sooners were up 21-7 at the half.
OSU entered the day with a 17-game home winning streak and were looking for their eighth consecutive Big 12-opening victory, but four turnovers derailed them from that.
“We just made critical errors that gave them a chance,” Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley said. “Give Chris Klieman and Kansas State a lot of credit. When we made errors, they made us pay.”
The Sooners scored two touchdowns in the third quarter to lead 35-14, but K-State offense kicked it up another notch. The Wildcats scored touchdowns on four consecutive drives and kept OU scoreless in the fourth quarter. The Sooners’ final five drives resulted in a fumble, three punts and a game-ending pick (Rattler’s third INT of the game).
Rattler completed 30- 41 passes for a career-high 387 yards along with four touchdowns and three interceptions. He became only the fourth OU quarterback to throw eight TD passes in his first two career starts, joining Josh Heupel in 1999, Sam Bradford in 2007 and Landry Jones (nine TD passes) in 2009.
“He’s a young guy in his second start,” Riley said of Rattler. “We’re going to continue to build on it and he’s going to continue to get better and get coached better as well.”
After a 39-yard touchdown dart from KSU’s Skylar Thompson to Chabastin Taylor cut into the Sooners’ lead, Rattler was not down with two TD throws — to Mims (9 yards) and wide open Jeremiah Hall (21 yards) — gave OU a 28-7 lead with 6:35 to go in the third quarter.
Thompson scored on a 1-yard power play on the K-State ‘s next possession, but Oklahoma pushed the lead back to 21 points when Seth McGowan ran it in from 5-yards out with 2:46 to go in the third quarter.
K-State made some adjustments on offense and took it to the Sooners. The Wildcats scored the game’s final 24 points to improve to 1-1 overall and 1-0 in the Big 12. Thompson scored on two more times on runs of 2 and 4 yards before Deuce Vaughn ties the game at 35 with 8:17 to go with a 38-yard TD sprint.
The Sooners (1-1, 0-1) were forced to punt on their next possession, and K-State drove 29 yards to set up a go-ahead 50-yard field goal by Blake Lynch with 4:32 remaining. OU’s final two drives ended with a punt and an interception.
McGowan led the Sooners in rushing for the second straight game, finishing with 73 yards on 13 carries (5.6 average)
“We’re very disappointed, but the resolve is very strong,” Riley said. “We know how to respond to a loss around here, and we’ll do it, and it’s going to take every single one of us.”
Oklahoma will play their first road game of 2020 when they face Iowa State (1-1, 1-0) next Saturday in Ames, Iowa.