Nonetheless, it was a break for Tech that the temperature was climbing toward the 60s by kickoff time, because it gave Allison ideal conditions for unleashing the Raiders' passing attack. Royal always has looked askance at the forward pass, and he had little reason to change his opinion in the first period when Tech's Larry Dupre, son of L. G. (Long Gone) Dupre of Baltimore Colt fame, intercepted Mike Cordaro's errant toss and returned the ball to the Texas 13. Three plays later the Red Raiders took a 6-0 lead as Billy Taylor fired into the end zone from the one.
With 7:20 to play, Taylor also scored the game's last touchdown, a carbon copy of his first, after Allison had taken three shots at the goal line from the two and had gained only a yard. "We were so close we didn't want to risk a fumble on a hand-off," said Allison. "I thought I'd made it the first time, and I know I did on the second." But Allison already had made his contribution to the 76-yard drive by running for 22 yards on a busted third-down pass play.
The Raiders' other touchdown came on a tackle-breaking, 15-yard run by Larry Isaac, who picked up 91 yards to surpass Donny Anderson's Tech career rushing record of 2,280 yards in 526 carries. Isaac now has 2,347 yards on 471 carries.
Texas had suffered a serious blow at the end of the first quarter, when Earl Campbell, its 231-pound fullback, was sidelined with a strained left hamstring. Campbell had savaged the middle of the Tech line for 65 yards on seven carries, and without him, Texas was forced to try running outside. The Tech defense concentrated its pursuit in that direction, often forcing Tailback Johnny (Lam) Jones out of bounds before he could turn upfield. The Raiders did not do as well with Jimmy Johnson, a 171-pound freshman who scored three touchdowns, one on a 60-yard sprint. Constanzo, who replaced Cordaro at quarterback in the first period, got the other Longhorn score on a two-yard run.
"We're no rolling ball of butcher knives, but we're a pretty good team," Royal had said of his Longhorns before the game. He is right. Texas is good, but Tech has shown it is better, and no one is more startled—or happier—about that than the erstwhile linebacker, Buell. "If I had thought about it last summer, I would have been surprised to think we'd be unbeaten this far along," he said. "But as each game progressed, we began to see we have a good team here. It's a different kind of team, sort of like the Miami Dolphins and their No-Name Defense. We don't have any big names, but everybody works as a team. I don't know how this came about—it's a psychological kind of thing—but we've got something here that's exciting."
For bucolic Lubbock, it's been downright mind-bending.