DALLAS — After a barreling 9-yard rush along the Texas boundary to end the third quarter, DeMarco Murray popped right up.
But he didn't return with his teammates to the Oklahoma side of the field.
Instead, Murray stood his ground. Stared down the Texas sideline. And nodded his head up and down.
"I was just fired up," Murray said. "That was it. I wasn't saying anything."
He hardly had to. Murray's play spoke for itself.
In the most valuable performance of his four-year career, Murray rushed for 115 yards and two touchdowns, propelling OU to a 28-20 victory Saturday at the Cotton Bowl to end Texas' stranglehold on the series and keep the Sooners undefeated.
"He's not Steve Owens right now, but he's our bell cow" said offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson. "He's great kid, a great player, but he's matured into a man.
"Landry is the quarterback and the captain, but DeMarco has really been the guy setting the tone, being a leader for us."
The last two years, the Longhorns kept Murray and the Sooner run game corralled. On OU's first possession, Murray made it known that wasn't going to happen again.
"We knew coming into this game, we had to run the ball," said Murray, who had three rushing yards total the previous two Red River games. "Coach Wilson trusted us with the run game. He told us we were going to run the ball and run it well."
After his first three carries went for no gain or worse, Murray finally broke through Texas' frontline. Blocks by Trey Millard, then Donald Stephenson, then Ryan Broyles sprang Murray off tackle into the open field. Murray took care of the rest, cutting back against Texas safety Christian Scott before dashing into the end zone.
"Whether we popped that one or not, we were gonna try to stick with the run more than normal," Wilson said. "We were not going to get away from the run."
And Wilson wasn't going to get away from getting the ball to Murray, who also had four catches with 31 yards to go along with his 25 carries.
Especially when the Sooners needed a big play.
After Jackson Jeffcoat's body slam of Stephenson drew a 15-yard personal foul penalty and gave OU's drive new life to start the fourth quarter, Wilson went to Murray on three straight plays.
On the third, Murray broke around the perimeter of a Broyles block, then fell back on his summer yoga instruction, tiptoeing five steps along the sideline before somersaulting into the end zone for a 20-yard score to give the Sooners a 28-10 lead.
"DeMarco can do anything at any moment," said tackle Eric Mensik. "To see him today do what he did only instilled more confidence in myself and the offensive line for the rest of the season.
"He was special out there today."