Oklahoma and Houston will play each other for the fourth time in college football history to start off their 2019 seasons. While the Sooners hold the 2-1 all-time edge, Houston was victorious in their most recent meeting in 2016.
Here is what you need to know about each prior matchup between Oklahoma and Houston.
All-time series results were compiled from Winsipedia's database.
Oklahoma vs. Houston: All-time series history and scores
Oklahoma and Houston first met in the 1981 Sun Bowl in El Paso, Texas. After a long hiatus, the two programs played again in 2004 and 2016. The chart below highlights some key all-time series numbers from their first three games.
The Sooners outscored the Coogs 103-27 in their first two head-to-head meetings before Houston won a 33-23 shocker in 2016. That latest meeting was the first of the series to be played at Houston.
Here are all the results from each Oklahoma-Houston matchup heading into the 2019 season opener.
|Sept. 3, 2016||Houston, 33-23||Houston, Texas|
|Sept. 11, 2004||Oklahoma, 63-13||Norman, Okla.|
|Dec. 26, 1981||Oklahoma, 40-14 (Sun Bowl)||El Paso, Texas|
Oklahoma vs. Houston: Notable games in series history
Sept. 3, 2016: Brandon Wilson's 109-yard TD return sparks Coogs' upset over. No. 3 OU | Box score
This top 15 matchup to kick off the 2016 college football season will be remembered for Houston cornerback Brandon Wilson's electrifying touchdown to give the Cougars a 26-17 lead in the third quarter. Wilson sprinted from the back line of one end zone all the way across the field to the other end zone on a missed 54-yard field goal attempt by Oklahoma. In the record books, it went as a 100-yard touchdown return. But unofficially, Wilson navigated a full 109 yards after making a reaching grab on his toes at the very back of the end zone to start the game-swinging play. Houston, No. 15 at the time, defeated the third-ranked Sooners 33-23 for its third-ever win over a top-3 team.
Sept. 11, 2004: Oklahoma steamrolls Houston behind Jason White's performance | Box score
Oklahoma quarterback Jason White, the 2003 Heisman winner, was 14-of-18 with 257 yards and two touchdowns in less than three full quarters of action in a 63-13 blowout win. The Sooners went on a 63-0 run after a Cougars opening drive touchdown. Backing up White's abbreviated outing was Antonio Perkins, who tied a then-NCAA record with his eighth career punt return touchdown. Perkins' mark now sits in a tie for second on the all-time FBS punt return TD list.
Dec. 26, 1981: Sooners score 30 in fourth quarter to take Sun Bowl victory | Recap
A low-scoring battle quickly turned into an Oklahoma rout in the final quarter of a 40-14 Sooners' Sun Bowl win in 1981. Oklahoma led 10-7 heading into the final quarter before outscoring the Cougars 30-7 the rest of the way. Oklahoma quarterback Darrell Shepard was named the bowl game's MVP with 107 rushing yards and a pair of touchdown runs. Shepard only attempted five passes on the day, finishing 1-of-5 for -2 passing yards.
Oklahoma vs. Houston: How to watch the 2019 season opener
Oklahoma and Houston will play in Norman, Oklahoma on Sunday, Sept. 1 during the opening weekend of college football. Oklahoma enters as the No. 4 team in the preseason AP poll; Houston starts the year unranked. Below is more tune-in information for Sunday's game.
DATE: Sunday, Sept. 1 at 7:30 p.m. ET | Live stats
LOCATION: Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium, Norman, Okla.
TV INFO: ABC
Here's a preview of Sunday's Oklahoma vs. Houston game from the AP.
WHAT’S AT STAKE?
Oklahoma saw its College Football Playoff hopes derailed in 2016 with a season-opening loss to Houston. The Sooners are well aware that a repeat would be damaging, especially because there isn’t a marquee opponent on the slate to give them a second chance if they slip. Oklahoma hired Alex Grinch as its new defensive coordinator in the offseason. An early breakdown against Houston’s high-powered offense would make it difficult to build momentum.
Oklahoma run game vs. Houston run defense. Oklahoma’s Kennedy Brooks ran for 1,056 yards last season while Trey Sermon ran for 947 yards and a team-high 13 touchdowns. Jalen Hurts, the transfer quarterback from Alabama, also is a prolific runner. The last time we saw Houston’s run defense, the Cougars were getting gouged for 507 yards rushing in a 70-14 loss to Army in the Armed Forces Bowl. With a new quarterback, the Sooners could rely on the ground game more. Houston no longer has All-American defensive lineman Ed Oliver, so there will be even more pressure on Houston’s defensive front.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Oklahoma: Hurts. He played in three national title games with Alabama, but now he’s leading coach Lincoln Riley’s system, which is much different than what he’s used to. Hurts already has gained the respect of the team since transferring in January, being named a captain. This will be the first step in seeing if he can handle the pressure of following Heisman-winning quarterbacks Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray
Houston: D’Eriq King. The senior quarterback is one of the nation’s top returning players. He was injured late last season, yet he still passed for 36 touchdowns and rushed for 14 in 11 games. He often uses his exceptional mobility to buy time to pass. The Sooners’ aggressive defense will look to create turnovers against a quarterback who threw just six interceptions last season.
FACTS & FIGURES
Oklahoma has won 13 straight home openers. ... The Sooners are beginning their 125th year of football. ... Oklahoma leads the nation in scoring and yards per game since Riley became the coach. ... Dana Holgorsen, the former West Virginia coach, is the new Houston coach. Oklahoma beat West Virginia 59-56 last season.