For the second time this season, Oklahoma staved off an upset-minded opponent to keep its Big 12 and College Football Playoff hopes alive. And for the second time, that win came in controversial fashion.
On Saturday, the victory was secured after an iffy spot by officials, who awarded Sooners quarterback Jalen Hurts a first down that allowed Oklahoma to run the clock out instead of punting the ball to TCU for one final drive.
Oklahoma ended up winning 28-24 and securing a berth in a fourth consecutive Big 12 championship game (2010, 2017-19).
Here's a replay of the pivotal spot. The video seems to show Hurts was stopped well short of the line to gain on third down.
Oklahoma got a first down on this play to seal the game... k pic.twitter.com/kATsjs3bso
— ️ ️Ⓜ️ (@big__bam) November 24, 2019
Officials gave Hurts the first down on the field and, after a lengthy review, said the call on the field stood. It was yet another controversial call by Big 12 officials in an OU game; refs failed to call what looked to be defensive pass interference by Oklahoma on Iowa State's 2-point conversion attempt in the final seconds of the Sooners' 42-41 win on Nov. 9.
Regardless, Oklahoma advanced to 10-1 (7-1 Big 12) with the victory. Hurts finished the game with 318 combined yards and four touchdowns (and two turnovers that nearly cost his team dearly).
Here are some of the reactions from the controversial first-down spot:
Tonight’s @Big12Refs officiating crew just robbed TCU out of a chance at victory against Oklahoma. Nothing new.
— Burnt Orange Nation (@BON_SBNation) November 24, 2019
And Oklahoma is going to win because of it. Just a horrific spot, but no way to overturn it.
FINAL: Oklahoma 28, TCU 24
— Yahoo Sports College Football (@YahooSportsCFB) November 24, 2019
TCU just got robbed. No way that was a first down vs. Oklahoma.
— Barrett Sallee (@BarrettSallee) November 24, 2019
That last replay review went like:
"Where is the spot. Where did he get to?"
"Oklahoma is our last chance at a playoff spot in Big12. The call on the field is correct. He made the spot of gain."
"Alright.......call stands. Game over."
— Trent Smallwood (@SmallwoodTrent) November 24, 2019
The Big 12 has 10 teams. They’re fine with 4th-and-close-enough for Oklahoma. Math isn’t a strong suit.
— Dan Wetzel (@DanWetzel) November 24, 2019