AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Jonathon Brooks rushed for 217 yards and two touchdowns to lead No. 3 Texas to a 40-14 win Saturday over No. 24 Kansas, which lost standout quarterback Jalon Daniels in pregame warmups with back stiffness.
Quinn Ewers passed for 325 yards and ran 30 yards for the game’s first score. Texas (5-0, 2-0 Big 12) also got another standout game from its defense, which has surrendered just three touchdowns in the past three games.
Brooks’ first touchdown came on a 54-yard ru n. His second came after Texas recovered a fourth-down fumble, putting the Longhorns ahead 26-14 late in the third quarter.
Texas finished with 336 yards rushing and 661 yards overall, and wore down Kansas (4-1, 1-1) in the second half. The Longhorns blew the game open in the fourth quarter with Ewer’s touchdown pass to Adonai Mitchell and the quarterback’s second touchdown run.
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Brooks was behind freshman C.J. Baxter on the depth chart when the season started. He now has three consecutive 100-yard rushing games.
Kansas was hamstrung by the unexpected loss of Daniels, the preseason Big 12 offensive player of the year, who was with the team at the start of warmups. But he didn’t finish them, leaving the offense with backup Jason Bean. Kansas managed just 260 total yards.
Bean passed for 136 yards and a 58-yard touchdown to Trevor Wilson that pulled Kansas within six points early in the third quarter. But missing Daniels, the hero of Kansas’ upset win here in double-overtime in 2021, turned the Jayhawks heavily reliant on a running game that struggled.
Daniels also missed the first game of the season with back problems. Texas hasn’t faced an opponent’s starting quarterback since beating Alabama and Jalen Milroe in the second game of the season.
Kansas: Despite giving up the big rushing yards, the Jayhawks’ defense played pretty well in the Texas heat in the mid-90s for three quarters. Two Texas drives ended near the endzone with Longhorns field goals instead of touchdowns, and Texas missed two more kicks. Kansas even snagged the first interception thrown by Ewers this season, That kept the Jayhawks in the game, but the constant pounding from Brooks and Baxter in the fourth quarter finished them off.
Texas: The Longhorns are showing tremendous balance on offense and did not punt. But a problem is emerging in the kicking game that has cost points when game are still close. Kicker Bert Auburn is 9 of 14 this season and has struggled from long range with three misses beyond 40 yards. It hasn’t hurt Texas yet, but the misses kept Kansas in the game well into the second half.
Kansas hosts new Big 12 member Central Florida next Saturday.
Texas meets border rival No. 14 Oklahoma in Dallas next Saturday.
AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-football-poll