The Texas A&M Aggies put an emphatic exclamation mark on a memorable season with a 41-13 Cotton Bowl victory over the Oklahoma Sooners.
Oh yeah, that Johnny Manziel kid played pretty well too.
The Heisman-winning quarterback led the charge for the electric Aggies, racking up yardage with his arm and legs to put the Sooners in a deep hole that they could not climb out of. The freshman finished with four total touchdowns on 287 yards passing and 229 yards rushing.
The game was a classic tale of two halves. Oklahoma kept the game close in the first half, but the second stanza was a different story.
In the first half, the OU defense wasn't able to stop Manziel and company, but it held him to 14 points on two rushing scores. Meanwhile, quarterback Landry Jones kept his team in the game with a passing touchdown that brought the score to 14-13 at the half.
Unfortunately for the Sooners, the Aggies put the game out of reach in the second half. They went off in the third quarter to the tune of 21 points as the Sooners struggled to slow down the onslaught.
After a 2011 that was defined by second-half swoons, the Aggies proved that they aren't into giving away games under Kevin Sumlin. The foot stayed on the gas until the very end, as the Aggies threw in a fourth-quarter touchdown for good measure.
Manziel's supporting cast showed up in a big way too. Senior wideout Ryan Swope punctuated his career as an Aggie by breaking the century mark in yards receiving (104) and tacking on one touchdown. He consistently found ways to get open against the Sooner secondary, and it showed in the box score.
With Manziel coming back for his sophomore season, this is a win that is sure to make the Aggies one of the most talked about teams heading into 2013.
With a ton of star power in an excellent matchup, this was one of the most heavily attended Cotton Bowl's in history, according to Jimmy Burch of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
#CottonBowl attendance is 87,025, second largest in history of the game.— Jimmy Burch (@Jimmy_Burch) January 5, 2013
Manziel once again stole the show, but ESPN's Dave Ubben points out that Landry Jones set a Cotton Bowl record for completions in a half.
Landry Jones: 23-30, 175 yards, TD, INT. Now holds Cotton Bowl record for first-half completions. Previous record: 15.— David Ubben (@davidubben) January 5, 2013
Former Buffalo Bill and Oklahoma State great Thurman Thomas weighed in on where he thinks Texas A&M and Oklahoma will be ranked next season.
Even phenomenal NFL talents recognize that Johnny Football has game. Arizona Cardinals star wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald offered praise for Manziel's fantastic performance.
Chris Huston of CBS Sports puts Manziel's remarkable numbers into context.
If Manziel gets 13 more passing yards and 2 more rushing yards, he'll join Marques Tuiasosopo as the only 300/200 player in a game.— Chris Huston (@HeismanPundit) January 5, 2013
The ever-consistent Ryan Swope became the most prolific receiver in Texas A&M history, according to Fox Sports.
College Football (@CFBONFOX) January 5, 2013
Player of the Game: Johnny Manziel
What can't this guy do?
For whatever reason, Heisman winners usually struggle in the bowl game that follows them winning the award. Not Johnny Football. He was as dominant as any one player can be.
Manziel was once again a terror for the opposition, demolishing Oklahoma's defense with his rare combination of agility, quickness and accuracy.
Whenever the opportunity presented itself, Manziel would dance his way through the Sooners defense using moves few college running backs possess. When OU bottled Manziel in the pocket, he made them pay with his arm.
Needless to say, Bob Stoops is happy the Aggies are no longer in the Big 12. Meanwhile, defensive coordinators of the SEC are likely to spend a lot of time trying to scheme against him this offseason.
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