Austin, TX – Joe Bergeron rushed for 110 yards and a pair of touchdowns on 15 carries, as No. 15 Texas downed Wyoming, 37-17, on Saturday at Darrell K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium.
Malcolm Brown added to the Longhorn ground attack with 105 yards on 14 carries and a touchdown, while D.J. Monroe chipped in 36 yards on five rushes and a score for Texas (1-0), which has won 13 straight season openers under the direction of coach Mack Brown.
David Ash completed 20-of-27 passes for 156 yards, including a 16-yard touchdown strike to Jaxon Shipley, who finished with seven catches for 45 yards, as Texas looks to rebound from an 8-5 record last season.
"I was just trying to move the chains and convert third downs," Ash said of his performance. "You want to get the ball in somebody's hands and let them get the first down for you."
Brett Smith went 16-of-28 for 276 yards, two touchdowns and a pair of interceptions after setting a new Mountain West Conference freshman record with 3,332 yards of total offense in 2011.
"He was great," Wyoming coach Dave Christensen said of his quarterback. "Tonight was the best we've ever thrown the football against one of the top defenses in the nation. I thought our protection was good and we played very physical."
Robert Herron hauled in five passes for 173 yards and both touchdowns for the Cowboys (0-1), who finished 8-5 a season ago.
Wyoming forced a quick three-and-out from the Longhorns before the Cowboys first drive of the season resulted in a 33-yard field goal from Stuart Williams.
Texas responded with an 11-play, 68-yard drive, highlighted by back-to-back big runs from Malcolm Brown to move the Longhorns inside the 10-yard line before Bergeron converted a 4th-and-goal from the 1-yard line to give Texas a 7-3 edge.
The Cowboys answered quickly as Smith connected with Herron, who broke free from a pair of Longhorn defenders and scampered 82 yards for a touchdown. The extra point was blocked however, leaving Wyoming with a 9-7 advantage.
Nick Jordan missed a 46-yard field goal on Texas' first possession of the second quarter, but the Longhorns got the ball right back as Kenny Vaccaro picked off Smith and returned it to Wyoming's 43-yard line.
Ash quickly took advantage, hitting Monroe for 15 yards before finding Shipley in the end zone four plays later to give the Longhorns a 14-9 lead.
Carrington Byndom then came up with an interception on Wyoming's next drive and Brown broke free for 31 yards two plays later.
Monroe then finished off the drive when he broke through the line on 3rd-and- goal and took it seven yards for the score to extend the lead to 21-9.
A 31-yard field goal from Jordan on their next position sent the Longhorns into the locker room with a 24-9 edge.
Texas converted three third downs on its first possession of the second half and then converted a 4th-and-goal from the 1-yard line when Brown capped a 17- play, 77-yard drive with a 1-yard surge to make it a 31-9 lead.
Smith found Herron for a 22-yard touchdown pass on the first play of the fourth quarter and then hit Dominic Rufran for the two-point conversion to cut the lead to 31-17.
Ash then fumbled on Texas' next play, but the Cowboys turned the ball over on downs when Smith failed to convert a 4th-and-2 from the Texas 9-yard line.
The Longhorns made Wyoming pay, as Bergeron rumbled 54 yards into Wyoming territory before capping the 6-play, 91-yard drive with a 17-yard touchdown run to seal the victory.
Texas has won all five of the meetings between these two teams ... Wyoming fell to Temple in the New Mexico Bowl last season ... Texas outrushed Wyoming 280-69 ... Rufran finished with three catches for 46 yards.