AUSTIN, Texas — The Big 12 Conference championship is still solidly in reach for No. 12-ranked Oklahoma State, which showed Saturday just what No. 4 Baylor will be up against next week.
Quarterback Clint Chelf ran for two touchdowns and threw for two, and the Cowboys beat No. 23 Texas, 38-13, to hand Coach Mack Brown his worst home loss in 16 seasons.
The Cowboys (9-1 overall, 6-1 in Big 12) won in Austin for the third consecutive time. They have won six games in a row since stumbling against West Virginia and keep looking like the Big 12 contenders they were predicted to be before the start of the season.
"We understand how big the game is. I'm not sure if at times everybody wants to say that that's a heck of a win, but it is what it is," Coach Mike Gundy said. "You very seldom go on the road and win by more than three touchdowns with teams that are undefeated in conference play in the middle of November."
The Longhorns (7-3, 6-1) had won six games in a row and had returned to the top 25 after a two-month absence.
Texas and Oklahoma State still have to face undefeated No. 4 Baylor. The Cowboys will play host to the Bears on Saturday.
Chelf threw for 197 yards and had one pass intercepted. He was Oklahoma State's leading rusher with 95 yards that were largely piled up with long sprints from the shotgun alignment.
Texas running back Malcolm Brown had 79 yards and a touchdown.
The Longhorns' previous worst loss at home under Brown was 34-12 against UCLA in 2010. The Longhorns have been blown out at home twice this season, losing, 44-23, to Mississippi in September.
Brown bemoaned missed chances against Oklahoma State and said the Longhorns offense "didn't do anything" after the first drive of the second half. Yet, he still tried to look ahead and didn't write off the season.
"They're disappointed but they know their goals are still in place. They just don't control their own destiny," Brown said.
A close first half turned into a runaway behind two near-misses by Texas in a span of less than a minute. First was safety Adrian Phillips missing a would-be interception in the end zone, with the ball ricocheting off his hands and into the arms of Tracy Moore for an Oklahoma State touchdown.
Even more deflating for the Longhorns was their ensuing drive, when safety Justin Gilbert picked off a pass by Case McCoy only 18 seconds before halftime and returned it 43 yards for a touchdown.
McCoy finished 26 for 39 for 221 yards and with three interceptions. Linebacker Caleb Lavey picked off one of McCoy's passes and returned it to the Texas 21 to set up a touchdown pass from Chelf to Charlie Moore on the next play. Moore finished with six receptions for 83 yards.
"It's really exciting to know that we still have a chance. We're still behind Baylor, which is a great team. We'll definitely get started preparing for them tomorrow," Lavey said.
Brown began the season talking about Texas being ready to compete for a national title again after a run of uneven seasons since losing to Alabama In the title game in 2009. But the Longhorns started by losing badly to Brigham Young on the road and getting blown out at home by Mississippi.
Speculation about Brown's future intensified after revelations that the agent of Alabama Coach Nick Saban had talked to University of Texas regents a few days after the Crimson Tide won the national championship last season.