Texas Longhorns’ History vs. AP Top 25 Shows Little Hope vs. Alabama

Texas Longhorns’ History vs. AP Top 25 Shows Little Hope vs. Alabama
Fact Checked by Thomas Leary

The Texas Longhorns are just on the outside looking in when it comes to the AP Top 25 College Football Poll after opening their season with a 52-10 thumping of UL Monroe in Week 1. (Unfortunately, there isn’t legal Texas sports betting to capitalize on the Longhorns currently.)

While there’s optimism in Austin after new quarterback Quinn Ewers threw for 225 yards and two touchdowns in the victory, Texas has a much more formidable opponent coming to DKR-Texas Memorial Stadium on Saturday: Nick Saban and the No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide.

While Texas head coach Steve Sarkisian is a Saban disciple, having served as an analyst and offensive coordinator at Alabama (2016, 2019-2020), recent history — and a double-digit point spread — doesn’t provide a sunny outlook for the Longhorns. And Ewers' dark horse Heisman Trophy candidacy won't sway oddsmakers.

BetTexas.com utilized ESPN’s box score to determine each of the AP Top 25 matchups that Texas has played since 2010, including the record and point total in those matchups. Bowl games were also included. 

Statistics of Texas Longhorns Football Since 2010 Season

Texas record vs. AP Top 25 teams since 201017-38
Texas record vs AP Top 5 teams since 20102-5
Texas' average margin of defeat in AP Top 25 matchups14.3

Recent History Tells Tale of the Tape

Texas has struggled over the past 12-plus seasons against  top 25 programs, registering just a 30.9% win percentage (17-38). 

Last season, Texas started 4-1 (which included a season-opening win over then-No. 23 Louisiana at Lafayette), but a six-game losing streak followed, with three consecutive to AP Top 25 teams (No. 6 Oklahoma, No. 12 Oklahoma State and No. 16 Baylor). The Longhorns ultimately finished 5-7, missing a bowl game appearance for the first time since 2016. 

Furthermore, Texas has won just twice in seven attempts against AP Top 5 teams since 2010. 

Alabama comes into town this weekend at No. 1, staying at the summit of college football after a 55-0 win over Utah State to begin the year. This will be the Longhorns’ first matchup against an AP Top 5 team since a 39-27 loss to Oklahoma in 2018. 

One problem? In 55 games against AP Top 25 teams since 201, Texas has been outscored by nearly 350 total points. 

The Longhorns were competitive in three losses to Top 25 teams last year, falling in one-score games to Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Baylor last October, though Texas was 0-3 against the spread in those contests. 

Since 2010, Texas has been outscored by over two touchdowns against AP Top 25 programs.

Saban a Rare Opponent

According to BetMGM Sportsbook, Alabama is a 20.5-point favorite against Texas on Saturday. The over-under is set at 65.5.

The good news? Texas is 7-1-1 lifetime against Alabama. 

The bad news? This is the first matchup between the two storied college football programs since the 2010 National Championship, which Alabama won, 37-21. 

Texas’ last victory against Alabama came long before Saban's run of dominance — in the 1981 Cotton Bowl. This is the first regular-season meeting between Alabama and Texas since 1922. 



Shelby Dermer has been a sports reporter for the Cincinnati Enquirer for the last five years and now lends his expertise to BetTexas.com. He grew up in Waynesville, Ohio and graduated from Ohio University.

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