AUSTIN — For several years, Texas lacked a power back who could pound defenses into submission. Now the Longhorns seem to have them everywhere.
Freshman Joe Bergeron ran for 191 yards and scored three touchdowns Saturday, leading a 52-20 rout of Texas Tech that saw Texas rush for more than 400 yards for the second week in a row.
Bergeron scored on runs of 9, 5 and 12 yards and Fozzy Whittaker ran for Texas' first two touchdowns in the second quarter.
The Longhorns (6-2, 3-2 Big 12) are now bowl-eligible after missing the postseason last year for the first time since 1997.
"I told the guys let's not talk about six (wins) now," Texas coach Mack Brown. "Let's talk about 10."
Bergeron, who had never carried the ball more than 13 times in a game this season, had 29 against the Red Raiders because Texas held out leading rusher Malcolm Brown, another freshman, because of a sore toe.
Bergeron topped 100 yards for the second game in a row. His 191 yards Saturday marked the most by a Texas running back since Jamaal Charles had 290 against Nebraska in 2007.
"Nobody really has a (starting) job, we're just all in rotation. We're all getting the ball," Bergeron said. "My running style is just hammer them. After a while the defense will crack."
The Longhorns have put up huge rushing numbers the last two weeks against two of the worst defenses in the country — Kansas and Texas Tech. The Red Raiders came in ranked No. 114 against the run.
Texas was so dominant Saturday the Longhorns built a 31-6 lead by halftime despite running just 28 total plays in the first two quarters, 25 of them on the ground. Texas had the ball just 12 minutes of the first half.
"I like it," Mack Brown said. "We want people worrying about us being physical."
The Red Raiders (5-4, 2-4) suffered their second straight lopsided loss after their stunning upset of then-No. 3 Oklahoma two weeks ago that snapped the Sooners' 39-game home winning streak. Since that win in Norman, Texas Tech has been outscored 93-27 in losses to Texas and Iowa State.
"It's just another embarrassing loss," Texas Tech quarterback Seth Doege said. "This week, I felt like everybody was ready to play ... It felt like we could win this game.
Texas Tech came out against the Longhorns looking capable of another big road win. But the Red Raiders' first drive ended in a field goal after a touchdown was wiped out by a personal foul and the defense was helpless to stop Texas.
Texas scored on its first five drives and never punted while rolling up 595 total yards.
Doege passed for 381 yards and two late touchdowns, but was also sacked four times and hit several others by Texas' relentless pass rush.
Bergeron had 113 yards by halftime and Whittaker had scoring runs of 12 and 8 yards out of Texas' "wild" formation. D.J. Monroe dashed to the end zone from 12 yards, faking Texas Tech safety Jared Flannel so well that Flannel ran into cornerback Derrick Mays, taking both defenders out of the play.
"We have to find some way to get ourselves off the field and make somebody punt," Texas Tech coach Tommy Tuberville said. "It was lining up and coming right at us."
The Texas running game continues to protect freshman quarterback David Ash, who is still developing as a passer.
Ash attempted only seven passes in the game, and his only three of the first half came on play-action deep throws to Mike Davis. They connected twice for 72 yards and even when Ash missed a wide-open Davis early, he followed it up with a 47-yard option run on the next play to set up a touchdown.
Bergeron's first touchdown made it 31-6 at the end of the second quarter and Texas kept pounding the Texas Tech defense in the second half.
The Longhorns opened the third quarter with a 10-play drive that used just one pass in driving to Bergeron's second score, a 5-yard run off left tackle on fourth-and-1. Bergeron's third touchdown covered 12 yards early in the fourth quarter to make it 45-13.
Now the Longhorns can make some holiday plans for playing football. Last season, they spent December and early January watching all their biggest rivals play in bowl games on television.
"It's like a second season for us," Texas linebacker Keenan Robinson said. "From now on we're trying to see what bowl game we can get into."