"It'll be mentioned as 2020 in a nutshell," he said.
The senior rallied the No. 8 Longhorns from a 56-41 deficit with just over 3 minutes remaining. He threw two touchdown passes and completed another pass for a two-point conversion at the end of regulation. Then he added one more TD pass in overtime to finish off the Red Raiders.
Ehlinger became the first player in Texas history with multiple five-touchdown games in a season, and just the second to do it in his career along with Colt McCoy. Texas coach Tom Herman, who started 2-0 for the first time with the Longhorns, said Ehlinger gave him a similar pep talk after SaRodorick Thompson's 75-yard touchdown run with 3:13 remaining put the Red Raiders (1-1, 0-1 Big 12) up 56-41.
"The running back for Texas Tech ran right down our sideline to seal the game, and our quarterback walks up to me and says, 'We're going to tie this thing up and go to overtime,'" said Herman, in his fourth season with the Longhorns. "And I believed him. As long as we've got that guy and there's a few ticks left, I think everybody on that sideline believes we have a shot to win it."
"That's the GOAT right there. That's the Tom Brady in college," defensive lineman Keondre Coburn said. "Just put it in his hand. When they scored that second touchdown [to go up 15] and then had to punt the ball, he came to me talking about, 'Get me one more stop, we're gonna win this game.'"
The Longhorns had lost their previous 39 games when trailing by 15 or more points, the longest active streak in the Big 12. The victory was Texas' biggest comeback since 2007.
"You know, great teams have a game or two like this," Herman said. "For us to find the intestinal fortitude to come out and not give up, not hang their head down 15, with 3 minutes and some change left, to find a way to win that thing? Hopefully, this humbles some guys out there that thought this was going to be easy, that every game was going to be like [Texas' 59-3 win over] UTEP. And I think that point was made very clear here tonight.
"We're not pleased with how we won," he said. "But we're pleased with the result."
With the lack of spring practice and a shortened fall camp, tackling was a problem for the Longhorns (2-0, 1-0). Herman said it felt at times like last season, when the Texas defense struggled and the Longhorns finished 8-5. Ehlinger, however, said it felt very much like a product of this strange season.
"You look around in college football in 2020 and there's some weird things going on," he said on a day when top-10 teams Oklahoma and LSU lost. "So we're just thankful to walk out of here with a win."