After facing Houston’s D’Eriq King in the season opener, debuting the new speed defense a new quarterback, and living up to a Top 4 ranking, Oklahoma faces zero pressure in Week Two as they host FCS South Dakota.
The Sooners out-match the Coyotes in every aspect and the expectation firmly should be to see the bench clear as backups take over after the half. That’s not lofty, not arrogant, or brash, it’s just the reality of the situation. For Oklahoma to do what they say they want to do this season, they must completely dominate this game.
That said Oklahoma needs to play clean on Saturday, eliminating penalties and not missing assignments. Here are a few players to keep an eye on each side of the ball.
Kennedy Brooks and Trey Sermon
After taking a backseat to Jalen Hurts’ last week in the opener I would expect to see the workload of the running backs increase this week. Sermon ran for 91 yards on 11 carries while Brooks went for 46 yards on just four touches.
South Dakota held Montana to just 80 total rushing yards, on 28 carries, last week in the opener but the Brooks/Sermon rushing attack shouldn’t have any problems getting going Saturday night.
Erik Swenson and R.J. Proctor
Proctor was listed as the backup at left guard last week before ultimately drawing the start at left tackle due to a banged up Erik Swenson. This week’s depth chart has Swenson as the starter once again with Proctor as the #2 at both the left tackle and guard spots.
If we’re going to be critical of an aspect of Oklahoma’s offense last week it would be the left side of the offensive line. All eyes will be on the left side this week as Bill Bedenbaugh looks to shore things up.
Tre Brown and Parnell Motley
South Dakota’s Kody Case caught 11 passes last week for 144 yards and a score. Whoever draws the assignment in covering him Saturday night will have a challenge. I’m thinking that Coyotes’ quarterback Austin Simmons won’t have a lot of time in the pocket but whoever is on Case can’t afford to lose focus.
Sutherland was 0-2 in field goal attempts last week, missing from 49 yards in the first quarter and 36 yards as time expired in the second quarter. Lincoln Riley doesn’t seem to be panicked by the misses but Sooner Nation sure does.
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