The Oklahoma Sooners are one more win away from punching their ticket to the Big 12 championship game. Standing in their way is Gary Patterson and the TCU Horned Frogs. A win on Saturday night would not only mark OU’s third Big 12 title game appearance in the three years since the championship game was reinstated but also the 400th all-time win at Oklahoma Memorial Stadium.
Here are ten thing you’ll want to know about Saturday night’s game.
10. Clash Of The Titans
Saturday’s game will feature the Big 12’s top offense against its top defense in terms of yards per game. Oklahoma leads the nation with its 581.1 yards of offense per outing, while TCU paces the league and ranks 26th nationally by allowing just 328.8 yards per contest.
9. Series History
Oklahoma holds a 14-5 series lead over TCU. The Horned Frogs are 3-5 against the Sooners in Norman, 2-7 in Fort Worth, 0-1 in Oklahoma City and 0-1 in Arlington (2017 Big 12 Championship Game). The first game in the series was a 34-19 Sooners’ victory in Oklahoma City in 1944.
8. This Is The Guy The Media Tabbed As Second-Team All-Big 12
Jalen Hurts has recorded five passing efficiency ratings of at least 245.0 this year and is the only FBS player since at least 1996 to record more than three such outings (min. 15 attempts) in a season. He ranks first nationally with his 209.1 season pass efficiency rating and owns five of the nation’s top 24 figures this year (national-best 308.5 vs. West Virginia, 253.6 vs. South Dakota, 251.3 vs. Houston, 249.0 vs. Texas Tech and 245.9 at UCLA). Hurts also averages 98.3 rushing yards per contest and ranks ninth in the country by averaging 6.5 yards per carry. His 402.2 yards of total offense per game are more than 64 FBS teams and 32 Power Five squads average.
7. Familiar Faces
TCU co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Sonny Cumbie and Oklahoma head coach Lincoln Riley were teammates during the spring and summer of 2003 at Texas Tech. Riley was then a student coach during Cumbie’s final two seasons (2003-04) as a player for the Red Raiders.
TCU outside receivers coach Malcolm Kelly was a two-time first-team All-Big 12 selection and a 2005 Freshman All-American at Oklahoma. He totaled 144 receptions for 2,285 yards and 21 touchdowns in just three seasons.
6. But Will We See Him On The Field?
Junior receiver CeeDee Lamb has gained at least 135 receiving yards five times this season (135, 144, 167, 171 and 185), including in four of his last five games. Over his last four contests (he missed last game vs. Baylor due to a medical issue) he is averaging 136.0 receiving yards and has scored six touchdowns. On the season, Lamb is tied for second nationally in TD receptions (13) while ranking fourth in yards per catch (22.3) and ninth in receiving yards per game (109.2). Making his TD and yards-per-game numbers even more impressive is the fact that he ranks 75th nationally with just 4.9 catches per game.
5. Keeping Good Company
TCU is one of just six programs nationally to finish in the top 10 of the final polls at least three times (2014, 2015, 2017) in the last five seasons. The others are Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, Ohio State and Oklahoma.
4. How Was He Not The Starter At The Beginning Of The Season?
Lou Groza Award semifinalist Gabe Brkich is one of five placekickers nationally who have made all of their field goal attempts this season and is one of just two who have made all of their field goal AND extra point tries (the other is Wake Forest’s Nick Sciba). The redshirt freshman, who didn’t take over OU’s placekicking duties until the season’s fourth game (vs. Texas Tech), is 12 for 12 on field goals and 37 for 37 on PATs. His streak of 12 made field goals is the longest in school history at the start of a career, and the longest ever by an OU freshman.
3. Keep An Eye On #30
TCU linebacker Garret Wallow ranks second in the Big 12 and is tied for 15th nationally with his team-best 97 tackles, including 13.0 for loss.
2. Home Field Advantage
Oklahoma has won two more Big 12 championships over the last 20 years (12) than it has lost home games. OU is 118-10 (.922) at Oklahoma Memorial Stadium since the start of the 1999 season, with all 128 of those games sellouts.
1. Championship November
Oklahoma has won 19 straight November games (last loss on Nov. 8, 2014, vs. Baylor) and 22 of its last 23. Since the start of the 2000 season, it is 63-11 (.851) in the month.
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