The Sooners hosted Bedlam on Saturday evening as they looked to win their sixth game of the season and become bowl eligible. Oklahoma was also looking to avoid a third straight loss, which has already happened once this year. On the other hand, Oklahoma State rolled into Norman having lost three out of their last four games.
Despite all odds, this game was played under the lights in prime time. Oklahoma took full advantage of their home field and got off to a quick start. Offensively the team came out with an urgency and an aggression that we just haven’t seen until this point of the season. And on the defensive side of the ball, they had Spencer Sanders in all kinds of trouble early on. The Cowboys struggled to find a rhythm on offense as they threw the ball seven straight times to start the game. The pressure that Oklahoma was bringing caused a few rushed throws that led to multiple interceptions.
Oklahoma managed to jump out to a 28-0 lead in the first quarter. They recorded the second most yards gained in a quarter in school history. It was obvious that Mike Gundy’s team would make some adjustments, but those adjustments were too little and too late. The game was essentially decided after the first quarter.
The Cowboys certainly didn’t go out without a fight. After kicking a field goal at the end of the first half the score was 28-3 heading into the break. They ended up scoring 13 straight to make it 28-13 in the fourth quarter. Things got pretty tense on the OU sideline for a bit, but the Sooners held on for a win without scoring for three quarters.
Where Has This Been?
There’s a lot of Oklahoma fans wondering where this has been all season. The aggressive play calling is something that has seemingly been missing during the last seven weeks or so. I’m certainly not complaining, it came at the perfect time. I do think it goes to show that this team is capable of playing much better than they have.
The Sooners have been victims of slow starts far too many times this season. It was nice to see them flip the script and come out ready to play. Although the flashy offense went away and it wasn’t pretty in the end, it was nice to see this team grind out a win. I guess the quick start meant they had to have a slow finish.
The defensive side of the ball has been arguably the biggest struggle for this team. But, the defense won this game for Oklahoma. The interceptions by the defense and the early scores from the offense complimented each other perfectly. It was the first time we’ve seen this team put together a complete quarter. But after that, it was all on the defense. They got absolutely no help from the offense for the remainder of the game.
The best part of this performance was the overall effort from the Sooners defense. The effort never stopped even when they got punched in the mouth with a big play. In many of the losses this season we have seen the defensive unit completely fold after giving up a big play. Not to mention the amount of reps they had to play. They were on the field for 37 minutes and 38 seconds of game time, and kept the energy up the entire time.
You Have To Finish
Oklahoma had so many opportunities to put this game away. Even in the first quarter there was a three and out by the Sooners after getting a turnover on defense, and then there was the Brayden Willis fumble as well. Even if OU scores on just one of those drives the 35 points would have been a huge difference maker.
When you have a four score lead heading into the second half you really just need one more score to finish the game. The Sooners could not seem to get that one more score. In my opinion it was a combination of poor execution as well as passive play calling. In the end it was the Oklahoma defense that came up with a fourth interception, and two more stops in the last five minutes to seal the deal. A win is a win, and perhaps this will be the win the team needs to finish out the season on a high note.
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