Idaho State's offense left a lot to be desired last Saturday night in the desert. The Bengals only mustered 3 points and 37 total net yards. Even more alarming for Idaho State is that the Bengals only managed four first downs for the entire game (one of which came by penalty), they were 1-13 on third downs and averaged just 0.8 yards per offensive snap. They'll be going up against an Oklahoma defense that appeared dominant at times against BYU and then had moments where we wanted to scream, "What the heck were you thinking!" at them.
Idaho State Passing Game vs. OU Secondary
|QB Kyle Blum 6-2/197 (3-10/10 YRDS/3 INTs)
WR Jaron Taylor 5-11/178 (3/25 YRDS)
|WR Isaiah Burel 6-2/183 (1/4 YRDS)||TE Josh Hill 6-5/227
||WR JD Ponciano 5-9/183 (1/1 YRD)|
|CB Brian Jackson 6-1/200 (3 TKLS)
6-0/192 (3 TKLS)|
|FS Quinton Carter 6-1/193 (10 TKLS)
||SS Sam Proctor 6-0/208 (4 TKLS)
Starting quarterback Kyle Blum had an interesting week this week. Last Saturday night he threw three first half interceptions before getting yanked at the half. He was replaced by Russel Hill who did somewhat better in the second half. Hill was then named the starter for the Oklahoma game before suffering an injury in practice on Thursday which moved Blum back to the starting position.
Receiver Jaron Taylor was third on the team in receptions last year and was the only member of the receiving corps to haul in more than one pass. The only other player to do that was running back Clint Knickrehm who had 3 catches for 24 yards. If Blum struggles again the only other Idaho State option is sophomore Evan Mozzochi who has never taken a college football snap.
Dominique Franks was caught out of position a few times last week against BYU and the safeties blew it on the go ahead touchdown pass in addition to a few other non-superstar moments. Assignment football is what we are looking for from this bunch and this is a great opportunity to get in the habit of not blowing the aforementioned assignments.
Idaho State Running Backs vs. OU Linebackers
RB Clint Knickrehm 5-11/214
|FB Bryant Ward 6-2/228|
SLB Keenan Clayton 6-1/221
(4 TKLS/1 INT)
(10 TKLS/1 INT)
WLB Travis Lewis 6-2/232
Oklahoma's linebackers were every where Saturday night and made plays all over the field. This group is athletic and fast. They fly to the ball and are sure tacklers. Oklahoma held BYU to just 33 yards rushing and just 0.8 yards per attempt. Against Arizona State last Saturday night the Bengals ran for -5 yards on 27 attempts. A big chunk of ISU's rushing yards were taken away on a bad snap that sailed over the quarterback's head but even with that the backs still struggled to move the ball down the field.
Idaho State Offensive Line vs. OU Defensive Line
|T Braeden Clayson 6-6/301
||G Lance Cartwright 6-6/295||C Ryan Henry 6-2/283||G Mitch Rudder 6-3/300||T Brad Shedd 6-7/274|
|DE Jeremy Beal 6-2/261 (2 TKLS)
||DT Adrain Taylor 6-4/291 (1 TKL/1 SK)
||DT Gerald McCoy 6-4/297 (5 TKLS)
||DE Auston English 6-3/251 (3 TKLS/1 SK)
This is where the Sooners have the biggest advantage in the contest. The Bengals average 6-5/291 across the line compared to Oklahoma's defensive line that averages 6-4/275. Oklahoma's speed is where the advantage should come from. Gerald McCoy lived behind the BYU offensive line last week making four tackles for loss.
Dominance And New Faces - What To Expect
I've been overly pessimistic about Oklahoma's offense but remain hopelessly optimistic about the defense. If the Bengals couldn't shake blocks against Arizona State you've got to feel they'll struggle against OU. However, once the game is under control I would also expect to see a lot of fresh faces to both give the backups some depth and to try to avoid injuries to the starters.