Matthew Emmons-US PRESSWIRE
Dissecting the Sooners blowout victory over the Kansas Jayhawks.
This one may go quickly this week since (1) I'm not sure how many of you out there are really interested in going through this one a second time and (2) I'm not sure just how much can really be gleaned from this game. Be that as it may, this is what we do here so let's get started.
* Michael Hunnicutt with the opening kickoff and I only bring this up because at some point a guy named Nick Hodgson comes in to handle at least a couple kickoffs. I had never heard of Nick Hodgson prior to last night. This would also mark the second consecutive game Patrick O'Hara has not handled kickoffs. If you know what's going on here, please share with the rest of the class.
* Didn't really come out of this game feeling as if the Oklahoma defense tackled all that well. These first couple plays and Mike Stoops' comments after the game validate that feeling.
* If I was a KU fan, I'd be excited about Michael Cummings. Admittedly, as a KU football fan you're searching for even the tiniest glimmer of hope but Cummings definitely has talent.
* 1st Q, 12:11 - 3rd & 7 KU from their own 22. R.J. Washington just destroys the left tackle with an inside swim move, but Cummings easily escapes the rush to his left and finds a receiver for a first down.
* Never going to complain when the offense gets Damien Williams involved in the pass game, out of the backfield, and in space. Which is something I expect to see plenty of next week against Notre Dame by the way.
* 1st Q, 8:33 - 1st & 10 OU from the KU 25. I guess there is such a thing as being too wide open, because Trey Milard just dropped what would have been one of the easiest touchdown catches in his life. On the play, I'm not sure I've ever seen a defense bite as hard on a play fake as the KU defense does here. Unfortunately, the drive stalls and the Sooners have to settle for a field goal. 3-0 OU
* For all their issues, you can definitely see a difference in the little fundamental things on offense. They block very well in the run game.
* 1st Q, 4:30 - 2nd & 5 OU from their own 18. Really nice throw from Landry here as he's rolling out to his right. KU brings a corner blitz from Jones' left and off the play fake, Damien Williams gets a little too far upfield to come back and pick up the block on said blitzing corner. Which forces Jones to roll out to his right and make a perfect touch throw, on the move, just over a KU defender into the waiting arms of Jalen Saunders. Saunders wastes no time and immediately turns up field for a 28-yard gain.
* 1st Q, 3:58 - 1st & 10 OU from the KU 44. You simply cannot throw a better deep ball than the one Landry throws here. Off some token play-action, Jones is given an absolutely perfect pocket by his offensive line from which to throw. He sets his feet and launches the ball downfield with just the right amount of air under the ball.
Seriously, my words cannot even begin to do it justice. Jones hits Stills right in stride against what is actually quality coverage. Which is what makes this throw all the more impressive. On the replay, you can see just how close the KU defender was to Stills and how perfectly Jones placed the ball. Very, very impressive right there. 10-0 OU
* This Sims/Pierson duo at running back for KU is quality.
* Good lord can Tony Jefferson bring the wood. Can I just say that I really, really, really, really want him to come back next year.
* I'm sure you were like me in being stunned by Justin Brown dropping that punt return late in the first quarter. He had been virtually flawless in the return game up until that point, I never even considered him dropping one until then. As we know, he redeems himself quite nicely as does the OU defense here with there backs to their own goal line.
* After a gift on first down, only preventing a touchdown as a result of a poor throw from Crist, and an incompletion on second down, KU is looking at a 3rd & 11 as Crist comes back into the game.
Chuka Ndulue with a fantastic edge rush here, first beating the right tackle, then fighting through a double team as the right guard comes over to try and help. He gets a hand on Crist and forces him to roll to his right. Tom Wort, who looks to be spying Crist on the play (for some reason) makes a solid early read and immediately closes once he recognizes the KU quarterback in trouble. In fact, he closes the gap so quickly that Crist only has a split second once he's away from Ndulue before Wort is bearing down on him.
And does Wort ever deliver the kill shot here. He forces the fumble and Casey Walker scoops it up looking to return it the other way and big fella has got a convoy. Alas, the end zone is not to be but it's a big return and a massive momentum swing. Get my man some oxygen!
End of the 1st Quarter, still 10-0 OU
* 2nd Q, 12:33 - 2nd & goal OU from the KU 1. Belldozer over the right side and he walks in untouched. The Millard lead block on this play though, I mean wow. He just destroys the KU linebacker, meeting him in the hole and driving him at least a couple yards backwards then flat on his back. I rewound my DVR like six more times just to watch that block over again, it was that good. Oh, and it's 17-0 OU now also.
* 2nd Q, 10:27 - The first touchdown return. I'm quite certain I am just one of many who has been saying it, so feel free to join me in a congratulatory patting of our collective backs in saying it was just a matter of time before Justin Brown took one to the house. I've been asking teams every week, "Just give him one chance. That's all he needs." and Texas tried to be that team last week, but KU came through on Saturday. Actually, when you consider how much he weaved all over the place, it's a credit not just to him for a great return but by all the other guys out there blocking and not getting a penalty. 24-0 OU
* Javon Harris just really in the right place at the right time on his first interception. Solid pressure up the middle from Frank Shannon on the blitz and Cummings just kind of throws it up for grabs.
* I still didn't see an angle where the ball definitively hit the ground on that long (but horribly underthrown) pass to Stills that got overturned, but there is no way you can convince me OU didn't get the play off to make the review irrelevant to begin with. OU is literally completing the following play before the refs blow their whistle to go the the review.
* 2nd Q, 7:32 - 3rd & 10 OU from the KU 47. Another NFL throw from Landry here, hitting Sterling Shepard in stride down the sideline for a big gain. Great throw.
* 2nd Q, 5:16 - 2nd & goal OU from the KU 5. No one is saying we're not all big fans of Blake Bell, but it's nice to let the normal offense punch it in here (and wish it was something Heupel did more often to be frank). Superb blocking up front from all three interior offensive linemen and an nice little cutback run from Williams to find the end zone. 31-0 OU
* 2nd Q, 2:25 - 1st & 10 OU from their own 24. Really nice 41-yard run here from Brennan Clay, who seems to be running with a confidence we'd yet to see from him prior to this season. Here, he makes a quick decision to cut this run back up inside once the crease opens and impressively plants his foot into the ground to make one cut and get upfield. Nice burst from him in the open field as well.
* You know Brown wants that dropped touchdown pass back. Of course, Sterling Shepard won't be upset about it as he is the benefactor on the very next play with his second TD catch on the year. 38-0 OU
Second half will post later today.