After an impressive scoring drive to close out the first half, the Sooners are set to receive as the second half gets underway.
You know where we stand. Gut-punch type drive for OU to close out the first half, Sooners lead 14-6 and will receive to start the second half.
* Two things - (1) In this piece last week I was very critical of the OU receivers and their blocking out on the edge, both on run plays and screen passes. There has been a noticeable improvement in this game. (2) I think the thing that stands out the most about Brennan Clay's performance in this game so far is just how well he's setting up his runs. What I mean by that is, he has the most subtle of moves where he shifts his upper body as if to feign he's going one direction, then immediately cuts back in the opposite direction. It's made defenders miss on a number of occasions already and certainly wasn't something I truly appreciated until going back and watching the game again. Like I said, it's subtle but when you're going full speed sometimes that's all you need.
* Just a couple plays in and Clay makes another really nice run on 2nd & 10 and the refs come up with yet another atrocious spot on the play. Looks like they put it a full yard behind where Clay and the ball finished the play. Then they do it again on literally the very next play when Bell sneaks it and is laying on the yellow line (on tv) and spot it several feet short of the first down.
I'm going to resist the overwhelming urge I have to go on the most epic of rants here, but it was also at this point in the game where the Supreme Leader of All Douches, Ed Cunningham, goes on and on about all the things OU is doing wrong with the Belldozer. Listening to it again only reinforces just how asinine his comments actually were. At one point he suggests the Sooners should leave Landry Jones in and simply bring in "a bigger back" to run for the first down. Oh really, Ed? Well, please educate me who that back would be. Because last time I checked, the OU roster isn't exactly riddled with 260 pound running backs. Also, by this genius' estimation the Belldozer package "isn't built for short yardage situations, it's more like a 2nd & 7 kind of formation." My word, what a moron!
Sorry, I just couldn't help myself. But believe me I could go on. Like go on for another 5,000 words, but I'll spare you all.
* So they call Aaron Colvin barely grazing a guy in the first half, but here when Jalen Saunders basically gets tackled on a fade route in the end zone they keep the flag in their pocket? Riiiiiiiiiiight. Good work, fellas.
* 3rd Q, 8:57 - 3rd & 9 for OU from the ISU 20. Sometimes you just need a little bit of luck. This isn't a particularly great throw from Landry for the touchdown, but somehow it winds up finding its intended target. It's actually well defended by the ISU corner, who is in position to get his head around at the last second and bat the ball. However, he just nicks it and it winds up falling into the waiting arms of Justin Brown for the touchdown. Lucky bounce but we'll take it. Credit to Brown for maintaining his concentration and making the catch after the deflection. 21-6 OU
* This certainly isn't a new development, but I don't know that I've ever expressed my appreciation for it so I'll do so now. Big fan of Frank Shannon and Aaron Franklin come on the field at linebacker in obvious passing situations. It's something that never would have happened if Brent Venables were still the defensive coordinator, so full credit to Mike Stoops for recognizing and then doing what needed to be done.
* Not to pile on, but I really wouldn't want to be Gabe Lynn when they review the film of this game. I envision actual smoke coming out of Mike Stoops' ears.
* 3rd Q, 5:59 - 1st & 10 ISU from the OU 19. This touchdown run on the reverse is just a really good play call. Granted, it's not defended very well on the part of Oklahoma but that's not meant to take anything away from a great call and quality run by the ISU receiver.
Chuka Ndulue has the backside contain and, well basically he doesn't contain. He gets caught up in the action of the play and is completely out of position once the play comes back in his direction. Lynn comes all the way across the field to try and make a play before the ISU receiver launches himself into the end zone, but he couldn't quite get there in time. Maybe it scores even if Ndulue stays home on play, but his lack of discipline made it all the easier. 21-13 OU
* Clay is running hard. That is all.
* 3rd Q, 3:07 - 3rd & 1 for OU from the ISU 31. Guaranteed spot for Blake Bell here and yet he remains on the sideline. It's interesting not because OU fails to get the first down (they don't as Clay runs over a defender easily picking up the necessary yards), but because Josh Heupel looks to be a little gun-shy in putting Bell back out there after the Cyclones have defended it well thus far.
* 3rd Q, 2:14 - 1st & 10 OU from the ISU 18. Just a fantastic run here from Brennan Clay for the touchdown. Oklahoma in the diamond formation once again with Trey Millard to Jones' left and Aaron Ripkowski to his right. At the snap, Millard releases to the second level while Ripkowski pulls to his left serving as Clay's lead blocker. Ripkowski destroys the ISU linebacker looking to make the play and Clay is quickly into the second level. Where Millard has locked onto his man and Kenny Stills doing an excellent job as well with the downfield block. As the play continues, Clay actually wounds up being surrounded by three defenders just as he's making his cut back to the inside. He runs hard through two arm tackles just before he sprints into the end zone. Beautifully executed play there on so many levels. 28-13 OU
* Is it even worth me mentioning how badly Tom Wort is beaten attempting to cover a running back out of the backfield? I'm not sure I can offer anything original at this point. He just bites so hard on the tiniest of moves, it's just . . . Let's just move on.
* Man, they put up a graphic in this game just before they come back with 1:01 in the game that I totally don't remember seeing. Basically it's a graphic of the FBS all-time passing leaders of which Landry Jones is now fifth. And if this isn't a who's who of your prototypical, textbook, "system quarterbacks" I don't know what is. It's not like this is new information to me, but to see it up there on the screen it's just like screaming in your face what this OU offense has become and I HATE IT.
* 3rd Q, 0:54 - 2nd & 10 for OU from their 20. This will be a quick one. This throw to from Jones to Sterling Shepard is a throw you really only see on Sundays. It's also why Jones is maddening to watch as a quarterback because he can make plays like this and then look so bad just one snap later. This ball is on a freaking rope and perfectly placed just out of the reach of a diving ISU defender. Seriously, I cannot put into words how pretty that throw was.
* Pretty obvious as the third quarter comes to a close here that Oklahoma is just wearing down a good Iowa State defense. These six and seven yard runs from Clay were probably three or four yards in the first half. I hope you're taking notes, Josh. This is how football works.
End of the 3rd Quarter, OU leads 28-13.
* Can't help but find it humorous just how certain these idiot announcers were that Tress Way's punt hit the goal line. On the replay, you can see the shadow of the ball on the goal line which by my amateur scientific mind tells me the ball cannot possibly be on the goal line, right? Regardless, there is no definitive angle which shows it otherwise but why let something like facts or actual visual evidence get in the way of sounding like a dumba#$ on national television.
* I need someone to help me understand something. How does it make any sense, as a cornerback, to line up with a 10-yard cushion, then as the ball is snapped immediately start into your back pedal? You're not far enough off already? You really need to start backing even further off? This makes no sense to me.
* There is no confusion on Jones' second touchdown throw to Stills here early in the fourth quarter. This back shoulder throw is exactly how they draw it up. Perfect throw from Jones allowing Stills to adjust before the defender can and he makes the easy catch in the front corner of the end zone. That, my friends, was pretty. 35-13 OU
* Fairly certain they don't keep stats on this, but I'm almost positive there isn't another team in the country who has missed more sacks where it looked as if a sack was all but assured only to see the opposing quarterback find a way out of it.
* 4th Q, 9:09 - 2nd & 3 for ISU from the OU 45. Nothing happens here on a harmless incompletion, but I had to take a second to single out Jordan Phillips. Nothing fancy here, he just comes on the straight bull rush and drives his man back seven yards into the quarterback. Brute strength and that, hopefully, is the next great and dominant Oklahoma defensive tackle.
* The blatant holding being done by the Iowa State offensive line right now is borderline criminal. Evidently, these Big 12 officials had an early flight they needed to catch.
* Put another one in the "almost sack" column, but Tony Jefferson is there to save the day with an absolute kill shot to separate man from ball. I literally rewound it at least ten times just to watch it. Thing of beauty.
* I imagine Mike Stoops is slightly more perturbed than myself with this garbage time Iowa State touchdown. OU 35-20
* You learn something new every day, right? I learned on Saturday that a "perfectly executed" onsides kick involves the kicking team not recovering it. Funny, I could have sworn it was the opposite. Thank you for the correction, Ed Cunningham.
* A fifteen point lead with 5:50 remaining in the fourth quarter seems like a pretty good opportunity to get your backup quarterback, who is in desperate need of some meaningful in-game snaps before presumably taking over next year, some work, right? Anyone?
* I'm not going to get into the Landry Jones slide because what can you really say. I will however address the Iowa State defender who hits him well after he's given himself up on the play and near the tail end of his slide. The guys makes zero effort to ease up on the play. I mean if that's not penalty worthy then I simply do not know the game of football.
* Just minutes later they call not one, but two penalties on Aaron Colvin on the same play. I'd laugh but having watched Big 12 officials these for the last decade you really can't do anything but shrug and move on. The fact this kind of piss poor officiating is tolerated is mind baffling. Always has been, always will be.
* Welp, it only took all day but the Steele Jantz we'd been waiting all day for finally made an appearance at the 3:27 mark of the fourth quarter. Not really under a great deal of pressure, though Lynn is coming on a delayed blitz (dumbest thing ever, btw), but Jantz still just throws this one up for grabs. Happy it was Tony Jefferson there to bring it in after the game he had. He earned that one even if it was a gimmie.
* I'm not sure what the deal is with Gabe Ikard in these last two games, but these botched snaps need to stop ASAFP.
* Trey Metoyer decleater? Trey Metoyer decleater!!!
* I know at least one of our readers pointed it out in the game thread so my apologies for not giving proper credit, but a really heady move by Brennan Clay here late to stay in bounds on his runs.
* Watched the Stoops/Rhoads supposed confrontation following the postgame handshake and I'm absolutely convinced this was an Internet creation. Nothing happened. The picture that was floating around online by myself and many others looks to be very misleading as I watch it again. The security guy who had his arm on Rhoads was simply trying to prevent him from walking into the camera man that was right in front of him. Much ado about nothing as far as I'm concerned.
Anyway, that's a wrap for this one. Good road win for Oklahoma as they move on next week to take on Baylor in Norman.