Going into last season's Oklahoma/Baylor game the Sooners were a perfect 20-0 against the Bears. That all changed on the heroics of Robert Griffin III, who threw a late touchdown to score Baylor, everything changed. The Bears were no longer an automatic win for OU and the program gained notoriety for the first time in decades. Senior quarterback Nick Florence says that gives them confidence coming into Norman on Saturday. However, he also threw out a disclaimer that both teams are different this season.
"We absolutely have confidence from last year. We beat them last year and it's a good deal and we will feed off of that, but at the same time it's a totally different year and we are a totally different team and they are a totally different team. So yeah we beat them last year, that's great, but it's a new year, it's a new time and let's write a new chapter this year."
Things have changed since the two meetings met last fall. Even though RD3 has moved on to the NFL the Bears are still dangerous offensively, marked by their #1 ranking in the nation in passing offense. However, Oklahoma's defense has improved vastly, ranking 17th in scoring (17.8 PPG) and leading the Big 12 in passing defense (170 YPG). The Sooners have only allowed three passing touchdowns this season, while nabbing nine interceptions. Art Briles knows that he has his work cut out for him.
"They are good," Briles said, in regards to Oklahoma's defense. "They didn't wake up and just get good today; they have been good for a long time. They are very physical, very talented, and they are schemed up very well."
That said, this game will be determined by how well Baylor defends Oklahoma's offense. That's an advantage that certainly favors Oklahoma. The Sooners are 15th in the nation in scoring offense (39.5 PPG) and the Bears are 117th in the nation in scoring defense (39.1 PPG).
The Sooners are passing for an average of 313.6 points and almost two touchdowns per game. Defending Oklahoma's offense starts with Landry Jones, who Briles had high praise for as well.
"Landry is tall, has a great arm, and works under a great system. He is a three-year starter and has won more games then anyone else in OU history. They are a rhythm team and they allow him to get the ball out of his hand very quickly. He is an exceptional quarterback, and it is kind of surprising that he stayed for this season."
Baylor beat Kansas last weekend, 41-14, for their first conference win of the season and although they're coming to Norman with an overall .500 record, don't let that fool you into believing that they don't feel like they have a puncher's chance.