As the weekend edges closer, the Oklahoma Sooners recognize the challenge presented by the Texas Tech Red Raiders. On Monday, Zack Sanchez likened the opposing offense to "LeBron or KD" stating, "You're not going to shut them down, but you've got to do your best to slow ‘em down and eliminate big plays." Can the secondary find success against a program averaging 426.9 yards per game through the air?
Pressure In The Backfield
It all starts up front with the Oklahoma defensive front, a group with experience alongside talent. Disrupting the timing and confidence of Patrick Mahomes becomes of utmost importance on Saturday. Through six games of the season, Mike Stoops displayed an array of blitz packages utilizing top pass rusher, Eric Striker. Placing pressure on different points of the opposing offensive line, the Sooners have produced twenty sacks for 3.3 per game. With Devonte Bond returning to action, OU must once again find their way into the backfield whilst eliminating passing lanes on a consistent basis.
Bump & Run Coverage
Since giving up 427 passing yards to Dane Evans of the Tulsa Golden Hurricane, the secondary has limited opponents to 91 yards per game through the air. However, Jordan Thomas shouldn't be asked to give the receiver a seven to ten yard cushion on every snap. Coaches remain well aware of the Baylor Bears tactic last season playing witness to Bryce Petty completing numerous short passes and marching down the field. Again, it's all about timing and bump and run coverage disrupts that aspect of the game.
Without a sure tackling technique, those typical three or four yard gains quickly turns into forty plus. The Sooners cannot allow the Red Raiders to slip through tackles as the potential for building an early lead increases. On this upcoming Saturday, like every other weekend, limiting big plays remains a priority.