The OU offense proved too much for the Big 12's top defensive unit as Oklahoma topped Kansas State 38-17 in Norman today.
Joe Mixon bounced back from a shaky start against Texas to rack up 88 yards on 19 carries and a receiving touchdown on the day. Mixon became OU's primary rusher when Samaje Perine left the game withe a knee injury in the first quarter.
The OU offense commanded the game early, getting Perine early touches and re-establishing Mark Andrews in the passing game. Andrews had a big bounce-back game after his shaky Texas performance, and finished the day with 4 receptions for 34 yards.
The real star in the OU receiving game, however, was Dede Westbrook again this week. Westbrook was the centerpiece of Lincoln Riley's second-quarter trick play, where Joe Mixon took a handoff and then fired downfield to hit Westbrook behind a totally unsuspecting K-State defense for a Sooners touchdown that put OU up 21-7.
Westbrook wasn't able to corral a long third-quarter pass from Mayfield, which likely would have been a touchdown if completed. On the day, though, he finished with 9 receptions for 184 yards and three touchdowns, and proved himself once again to be the biggest threat in the OU passing game.
Perhaps his brightest moment came in the fourth quarter, when he effectively sealed the game with an 88-yard touchdown grab that ended as the game's final score.
OU's defense struggled occasionally to get off the field against the mediocre K-State offense. The Wildcats starting quarterback, Jesse Ertz, left the game in the third quarter with an apparent arm injury and yielded to backup quarterback Joe Hubener, who had been used primarily in short-yardage situations so far this year.
Ertz finished the day 8-for-14 for 68 yards, but Hubener was more effective in the passing game and ended up throwing for 157 yards against the Sooners defense. Kansas State ended up edging Oklahoma by just over two minutes in time of possession during the game, keeping the ball for 30:59 compared to OU's 29:02. Much of that was due to long drives Kansas State put together in the second and third quarters.
OU started the scoring on its very first drive, alternating Perine runs with Westbrook passes and finally putting the ball in the end zone with a with a dramatic Perine dive after a 25-yard reception.
OU extended its lead to 14-0 later in the first quarter when Joe Mixon took a pitched pass from the K-State 8 yard line and hurdled a Wildcats defender to find the end zone.
The OU defense was unable to finish the game after the offensive delivered blows, allowing Kansas State to dink-and-dunk its way back into the contest. In the end, however, Kansas State was unable to hit the big plays that would have quickly leveled the score, and Oklahoma's offense proved consistently more explosive on the day.
Safety Steven Parker finished the day with eight tackles, leading the OU defense. Jordan Thomas had another solid day, finishing with seven tackles and three pass breakups. Thomas was burned on an early fourth-quarter 54-yard touchdown grab by Dominique Heath, but otherwise had another very good game.
The victory leaves OU at 4-2 on the year. The Sooners will return to action next Saturday when they travel to Lubbock to play the Red Raiders at 7 p.m. on FOX.