The Oklahoma Sooners carry a 17-game conference win streak into Saturday’s clash against the Iowa State Cyclones, a program OU looks to defeat for the 19th straight time. By now, we’ve all (hopefully) forgotten all about the Baylor near-fiasco and after a bye week, I’m sure you’re all just as pumped as I am to get the Sooners’ season back underway!
TV: Fox at 11:00 A.M. CT
Live Stream: FoxSportsGo
Here are just a few things on my mind before kickoff.
- Jacob Park Out
Well, after rumors were swirling on Friday, the news coming out of Ames is official: Cyclones’ starting quarterback Jacob Park is out for today’s ballgame.
We can confirm, via a few different sources, that Jacob Park did not make the trip to Norman.— WRNL (@WideRtNattyLt) October 6, 2017
From what is being reported, head coach Matt Campbell has stated that despite rumors, Park has not been suspended. Rather, the junior signal caller is taking a leave from the team to address “some personal medical concerns”.
Coming off a tough outing against Texas, an indefinite leave of absence means it’s likely the Cyclones could be without their dynamic quarterback longer than just a week. We certainly wish Jacob Park the best.
As for who takes his spot at the helm of the Iowa State offense, last season’s one-time starter Joel Lanning could’ve been an option, there to rescue the team in dire times — a la somewhat like Blake Bell in Bedlam 2013 — but because of Park’s success and potential in Campbell’s system, Lanning was moved to captain of the defense as the middle linebacker and has done quite well. However, don’t be surprised to see a situational package that includes him.
Randy Peterson of the Des Moines Register shares his thoughts on who starts Saturday:
Kyle Kempt or Zeb Noland will start — unless the Cyclones want to do something waaaaaay out of the box — and I’m not suggesting Lanning starts on both sides of the ball.
- Will Johnson is expected back in the lineup, which could provide a big boost a unit that’s been lackluster at times through the last two games. Coming off the bye week, getting healthy and adding a couple of tweaks here and there should fix some complacency issues that were perhaps rearing their ugly heads. Johnson’s energy and experience will be a welcomed sight on the field tomorrow.
- Through the first four weeks of the 2017 season, the Oklahoma offense has been nothing short of spectacular. Here are some of OU Assistant AD Mike Houck’s tweets about just how elite we’re talking here:
#Sooners lead the nation in total offense (606 ypg), pass completion pct. (76.7), pass efficiency rating (229.9; next highest is 180.7)...— Mike Houck (@mhouckOU) October 6, 2017
OU also leads nation in passing TDs w/o an INT (15; next most is 10), yards/play (9.1; next highest is 8.2), yds/play difference (+4.3)...— Mike Houck (@mhouckOU) October 6, 2017
And OU leads nation in yds/pass attempt (13.3), pass plays of 20+ yards (7.3/game), pass plays of 80+ yards (2), plays of 80+ yards (3)...— Mike Houck (@mhouckOU) October 6, 2017
Anndd OU leads nation in points/possession (3.9), pct. of plays that end in a TD (54.2; next highest is 47.5)...— Mike Houck (@mhouckOU) October 6, 2017
Annnddd OU leads nation in consecutive wins (14; next longest streak is 10) and consecutive true road wins (13). #BoomerSooner— Mike Houck (@mhouckOU) October 6, 2017
- And the always insightful Joel Klatt on his front-runner for the Heisman:
Without Park and facing what should be a motivated Oklahoma team at home (sporting a brand new, sleek, all-red look) could mean trouble for the Cyclones. Though the Iowa State defense and run game are both promising units, Oklahoma’s depth will prove to be too much.
As long as OU isn’t already looking ahead to next week, this should be a comfortable win. OU 47, Iowa State 17.
Enjoy Week 6, Sooner Nation!
Head down to the comments section for the game thread, where Austin, Sam and others will be asking questions, making predictions and discussing the day’s action with y’all.
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