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Red Raider Return: Mayfield To Play In Lubbock For First Time Since Transferring

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After nearly two and a half years of waiting, OU quarterback Baker Mayfield will return to Lubbock this weekend to take on Texas Tech for the first time since leaving behind the black and red for the crimson and cream.

Related: Highlights From Bob Stoops' News Conference As OU Prepares For Texas Tech

While the No. 1 priority for Oklahoma is to continue conference play without a blemish, there are some players who want to go into a hostile environment and come back to Norman with a win for their quarterback.

“I’m going to have his back, so if people disrespect him I feel like they disrespect me, so we want to go out there and bring one home for Bake [Mayfield], Coach Riley, [Dennis] Simmons and stuff like that,” linebacker Jordan Evans said. “At the same time we still have to stay focused on us, and not let us get too big headed about that stuff.”

Last season Mayfield led the Sooners to a 63-27 blowout over Texas Tech where he threw for 212 yards and two scores, but that game was in the friendly confines of Memorial Stadium. With Saturday’s scheduled for 7 p.m., the Red Raider faithful have even more motivation to get rowdy and attempt to get in the head of Mayfield.

“Baker’s kind of a different guy,” tight end Mark Andrews said. “He kind of prides himself on stuff like this. I think he’s going to be amped up and ready to go. He knows what he’s going into.

“Those guys won’t be too nice and too friendly to him when he goes down there. He’s ready for that, he’ll be prepared for it and I think he’ll bring his ‘A Game’ for sure.”

Mayfield is an emotional player, and we saw what happens when he gets a bit too hyped up in last season’s loss to Texas, but his teammates are confident he’ll be focused on the goal at hand.  

“Knowing Baker he’s a huge competitor,” Evans said. “He’s going to be just as competitive as ever before, but at the same time I’m sure he’s going to have a little edge about him, but who wouldn’t? If you go back to where you come from you’re going to always want to ball out there but I know he’s going to stay focused and not let the moment get to ahead of himself.”

While some of his teammates appear to be fired up by the narrative of Baker’s return to Lubbock, OU head coach Bob Stoops doesn’t think it’s the right way to get motivated.

“No, I don’t think that’s a very positive form of motivation,” Stoops said. “Those kind of things to me are sort of negative forms of motivation.

“The motivation ought to be that we’re still undefeated in conference play and we’re going down to play another good football team at their place at night, we need to be at our best. That’s the kind of motivation you’d hope for.”

As for Mayfield himself, he knows what he’ll be getting into when he steps on the field inside of Jones AT&T Stadium.

“They will be ready for me when I get down there, that’s for sure,” Mayfield said. “I’m excited for it. It’s always fun to go play in Lubbock, obviously this time I’m on the other side of it, but it’ll be an interesting matchup and I’ll get my guys ready and we should have a good time.”

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