Just when you thought the OU defense had turned the corner, back to back rough outings have pumped the brakes on some of that optimism.

Parnell Motley ultimately saved the day for the Sooners against Iowa State with his interception on the potential game-winning 2-point conversion attempt, but the overall numbers are far from where they were at the start of Big 12 play.

OU is giving up 25 more points per game in their last two conference games compared to the first four.

"We haven't played as good," said head coach Lincoln Riley. "We've done it in spurts, have had spurts where we haven't tackled as good and we've continued to put ourselves in a hole where we've got to play really well. Definitely some things we need to do better."

Next up for the Sooners is a showdown for first place in the Big 12 with Baylor on Saturday.