Thanks to strong performances on both sides of the ball in a 44-34 win at previously unbeaten Baylor on Saturday, Oklahoma was named the AutoNation National Team of the Week on Monday, as chosen by the Football Writers Association of America.
After Baylor, which was ranked No. 4 in the AP poll, scored on its first possession to go up 6-0, OU answered with its own score to lead 7-6 and never trailed again. The Sooners led by as many as 14 (34-20), only to see the Bears trim the margin to three (37-34) in the fourth quarter. That's when OU quarterback Baker Mayfield executed the game's signature play, connecting with Dimitri Flowers on a 7-yard touchdown pass on third-and-goal with 4:47 remaining to ice the victory for head coach Bob Stoops' squad.
Despite rainy conditions all game, Oklahoma racked up at least 500 yards of total offense (511) for the fifth straight game, with Mayfield completing 24 of 34 passes for 270 yards and three touchdowns and running for 76 yards and another TD. Wide receiver Sterling Shepard caught 14 of those balls (one shy of his own school record) for 177 yards and two scores. Samaje Perine ran for 166 yards and two touchdowns of his own, the second coming from 55 yards out.
As good as OU was offensively, the story of the night may have been the Sooners defense. Oklahoma held the Bears to 416 total yards (250 below their season average) and to 257 passing yards (100 below their average). After surrendering 61 rushing yards on six carries on the opening drive, OU allowed just 98 rushing yards on 38 carries (2.6 average) the rest of the game.
Baylor's Corey Coleman, who entered the game averaging 147.3 receiving yards and had registered a nation-leading 20 receiving TDs on the year, was held to three catches for 51 yards and no scores. He had scored a TD in every game this season prior to Saturday, and had recorded at least two in each of the previous seven games.
The Sooners forced six Baylor punts (it was averaging 2.6 punts per game) and five three-and-out possessions (was averaging 1.5). Eight BU drives that didn't end in a score lasted three plays or fewer.
The win moved OU to 9-1 on the year and to 6-1 in Big 12 play, and vaulted it to No. 7 in the AP and Coaches polls.
The Sooners host No. 11 TCU on Saturday at 7 p.m. CT. It is the final home game of the season for OU, which is looking to reach the 10-win mark for the 13th time in the 17-year Stoops era.