Rapid reaction to Oklahoma's 59-14 win over Iowa State on Saturday.
The Good: There were a lot of good things for Oklahoma on Saturday, but the biggest had to be how the Sooners ran the ball. They did it consistently, they did it well and they stuck with it. Iowa State's run defense is awful, but anytime you run for 510 yards, it's a good day. Trevor Knight was fantastic, accounting for six touchdowns, including 146 yards and three scores on the ground. The Sooners have three players run for over 100 yards for the first time since Nov. 7, 1992 against Missouri. Knight (146), Alex Ross (144) and Samaje Perine (110) all crossed the century mark and David Smith came in and ran for 76 yards in the fourth quarter alone. Freshman wide receiver Michiah Quick was also impressive, getting a lot of targets after Sterling Shepard went out in the first quarter with a groin injury. The defense played well also, sans a few moments of poor tackling and a few coverage issues. The bye week definitely did the Sooners a lot of good, but playing Iowa State also probably played a factor.
The Bad: The injury to Shepard in the first quarter was concerning at first, but Shepard seemed fine after going to the locker room, but didn't return. Knight threw two interceptions that were both really poor decisions. He has to make better decisions, but the turnovers obviously didn't have any effect on the outcome. Julian Wilson had some rough moments in coverage, as did Zach Sanchez, who was beaten on a 59-yard touchdown pass thanks to a pump fake. Quick has a couple drops, but he's still growing as a wide receiver, and his hands were his biggest question mark as a recruit. Overall, mostly nit-picky things for the Sooners. It was a good day on both sides of the ball.
What it means: The Sooners got some mojo back on Saturday and did so by returning to their strengths and sticking to them. It comes at a good time as well, as Oklahoma hosts Baylor next week in an important Big 12 game. A win for OU could put them in place for a share of the conference title if other teams end up at 7-2 as well.
MVP: Trevor Knight
Knight wasn't perfect, but he was very good on Saturday, accounting for six touchdowns and running for 146 yards while throwing for 230 yards. His two interceptions weren't pretty, but he's still growing as a quarterback and learning he can't make a big play with every pass. Knight showed a lot of trust in his receivers, hitting seven different guys with passes.
Game-Changing Moment: The first quarter
The Sooners built a 21-0 lead before Iowa State could figure out what happened. The defense allowed two first downs on the first four ISU possessions while the offense scored on three of its first four possessions. OU racked up 274 yards in the first quarter alone, with Knight accounting for 221 of those and all three touchdowns.
Up Next: Oklahoma hosts Baylor next week in a huge Big 12 showdown. If the Sooners can play the rest of the season like they did on Saturday, and chaos ensues, they could put themselves in position for a big bowl game and possibly (but not likely) more.