NORMAN, Oklahoma – After a big win over Florida State on Saturday, Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops took the podium Tuesday for his weekly press conference with a lot to talk about.
Coach Stoops touched on the many positives of the 23-13 victory over the No. 5 Seminoles. Tom Wort, Javon Harris, Frank Alexander and Travis Lewis were all mentioned as having great games Saturday. Kenny Stills was the offensive player of the game after pulling down a 37-yard touchdown pass for a touchdown. Stoops also mentioned that Gabe Ikard and Ben Habern both played great on the line, while Tress Way had a good game punting the ball.
Stoops also mentioned he was pleased with the run game, particularly coming out of the gate in the beginning in such a loud and excited environment. "Landry (Jones) was really good all night in particular in the fourth quarter when we needed him." said Stoops.
"It was a really solid game and it really gives our players a log of confidence," said Stoops.
Looking forward, the Sooners will host Missouri on Saturday at 7 p.m.
As many can recall, last season the No. 1 ranked Sooners hit the road to play Missouri and wound up losing by a final of 36-27.
"Everyone knows we were ranked No. 1 in the country as we went up there to play and they knocked us off and beat us and beat us well so they are still really good in all the things they were a year ago," said Stoops. "They have great balance on offense with run and pass and they do a really good job of both. Their defense, they mix it up in coming after you and then they have good strong structures in what they do and good players all around."
"We understand our first conference game is another major challenge right after the one we just had but its and exciting one and one we are going to work hard and look to in order to be prepared for Saturday," said Stoops.
For the Sooners, the game against the Tigers has nothing to do with revenge; it's about getting better and getting a win.
"There's a lot of respect there, so we gotta do our part during the week to have a chance to win."
Coach Stoops also addressed the ongoing discussion about Travis Lewis' injury. After breaking a bone in his foot in early August, Lewis came back early from the injury and played in Saturday's game against Florida State.
Stoops said Lewis didn't have hardly any practice before playing in the game.
"He had some on Thursday which was just shoulder pads and helmets, then going against the scout team…but that was about it," said Stoops. "You really rely on Travis' experience. He has played a long time and so we trusted he would be ready to play and he really was. Even conditioning wise he said he was really only tired at the beginning of the game which is natural because of the excitement plus the excitement of being out there and going full speed for the first time in five-and-a-half weeks."
As far as if he will play against Missouri, Stoops said, "I believe so…but we'll see how it goes."
On running back Roy Finch:
Stoops on Finch not playing:"That's how it's worked out. These other guys have done real well. We'll get Roy more and more as we go."
"We're gonna play guys to win," said Stoops. "If I don't win, I get fired."
Coach Stoops says Finch is not in the dog house or not playing for any particular reason other than the fact that to him Dominique Whaley and Brennan Clay have just been better.
On fan presence against Missouri:
"I expect our fans will be that way this weekend. I know they've don't it before in these kind of games. I think back to Texas Tech a few years ago when they came in here and heck, they had a hard time communicating and its tough on a quarterback and teams that are a no-huddle and at the line and communicating it down the line of scrimmage, it can really cause a problem," said Stoops. "So hopefully our crowd here will jump in here this week and do it the same way. "
On conference realignment:
"I have been in constant communication and contact with President Boren and Joe Castiglione in regard to the matter and they have sought my opinion throughout the situation." I appreciate being involved in it. At the end of the day I am for whatever our leadership and the board of regents and the university president and athletic director feel is the best direction for us to go. For me to say what my feelings are I don't feel would be right."
On Jimmy Stevens final field goal of the game:
I didn't say anything to him, I was afraid if I said anything to him the outcome might have changed. He had good aim, just not good trajectory.
On if Stoops was worried Ryan Broyles wouldn't play against Florida State:
"No, just because I know Ryan. I was worried about how long he would be able to play or would he cramp up. He is as tough as they are and the way I know him, he would have to be pinned down in a hospital bed not to play," said Stoops. "I thought our team doctors and trainers did a great job with IV's and their treatment throughout the day to get them back to feeling decent."