Stoops has answers for critics and OSU MVP obvious

Thursday, May 26th 2011, 1:31 pm
By: News 9

Originally Published: Dec 31, 2010 3:9 PM CDT

<STRONG>Attended first media session in Phoenix this morning. Predictably, media far and wide are focusing on the two primary storylines: Bob Stoops&rsquo; losing five straight BCS bowls. UConn being disrespected. </STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>Here&rsquo;s how I would answer those questions. Stoops, &ldquo;has anyone noticed every player that stayed four seasons was in a national championship game and also won a Big 12 Championship?&rdquo;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>If I were Randy Edsall and was asked if he uses the fact that UConn is the biggest underdog in BCS history I&rsquo;d say, &ldquo;We don&rsquo;t talk about that. Next question.</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>Edsall came with an honest answer today when he stated his team must be ready for OU&rsquo;s up-tempo offense because if they don&rsquo;t it could be an avalanche. He&rsquo;s not suggesting that his team is out of its league. Rather, the fact that OU piled up early points against many opponents with their fast-fast-fast style. Edsall was frank in saying an &ldquo;avalanche&rdquo; of points must be avoided. </STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>OU OC Kevin Wilson was the coach most responsible for the fast-tempo offenses seen in college football today. He brought good ideas from Northwestern in the early 2000s to Norman and wound up wanting to get the most number of plays possible with superior talent, most notably QBs like Jason White and Sam Bradford.</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>Wilson told our &ldquo;very own&rdquo; Toby Rowland this morning that he will sit in the press box with Josh Heupel but basically not have input unless Heupel wants it in between possessions. His intensity has always been a boon to his players who will lose some of that with a more low-key Heupel. Shouldn&rsquo;t be much of a problem long-term, but if Stoops decides to not hire another offensive coach, some of Wilson&rsquo;s assets will be missedeven if Heupel is equal to his game-planning/calling talent. </STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; </STRONG></P><STRONG>A few plays turn game. Momentum seems to be a bigger factor in college football than in the pros where the better team seems to win more often than dogs. With that in mind..I saw a stat that supported my premise that while OU&rsquo;s defense if much-improved, it&rsquo;s probably given up more big plays (15 plus yards) than any Bob Stoops team. An ESPN report had OU allowing an astounding 42 plays of fifteen or more. That&rsquo;s more than any bowl team and actually better than all but for FBS teams (and the teams lower than OU all had losing records).</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>Two players have been instrumental in OU improving on defenseone of them instrumental in helping in special teams. OU gave up two returns for TDs when Ronnell Lewis was injured. The defense was wobbly when MLB Austin Box and Lewis were out. Each is back now and is good vs. the run. If UConn is successful in the run game it&rsquo;s not because OU is shorthanded. </STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>UConn is hoping OU&rsquo;s ultra-aggressive defense gets itself out of position chasing up-field which would allow stud RB Todman seams to sprint through. Plausible. &#160;And they anticipate taking advantage of safety Jonathon Nelson&rsquo;s propensity for getting overly involved in the run game. Experts have actually noted this tendency and expect UConn&rsquo;s game plan to exploit this s. OU best look out for balls over the top. &#160;Plausible x2. </STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>Just a thought.but Stoops has called Owasso true freshman corner Aaron &ldquo; Colvin as good as any new player at any position that I&rsquo;ve had since we&rsquo;ve been here (dozen years x 20 players plus equals 240 players). Wow! &#160;He looked good in a back-up position at cornerback early in the season. But we&rsquo;ve not seen much of him late. Why? No real answer when I&rsquo;ve asked the coach, except that the other corners have been outstanding. Look for Colvin to step in at one of the vacant safety positions and start in 2011. &#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>-Not Mike Holder. Hands down it&rsquo;s the Money Man. The determination and wallet of T. Boone Pickens have been the most valuable things to happen in OSU sports since Mr. Iba hit Payne County. </STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>-How did Nebraska QB Taylor Martinez go from looking like a legit Heisman candidate in midseason to inept late in the season? I know he was slowed with injuries but surely he was healthier for last night&rsquo;s play on the offensive side. &#160;Nebraska is going to be challenged against some of the power games from teams like Wisconsin and Ohio State. That premise was given a &ldquo;ditto&rdquo; by a coach who should knowa coach who is pro-Nebraska.&#160; I hope the Huskers roll and am just sick about them leaving the Big 12. But Bo doesn&rsquo;t have them in a position to play week after week after week at a high enough level to be the championship program it was for so many years. I wouldn&rsquo;t bet against him getting therehopefully sooner rather than later. But where&rsquo;d Martinez go? MIA Taylor Martinez.</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>Have a good New Year&rsquo;s eve. Don&rsquo;t be over served or overstated. &#160;Easy for the second if you accomplish the first. Check us out on Oklahoma Sports.&#160; And follow me on twitter @deanblevins.</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P><STRONG>db</STRONG></P><STRONG>&#160;</STRONG></P>