Originally Published: Oct 16, 2010 9:3 PM CDT
Who knows if Iowa State is the worst defensive team in history, but Oklahoma did all a superior team could do in the first half. Pitch a shutout, post 31, and play as clean as they’ve played this season. The intensity level was high from start to the finish of the first thirty.
Defensively, tackling is still not what it needs to be for the Sooners to become a true championship caliber team. Wrapping up the big but slippery ISU QB Austen Arnaud proved to be a challenge. The DL must do a better job of that because a couple more QBs who can juke jive and make plays with their feet or their arms are on the horizon. DE Coach Bobby Jack Wright rotated ends every two plays.
Frank Alexander was especially effective getting his first start of the season. This defense needs Alexandera starter in 2009 who has big time potential who has been slowed by a foot injuryto become a force. Bookend studs at DE can make up for the less-than-dominant foursome that alternate at DL and NG.
Roy Finch debuted and immediately reminded many of us of two of the best five RBs in OU history: Greg Pruitt and Little Joe Washington. Of course, the little freshman has a long way to go before reaching those heights, but his burst was special. This dimension should make the Sooners more dangerous down the stretch.
Not to be overlooked is perhaps the most important element of the offense. The thing that could derail any championship hopes. Or, the part of the offense that could vault it into rarified air. We’re talking about Landry Jones.
The soft-spoken sophomore is getting better game by game. An across the field out route showed his arm strength has improved and is plenty strong to play the college game. His bubbles and short throws were precise hitting receivers in stridepreviously a weakness, now a strength. Deep balls were all catchablea big improvement. Decision making and check downs continue to improve. Didn’t know if these words would ever be written your typist here, but Landry Jones looked Bradford-esque.
I don’t believe Jones will be looked at as a first-round draft pick after next season, which is good news for the Sooners. He’ll likely become a special college quarterback who starts four seasons and will likely set every record in the OU books.
Jones hit his first thirteen throws, was 25-of-27 for 248 yards and 2 TDs at half, and ended with a tidy 30-of-34 for 334 yards, 3 TDs and no intercepts. The record is held by Sam Bradford who went 21-of-23 against North Texas in 2007 for an average of 91.3 percent). He sat deep into the third with his club having totaled 550 total yards with a lead of 45-0. Jones hit 88.2 percent of his throws, second only to Sam Bradford’s record of 91.3.
OU found a new kickoff man. Patrick O’Hara showed off the right leg Bob Stoops has bragged about. Tress Way has just not gotten the ball deep enoughballs getting to an average of the 21 yard line in the first half (some into some with the wind). Way, a class kid with an upbeat attitude, has told me his leg gets worn out sometimes with the deep kickoffs. Punting puts more wear and tear on his left kicking leg.
Since punting is clearly the strength of Way, look for Oklahoma to now go with three kickers: Way punting, O’Hara kickoffs and Jimmy Stevens with place-kicking. Although, I guess we can’t put it past Stoops to trot out Patty O to attempt long kicks. Didn’t know kicking the oblong sphere could be that complicated. Now all Patty O has to do is quick grabbing return men by the face mask.
Mossis Madu put the pig on the soil which ISU covered making it the first lost fumble of the season by a running back. Landry Jones had the only other lost fumble.
OU had only one loss-yardage play through three quarters. The Sooners had only 3 penalties for 31 yards with their regulars in the game through three quarters.
For those keeping score at home, the volume of the “home of the Sooners” won out 3-to-1 over the “home of the bravers.”
ABC will carry the OU-Missouri game on national TV at 7pm.