Originally Published: Dec 7, 2009 5:37 PM CDT
Word out of California is that Stanford QB Andrew Luck "could be back to play" OU in the Sun Bowl, but will be out "two to three weeks" after surgery to repair a throwing hand finger. Luck sustained the injury against Notre Dame.
Let's begin our analysis with three important categories. Please check our Crystal Ball section and this blog to get further breakdowns between OU and Stanford as we get closer to the illustrious Sun Bowl.
QB-PUSH: Going with a push because of the uncertainty surrounding Stanford's star Oliver Luck, who "could play" following surgery on a throwing hand finger. Truth is if he plays, Stanford gets the edge. If Stanford is out of Luck and he sits this one out, OU and Landry Jones gets the edge. Sooner fans are probably thinking it's about time they play someone with key injuries-especially with star QB Bradford out. Jones needs to use the extra bowl prep time to take a step forward. Stanford is fortunate to have a Heisman-esque-type ground game to relieve
COACHES-PUSH: Bob Stoops catches the wrath of some Sooner fans who don't understand if you lose a dozen players to injury including six or seven who are really good that you aren't going to cakewalk every game. Rational football people know he is a great coach, despite five straight BCS losses and only one bowl win since the Rose Bowl following the 2002 season. Jim Harbaugh is an up-and-comer who may have already arrived. Stanford's turnaround and beating USC the past two years is all you need to know about this guy.
INTANGIBLES-STANFORD: Look for all the stories about the Sooners to be about how important it is to end the season on a positive note and to end the bowl jinx-which may not be the right word. But like the Boise States and West Virginias of the world, Stanford is a very good team that sees a chance to take a big step forward beating a traditional power. Preparation, focus, commitment???all those buzz words apply in bowl games where there's five weeks from the end of the regular season to the bowl game. Stanford will be primed.
More breakdowns to come later--so keep in touch--DB