From the Coordinators: Todd Monken

With an open week to begin preparing for a huge rivalry game, some offensive coordinators would drive themselves crazy like a mad scientist coming up with something unexpected for the game, especially with an outright conference title and BCS berth on the line.

Last year OU did with the 50 front on defense and it worked. Two weeks ago Iowa State came out with a 4-4 stack defense that helped curtail the Cowboys running game. Defensive coaches do it too, but Monken says he is staying the course and after Iowa State the work went into doing what the Cowboys do, what they have done so well all season, and working to do it better against the Sooners.

"I don't know if it's one thing in particular," said Monken of the OU defense and some of their struggles this season. "When some teams have hit big plays against them, in their defense, maybe there were blown assignments. Maybe there are things Baylor and Texas Tech did, that we don't do. It's the same old thing. We have to do what we do and do it better, and hopefully that works."

Last year that wasn't the way then offensive coordinator Dana Holgorsen reacted when OU came out in the 50 front defense. It took the Cowboys almost a half to get on track offensively. Monken has watched and hasn't seen OU make many changes this season. Although personnel switches in the secondary with Aaron Colvin moving to free safety and Sam Proctor going to the strong safety might qualify.

"Not really. They didn't really change anything. They changed out a safety," stated Monken. "At this point in the season, you have what you have. They're trying to do what best fits them at the moment. When we watch film as an offense, we don't grade their players, they do. They're going to do what they do, and they're going to have a plan against us."

As for trying to guess if OU defensive coordinator Brent Venables will drum up something for Saturday, Monken doesn't sound like he is going to try to chase ghosts.

"What it does, is it disrupts you as a coordinator," said Monken of trying to anticipate something that is not there. "You freak out when you don't have to. They do a few things, and you start getting yourself out of rhythm. Do I think it disrupts what you prepared for all week? Sure. But, no one cares if they have three down linemen or four, you just have to score."

Actually, Monken added you have to score, take care of the football and not turn it over, and hope your defense will play well and get you some turnovers and then the recipe is complete for Bedlam success or any football success.


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