Scouting Report: Oklahoma Sooners

Little has changed as Oklahoma is again a strong team overall. The Sooners have had difficulty playing on the road, but that won't come into play on Saturday. Motivation should be high following the loss to Texas Tech because while Oklahoma exited the national championship race they are needing a win to qualify for the Big 12 Championship game a week from Saturday in San Antonio.

In the past head coach Bob Stoops was less than enthusiastic about playing Bedlam on the last Saturday of the regular season. But in recent seasons, with Oklahoma winning, that feeling seems to have lessened. It could actually play into the Sooners favor this week as the rivalry could help overcome the loss of momentum with the 34-27 loss at Texas Tech and the injuries OU suffered during the contest.

Offense
Oklahoma teams under Stoops have typically been at their best late in the season, but this squad has been different. After starting out on fire in the nonconference schedule both of their losses have been in conference play and the numbers have gone done on both sides of the ball in league play.

Offensively, Oklahoma is roughly 60 percent run and 40 percent pass. In Big 12 play they are averaging 393.6 yards a game in total offense with a breakdown of 144.4 yards rushing and 249.1-yards passing. They will be without DeMarco Murray at running back and he leads the team in rushing with 764 yards (6.0 ypc). Murray has been the big play back. That leaves the duo of Allen Patrick (5.4 ypc) and Chris Brown (4.1 ypc) to handle the load, which they did effectively in the Bedlam game last season.

Sam Bradford is completing 70 percent of his passes and leads the nation in passing efficiency, but the concussion suffered last Saturday at Texas Tech could cause him to either miss the game or be less than 100 percent. Joey Halzle is not as effective, and if Bradford is out, The Ou staff might opt for talented freshman Keith Nichol although that would be a ballsy move.

There are five wide receivers/tight ends averaging double digits in yards per reception with Malcolm Kelly by far the most dangerous, but Juaquin Iglesias, Manuel Johnson, and tight ends Joe Jon Finley and Jermaine Gresham must be respected and defended.

The offensive line is huge and highly regarded, but can be prone to mistakes at times. In pass protection they have given up only 10 sacks, a league leading number that has them tied with the Cowboy offensive line.

Defense
In Big 12 play Oklahoma is allowing 22.1 points and 379.9 yards a game, both numbers are up from last season but so are everyones it seems. The defensive tackles DeMarcus Granger and Gerald McCoy don't have big numbers, but they control the inside and get great push.

They are a major reason that Auston English at defensive end and Curtis Lofton at linebacker have made so many plays. The Sooners are allowing only 103.6 yards on the ground, but have faced nobody that run the ball nearly as well as Oklahoma State. They allow 276.3 yards per game passing in the Big 12 play, which is actually a pretty decent number considering the spread offenses in the league now.

They have recovered eight fumbles and picked off 18 passes this season and are tied in league play with OSU at plus five in turnover margin. This is a good Oklahoma defense, but not a great one.

Special Teams
Oklahoma is solid here with the weaknesses being extra points where they have missed a baffling five PAT attempts. They are solid, but not spectacular in returns and while their punter is average their coverage has been above average.

GoPokes Top Stories