Consistency is Key For O-Line

Last year, the offensive line was a major liability.

Guys were injured, and the group never quite meshed, as the Sooners had to mix players in but never really could quite get a set rotation that could get the job done.

To start this season, things were supposed to be different.

OU had a set five up front that had really blended together throughout the entire offseason.

And for the most part, that has made things different this season than in 2009.

But the obvious struggles the other night could not be ignored.

"[We got] beat at the point of attack pad level," said offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson. "You know, things like that that kind of get you. So again, we're pretty good in short yardage but weren't good on the one and two yard line. I think we had 10 snaps down there and scored one time out of 10 running plays."

Getting stopped once on the goal line with a powerful line like OU can put together? Unacceptable.

But getting stopped twice inside the one-yard line? That's even more unacceptable.

And three times in goal-to-go situations? Completely unacceptable.

Despite that, though, head coach Bob Stoops supported the group, justifying that the offensive line is a major reason they won some of the games they did in the first place.

"They've been maybe overall, you know, they've been consistent, inconsistent," Stoops said. "It's been a little of both because I'm not going to sit here [and complain too much]. We're 7-2. We've played well in a lot of cases. So, and the other night, there's a lot of cases where we played well. We didn't play well on the goal line, so to sit here and act like they haven't done anything, you know, they haven't done fairly well I don't think would be correct. So, they're also a reason why we have seven wins."

With that said, a focus point as much as possible this week has been on the physicality up front in short yardage situations.

"Again, we try to practice it, but we're also at the time of the year with time on task, you're a little beaten up, worn out," Wilson said. "You don't go out there and [do too much]. You know, you're trying to stay fresh, shorten practices, you know, stay sharp physically, mentally, etc., so that's a fine line, but again, the guys had a good attitude yesterday, worked as best they could. You know, you do a lot of things in practice. We've been trying to stay full go up off the ground."

That will help to get some more consistency, something that wasn't quite there the other night.

"There were parts in there where we did do pretty well," Stoops said. "So, you know, it just in some cases in different games it's been inconsistent. And other games it's been very good, and you'd have to admit that for a good part of the year."

Certainly a valid point, but Sooner Nation is looking for solid line play to be more routine the rest of the year.

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