The Bell Rings

MANHATTAN, Kan. — For a moment, it looked like Tim Tebow in there for the Sooners.

A big, athletic guy plowing through the line in goal line situations in the quarterback run game for a touchdown.

A guy working other short yardage situations with his strong 6-foot-6, 245 pound frame.

Well, at least from a stand point of how they're using him, that's OU version of Tebow, Sooner quarterback Blake Bell.

Bell, who said he was a little nervous but more excited to play on a field he'd seen some games at growing up, scored the first touchdown of his career on a 1-yard run up the middle out of the shotgun formation on first-and-goal just about three minutes into the game against Kansas State.

"It was awesome, just right when I plunged in there, the feeling was awesome," Bell said. "All of a sudden I saw the teammates coming and jumping. I can't even explain it."

How could he?

Especially for a Kansas-born kid to get his first touchdown in the state of Kansas.

"Yeah, man just like I told them, it was awesome just knowing that I can come back to my home state, you know, get my first touchdown," Bell said. "It's kind of awesome. That's basically all I can say."

Bell said the Sooners have been working on the goal line-short yardage package for a couple weeks.

The reason why?

"Well, obviously to use some quarterback run game," said head coach Bob Stoops. "Blake's a big guy that about--you know he's all of 6-6, 255 pounds. You have a big, physical guy and just some of the different quarterback run game that a lot of people use."

It gives them another option, though, too.

"Also the advantage of being able to throw it with him," Stoops said. "You know, he's a big guy that also throws well, so you can mix that in, too."

As can be expected, Bell's first major outing wasn't a perfect one.

Later in the first quarter, he fumbled on a third-and-2 play that stalled a drive at the Wildcats' 42-yard line, although he fortunately did recover it for a loss of two.

"Yeah, it was just me and Roy [Finch] had a little fumble exchange," Bell said. "But first [game], it was my fault. Obviously being the quarterback, I got to, you know, take control and hold onto it."

Earlier in the drive, there was some confusion in the short yardage set, leading to a substitution infraction.

"Just miscommunication on which fullback was on the field, but you know, that's just little stuff you got to correct during practice and the week," Bell said.

All in all, though, the new set's positives outweighed its negatives.

"I'm excited, finally like I said, getting in there and getting some reps," Bell said. "For me, it's huge just to get on the field. You know what I mean? I've been practicing and all that like I've been telling you guys. But finally getting out there and the atmosphere and things like that, it's awesome."

--Josh Helmer contributed to this story--

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