OU shuts down Volunteers in victory

Sooners' defense overwhelms Tennessee to remain unbeaten

Oklahoma quarterback Trevor Knight surpassed 300 passing yards for the second time in his career, and the Sooners defense was dominant as Oklahoma eased to a 34-10 victory in its biggest non-conference test against Tennessee on Saturday in front of the sixth-largest crowd in Sooners’ history.

Bob Stoops remained unbeaten at home against current SEC teams, posting a 13-0 record.

In the first matchup between Tennessee (2-1) and Oklahoma (3-0) since 1968, the Sooners’ defense showed on the biggest televised stage of the night that they are for real.

Linebacker Eric Striker was a dominating terror who finished with five tackles, leading a defense that scored a touchdown for the fifth time in six games, sacked Tennessee quarterback Justin Worley five times and forced him into nearly a dozen hurries.

Julian Wilson had a 100-yard interception return in the fourth quarter, only the fifth play of 100 yards in Oklahoma history and the second 100-yard interception in school history.

The Sooners didn’t allow Tennessee, which hasn’t beaten a ranked team on the road since 2005, to recorded positive rushing yards until the third quarter.

The Volunteers had played 22 true freshmen before Saturday, and it showed at times, as blitzers came free to put constant pressure on Worley, who was able to extend play with his legs. He did exactly that on Tennessee’s first touchdown of the game, which came on a 40-yard pass in the second quarter.

Knight picked up where he left off in the Sugar Bowl, once again throwing for more than 300 yards against an SEC opponent. He’s only ever thrown for 300 yards against an SEC team.

Knight finished 20-for-33 for 308 yards and one touchdown. Knight also ran for a touchdown. Oklahoma was dominant in the first half but entered the second half with only a 13-point lead. The Sooners held Tennessee to negative-11 yards on the ground and had more than double the Volunteers total yardage (293 to 133) despite have less than three minutes of a possession advantage.

The Sooners’ defense recorded four sacks in the first half, but Worley was able to escape pressure on multiple occasions and make throws down field.

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