SoonersIllustrated.com is going to set the stage every week breaking down Oklahoma’s game during the 2014 season.
OU (6-3, 3-3) at Texas Tech (3-6, 1-5)
When: 2:30 p.m. CST
OU’s biggest question going into the game
Is pride going to be enough for the Sooners? It’s the biggest unknown heading into this one because you cannot predict how 18-22-year-old kids are going to respond after what has happened in the last six weeks.
OU is out of the hunt for everything. Season goals are gone. The players have talked about finishing strong and playing with pride because they’re still the University of Oklahoma. What we’re going to find out is whether or not they meant it or were just going through the motions.
The team could come out fired up and fly around the ball again, no doubt about that. But it could just as easily start sulking the minute something goes wrong and continue this six-week long tailspin for the program.
Add in the fact it will be Cody Thomas’ first start at quarterback, and it could be a nervous Saturday afternoon in Lubbock.
Texas Tech’s biggest question going into the game
Will Tech be able to rattle the Sooners? OU has been staggered and is on the ropes. All the Red Raiders need to do is deliver the knockout blow.
Might be easier said than done. It’s going to be crucial in front of the home crowd to get off to a fast start against the Sooners. To start planting those seeds of doubt for the OU players and a sense of dread of here we go again.
Tech’s season has also been a disappointment, but it can salvage some things with a win against the Sooners on another pretty big recruiting weekend.
“We didn’t do nearly enough. We have to learn from it, be men about it and accept what we didn’t do well and try to get better. We got three games, and we need to get better, improve. We have to learn from this tape and make the adjustments, need to make and put the right plan together to go out and win this week. That’s all that really matters.” - OU wide receivers coach Jay Norvell
Maybe it’s not the impact some expected from the former No. 1 player in the state, but Steven Parker has quietly had himself a quality freshman season. Seems obvious Parker is going to start the rest of the way and that comfort level is going to begin to be shown down the stretch as Parker is going to make a couple of big plays against Tech.
OU 27, Texas Tech 23. It’s not going to be pretty in Lubbock for either team. The Sooners are going to have to somehow put the past behind them and focus on the final three regular season games. Won’t be an easy chore, but OU gets its first win under first-time starter Cody Thomas in a tight battle.