Setting the Stage: OU vs. Akron

One last look at the Sooners' season opener against the Zips

SoonersIllustrated.com is going to set the stage every week, breaking down Oklahoma’s upcoming game during the 2014 season.

Akron (0-0) at Oklahoma (0-0)

When: 6 p.m. CST

Biggest question

How will the first starts go? There are at least 10 players on the roster who will make the first start of their career Saturday. A handful of others will play in the first half of a game for the first time.

This offense is making its first start too – only Sterling Shepard and Baker Mayfield have any real game experience in the attack.

It’s been said before: Don’t have to be perfect but have to be clean.

An educated (yet off-the-wall) guess

Five different players will score a touchdown - A little more specific? There will be three receiving touchdowns and two rushing. You want more? Joe Mixon and Samaje Perine will carry it in. Mark Andrews, Shepard and Jarvis Baxter will catch passes for touchdowns.

Oklahoma is going to score a bunch.

Oh yeah, and Dede Westbrook finishes with more than 100 yards but has to wait for his first score.

Player to watch

Linebacker Jordan Evans - . Gone are the days of the undersized linebacker. Now it's time to see what Jordan Evans can do, all 6-2, 240 pounds of him. OU linebackers have been criticized for their lack of physicality in the past, Evans gets the season started on the right foot Saturday.

Prediction

Hite - Oklahoma’s offense sputters early and only picks up one first down on the first three drives, but breaks it open for five scores before halftime. The rest of the game is in cruise, but Baxter takes one to the house from more than 40 yards out in the second half. No doubt – Oklahoma 45, Akron 14.

Przybylo - If you're looking for a lot here, you're going to be disappointed. OU will do enough to get the job done without showing all of its wrinkles. A solid opener for Baker Mayfield combined with at least two turnovers on defense leads to an easy win in the range of 41-14 to set up the showdown at Tennessee.


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