Back in the day, one loss meant the end of the national championship dream. But with a four-team playoff and the fact that no college football team has looked dominant this season, no reason for Oklahoma to not be able to bounce back.
However, let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Before you start figuring out ways for the Sooners to finagle their way back into the top four, they have a lot of issues to address and a lot of big-time games where they need to show up for four quarters.
Not a half. Not just a quarter, but a full game.
“From here on out, it needs to be a redemption thing,” senior center Ty Darlington said. “Obviously the sickening feeling in your stomach you get walking out of the Cotton Bowl needs to be remembered and carried forward into the next game and every game after it.”
The problem you saw with last year’s team after that defeat to Kansas State was the fact there weren’t those confidence-building wins later in the schedule. Once OU lost to KSU for its second loss, you sort of knew the Sooners didn’t have a chance to rally back.
This year is different. The schedule either sets up great in one point of view or is an absolute murderers row for another. We’re a long way from OU’s final three games of Baylor, TCU and Oklahoma State. If OU doesn’t bounce back this weekend at Kansas State, the Sooners will absolutely be reduced to playing spoiler.
All the leaders of this team have preached how 2014 would never happen again. Now they’re going to get their chance to show exactly what that means.
“Just the whole mentality,” running back Samaje Perine said. “Last year, after we had that loss against TCU, I felt like the energy left us. It really never came back. Yes, we had a couple of good games after that but the energy, it just wasn’t there. This year, we lost this game but everyone is fired up and ready to play.”
We’ll find out in Manhattan.