All plays matter but some factor into the game’s outcome more than others. Here are the five plays that told the story of Oklahoma and Iowa State.
OU 52, Iowa State 16
Play No. 1: Riley goes deep into the bag of tricks
That’s one way to start a game, no? After Iowa State used 10 plays and 4:14 on its first drive to nail a field goal, the Sooners erased that deficit in 13 seconds.
Quarterback Baker Mayfield gave the ball to Samaje Perine, who then flipped it to Sterling Shepard. Shepard tossed it back to Mayfield, who then passed it to a wide open Dimitri Flowers for the 75-yard touchdown on the first play from scrimmage.
Flowers was so wide open, the only question was making sure Mayfield got it there and Flowers made the catch. Shepard, for what it’s worth, probably would have earned at least 30 yards if they had gone that direction of him running it.
Great play call by offensive coordinator Lincoln Riley, setting the tone early.
Play No. 2: Austin leaves mark again
Add cornerback Dakota Austin to the list of guys who stepped up when called upon and have made sure the Sooners are rolling into the final three games.
Iowa State had done a great job with Joel Lanning at quarterback of not making a mistake, but Austin forced him into one with six minutes left in the first quarter.
Facing a third-and-15 from ISU’s 27 yard line, Lanning looked like he might have a receiver open down field. Austin tipped the pass forward and caught up to it for his second interception this season.
Not only that, but Austin then had a 38-yard return to set up the Sooners for another one-play scoring drive when Mayfield found wide receiver Dede Westbrook for a 27-yard score.
Play No. 3: Walker makes the stand
OU fans would rather forget the second quarter, being outscored 6-0. It could have been worse, though, but Charles Walker and the OU defense would not allow it.
The Sooners were up 21-6 when ISU faced a fourth-and-one at OU’s 35 yard line. Redshirt freshman running back Mike Warren was stoned by the combination of Jordan Wade and Charles Walker for no gain to give the ball back to OU.
It was another big night for the defense, holding down the fort when the offense struggled in the second quarter and limiting Warren to just 43 yards on 18 attempts.
Play No. 4: Westbrook keeps drive alive
There’s always going to be a play or two that won’t feel so pivotal until you’re looking back. For this game, it was a third-and-13 conversion on the first drive of the second half.
After being held scoreless in the second quarter, it was key for OU’s offense to find its groove once again. Mayfield was able to connect with Westbrook for an 18-yard gain on third down on a back shoulder throw to keep the drive alive.
The Sooners eventually scored a field goal and then scored touchdowns on their next four possessions to put the game away.
Play No. 5: Tapper continues stellar play
Whatever defensive line coach Diron Reynolds said to senior defensive end Charles Tapper, it’s obviously working.
Tapper had zero sacks in the first seven games but is now coming off back-to-back multiple sack performances.
With OU up 24-9, Tapper had a big third down sack to force the Cyclones to punt. And that was pretty much the end of this one being a threat as OU rolled down the field the next drive and firmly put distance between itself and Iowa State.
It’s time for Baylor.