Every Monday afternoon during the football season, Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops holds a weekly press conference. Sooners Illustrated is there for all of them and gives you the three biggest things from the event.
Game No. 10: at Baylor
Take No. 1: Stoops knows Stidham is real deal
Usually when a top 10 team loses its starting quarterback, there’s going to be quite the drop off. Maybe there will be in future games, but there sure wasn’t with Baylor and true freshman Jarrett Stidham last week against Kansas State.
Stidham showed why he was such a coveted recruit with pin-point accuracy and a strong arm in the Bears win in Manhattan.
“Excellent,” said Stoops about Stidham’s performance. “The guy is completing 77 percent of his passes and I thought he did a really good job just going to the right guys and looked really good.”
Stidham was recruited heavily by the Sooners, but OU got in the game way too late in the process. OU made his top 10 but was never a real threat to land the talented signal-caller from Stephenville, Texas.
Take No. 2: Sooners not changing identity
Anybody who watched the Baylor-KSU game (since it was a Thursday) saw the Wildcats had great success running the ball and shortening the game and limiting possessions for the Bears.
And as this season has shown, that’s not exactly the forte for the Sooners. It won’t be the mindset for OU this weekend, either.
“That’s pretty simple,” Stoops said. “So I don’t see us all of a sudden abandoning what we’re doing and trying to do what they did.”
But what OU does need to do is score more points. A lot of people look at the 41 and 48 points allowed in the last two years. The Sooners, conversely, are averaging 13 points in those two blowout losses.
“That’s not going to do it,” Stoops said.
Take No. 3: OU as healthy as you can be
The Sooners somehow have made it through the first six Big 12 games without a season-ending injury. There have been a lot of bruises, a lot of games missed, but the nucleus for OU has remained intact.
That group will only get stronger this week as offensive guard Jonathan Alvarez and cornerback Zack Sanchez should both play although the only thing Stoops could confirm Monday was both would practice Monday.
Cornerback Dakota Austin has been fantastic in the absence of Sanchez, but there’s no controversy here. If Sanchez is healthy, he’s starting, said Stoops.
Jordan Evans and Devante Bond both returned last week, and you could barely notice they had missed any time at all.