Each week Sooners Illustrated will set the stage for every game of Oklahoma’s 2016 season. This time around OU heads to Ames to take on Iowa State.
OU (6-2, 5-0) at Iowa State (1-7, 0-5)
When: 6:30 p.m. CST
Przybylo’s final thought
Stick with what worked Saturday if you’re defensive coordinator Mike Stoops. The reason for optimism was there following the 56-3 win against Kansas.
No, not because of the final score but because he was willing to do some different things on defense. It was the first start for linebackers Caleb Kelly and Ricky DeBerry. Defensive tackle Du’Vonta Lampkin saw a lot more playing time.
It didn’t have to be used a lot, but he also explored a seven-defensive back lineup of Jordan Thomas, Ahmad Thomas, Jordan Parker, Steven Parker, Will Johnson, Kahlil Haughton and Will Sunderland.
Again, the issue after Texas Tech was going to be if Stoops sat on his hands and simply trusted things would be different the next time around.
He made the moves. Then you saw guys like Jordan Evans and Jordan Thomas come up big on defense for the Sooners against the Jayhawks. That’s the type of confidence you need and the type of production that has to occur going down the stretch.
Iowa State is another chance for the Sooners to use some of the fresh blood personnel. You hope it’s going to be enough, and then you hope it instills confidence for Stoops to use this group down the stretch run of Baylor, West Virginia and Oklahoma State.
Player to watch
Even before the suspension of running back Joe Mixon, it looked like it was going to be an interesting night for freshman running back Abdul Adams. That's going to be magnified now that he's the lone scholarship back on the roster. Adams actually led the team in rushing in the win against Kansas and has shown to handle himself well in competitive situations. It won't get any bigger for Adams than Thursday in Ames.
Best case scenario is this one is plan and dull and boring. No mid-week magic in Ames. No sloppy play by the Sooners. On a short week, go out and execute and come back home and rest up for Baylor. Not sure if it will be the best-case scenario, but really OU should be OK. There will be a couple of rocky moments, but that’s why you have leadership from guys like Baker Mayfield. OU gets it done to the tune of like 45-24 and stays undefeated in the conference.