Gutierrez takes advantage of his opportunity

Redshirt freshman running Jacob Gutierrez talks about his role as a backup and the incredible 62-yard catch and run for a touchdown during Thursday night's scrimmage.

Jacob Gutierrez fans had to be on the top of the world Thursday as their man finally showed all Sooner fans what they have been talking about for some time. Gutierrez took a safety valve pass form quarterback Rhett Bomar and turned it into a 62-yard touchdown run.

On the play, Gutierrez showed all the skills that several others have been talking about, as he juked a tackler (Brett Bowers) four-yards behind the line of scrimmage, then juked another before sprinting ahead 12-yards where the defense converged on him, only to bounce off him like flies. Then, it was off to the races and with only Bowers trailing him, and too far back to make up any ground as Gutierrez had an easy sprint into the end zone.

Gutierrez is a crowd favorite and Sooner teammates and coaches love his work ethic and determination. He is still somewhat down the depth chart, but he continues to compete and try to move up that depth chart. caught up with Gutierrez after the scrimmage.

JH: You have always demonstrated great balance, and on that run that was very evident don't you think?

JG: "Thank you. I wrestled in high school and I think it has helped me out a lot with my balance. I think my small stature helps in with balance as well. And because I am low to the ground, I think it helps me. I just put my head down and I tried to keep my balance going through there."

JH: You always do extra drills after practice, and I know some of them are to improve your balance right?

JG: "I just listen to Coach Schmidt and let him come up with different drills that will improve my leg strength, agility and balance. I am just trying to get better, and I am trying to do whatever I can to improve."

JH: You had the play of the scrimmage, so talk about it.

JG: "It was a long-distance situation and I was just trying to put my head down and get the first down. I just got a little more out of it, because I was able to keep my balance on the run."

JH: What kind of pass route was it?

JG: "It was a little short route and there was an outside blitz, so Rhett dumped it out to me and it got a little deflected. I was able to catch it and fortunately able to make some yards afterwards."

JH: How did you break out of the four or five guys that seem to hit you at once down field?

JG: "I guess I just kept my balance and ran hard and came out of the middle of it. I was just trying to keep my head down and get that first down. I came out of that situation and made a touchdown out of it."

JH: You are trying to work your way up the depth chart, so how are you going to eventually get into a position to earn some playing time at OU?

JG: "We have a lot of great talent and a lot of great running backs at OU and I have to take my time and improve on what I can to improve myself. I have to try to move my way up the depth chart. I have to keep on working hard and that is the only thing I can do to put me in a position to wait my turn when it comes."

JH: You don't seem to ever get frustrated with the situation?

JG: "There is not much you can do about things that are out of your control. Like I said, all I can do is work on improving my speed and strength, and then at times hopefully you can shine in situations when they put you in."

JH: You have a lot of fans at, so what do you want to stay to those folks?

JG: "I appreciate their support. It is always great to have some people that are on your side. I just hope that I can help out the team and help the team win another National Championship and Big 12 Championship. Tell all of them thank you!

Sooners Illustrated Top Stories