Stoops on Oregon

Oklahoma Head Coach Bob Stoops talks about Saturday's matchup with Oregon and other topics during his weekly press conference Tuesday in Norman. (Photo courtesy of

Below is a transcript of Oklahoma Head Coach Bob Stoops' weekly press conference with the media Tuesday in Norman.

On Saturday's matchup with Oregon
"Really looking forward to our last non-conference game here with Oregon, who is a very good football team regardless of what everyone wants to say about last week. We watched all their games from a year ago.

"You look at their point production through last year, and really every year that Coach (Mike) Bellotti and his staff have been there. They lead the Pac-10 virtually every year in scoring and production on offense. They're a team that plays very good defense, very solid, structured. You look at their track record and success, not only for a few years, for a great number of years that he's been there. The last four years they had 11, 10 wins and eight last year.

"I know last week's game they had seven turnovers. They realize that's not going to happen every week and they will make corrections there. We know they're very capable, very strong team. They have a great number of starters back. Four offensive line starters are big guys up front, a great tight end, and an excellent quarterback that's gaining experience through last year. They're very balanced.

"Defensively, very good front four up front. Solid guys with excellent strength up there. Very structured and disciplined in how they play. We recognize it as a big challenge. And I believe our guys are looking forward to it realizing this is going to be a big game."

On what Oregon tries to do offensively
"Oregon has been very explosive. Coach Bellotti, in the nine years he's been there, they've scored a lot of points. They give multiple formations and personnel groups and have an excellent attack. Very wise and smart in how they try and attack you and make their yards and score their points. More conventional than what we've seen the last two weeks, but very diverse in what they do — one-back, two-back sets, multiple tight ends and receivers. They give you about everything. It's been an excellent attack, so we'll have to to work hard and be sharp to be able to hold them down."

On Oregon's turnover problems against Indiana
"I don't believe they'll do that every week. That's just something that for whatever reason happened. I think we go into each and every week trying to cause turnovers and force them and do our best to create them."

On if a week of working on not turning the ball over will help Oregon this week
"I don't know. I haven't studied it, but sometimes you can harp on it so much that's all you're thinking about and it doesn't help you either. I don't know what the right answer is there. I've never studied it.

On if playing Oregon after a loss concerns him
"Why would it? The game's scheduled, I want to say, year's in advance. This one isn't that long, just months in advance. It's on the schedule. You play them as they come and it will be that way the rest of the year. We don't really much concern ourselves with things we don't have any control over. We've got a lot we want to accomplish as well, so that's what we focus on and try and in the best position to do it."

On if he's concerned about any phases game after the first two wins
"I think, as a coach, we're always concerned that you have to keep improving. Two games is all it is. It's two games. We realize as time goes and as your competition continues to be more difficult and tougher, that you've got to keep improving and do everything that you've been doing well either as well or better. That's my concern, is that we keep pushing to improve. And I believe we will since it is awful early."

On if the defensive players busting assignments is attributed to the new season or the types offenses they've faced the first two weeks
"It's both. It's not unlike every year we've been here in our first couple of games. There's always some ironing out to do and guys getting familiar with adjustments. I don't recall a year I've every coached where early on that hasn't been somewhat of an issue, and I don't believe it's a big one. But again, we want to be perfect and that's what we're pushing for."

On defensive tackle Carl Pendleton's first start and play against Houston
"I thought Carl was excellent and really has been good in both games. Carl is an excellent athlete. His conditioning is fantastic. He just keeps getting better. He still has ways to go. Carl's a guy — the way he works, his toughness, his attitude and his physical abilities — he's going to keep improving as the year goes. Very pleased and excited about the way he's playing as a redshirt freshman."

On their success with trick plays and when they determine to use them
"It's a feel thing. We've had many games where we've had one, maybe two ready to go and you don't use them. In some situations it feels right, and it isn't me calling them. It's Coach Long and offensive coaches. If I didn't feel it was the right situation or didn't like it, I would chime in and say I don't want to do that. We usually have one or maybe two ready to go, but it doesn't mean we'll always use them."

On if Remi Ayodele is playing better at defensive tackle
"Yes he has. He had an excellent game there against Houston — had a nice sack or two. He's been active and made improvement from the first game, which you would hope. He's making improvement and works hard at it, so I think he'll continue to improve as he goes through the year."

On the chances of Kejuan Jones and Adrian Peterson being in the game at the same time
"Possibly. We've done that before with Renaldo (Works) and Kejuan and Renaldo and Quentin (Griffin). There's a possibility of that. It just gets down to the design of your plays."

On if J.D. Runnels success as a blocker keeps them from putting two tailbacks in at once
"Sure. The only way you'd want two tailbacks in there is when one is not blocking for the other. Obviously, we'd need to be able to figure out who's getting the ball and be able to run different plays with them. None of those guys can block like J.D., that's for sure. But defenses know that, so what you gain sometimes isn't worth what you're giving up. J.D. is one of the best players we have on this team and he shows that about every week."

On if Tommy Grady's performance re-insured their faith in him as the backup
"Sure. Tommy was very poised and accurate and handled the situation wonderfully. It was as good as you could hope for in a guys first time out there with the stadium full and lights on and cameras on. He was very solid and went through his reads really well. He handled the huddle and all of the mechanics really well. It was very pleasing."

On if they change the offense in the fourth quarter
"It depends. I think it was obvious the other night we weren't throwing the ball downfield. Basically, all we did on that 97-yard drive is we only threw the ball to pick up a first down. They were all short throws, 10-12 yards and under. We were trying to use the clock and didn't want to pile up points. But wanted to give them a chance to play and execute. There's a lot more deep balls that Tommy is as fine as throwing them as anybody that we didn't use. There's was only a limited part of that that we used because of the situation, not because of what Tommy is capable of."

On if he thinks there will come a point in the season if White stays healthy and Grady plays well, that they won't consider bringing Paul Thompson out of his redshirt if something should happen late in the season
"I don't look at that. I've got this week to play. We'll go through this week the best we can and get ourself in position to win and then we'll go to the next week. I don't look at anything that way. You have to make decisions as you go."

On defenses not blitzing White after talk this summer of that being how to stop the Heisman Trophy winner
"We go through this debate every week and everybody's got the magical formula. One week it's that and then someone gets ripped doing that. And then the next week it's cover them all. We go through the year and everybody will do a little bit of everything, and a lot of teams will give you both. And that's not unusual. We're used to it and ready for it every week. There's risk and dangers in each and that's why you play. That's what the game is. It's who can beat what. We're ready for it every week and we work for it every week."

On the national media taking White for granted
"As you watch around the country and watch everybody play, you don't see a lot of people that efficient and strong and capable. I think that can happen, yes. The guy, just in every part of the game — the huddle, the presence, the leadership, the communication, everything it takes to get the snap off — is just as good as he can be. Then the guy is just so accurate. And now with the ability to avoid the rush and scramble as well as he throws in the pocket, he's every bit as good or better on the run. It gives him one more dimension now as well."

On if he knew White could throw as well on the run before Saturday
"We've seen that. He's been around a couple of years, so we've been able to see that through time."

On how much more they will let him throw on the run in the offense
"We'll see. It gives you some flexibility at times to get him out of the pocket and on the edge. We're doing that some, but as we go that will continue to be a part of what we're trying to do.

"We don't rely on scrambles to win for us. We rely on efficiency and being in there and putting the ball out on time, but it doesn't always work that way. But last year, sure, he didn't have the confidence and wasn't capable of avoiding people in that way. As much as even dropping back from center was more difficult, which makes it even more amazing what the guy was able to do."

On White knowing when to get out and run
"In just a couple of games he's got a good feel for it. He doesn't do it too quick, ever. Usually, it's a last split-second move or desperation move to avoid it and see if he can make something happen."

On how he would stop Oklahoma's offense
"Like we do about everybody else. We pick and choose when we come and when we don't. Sometimes we cover, sometimes we blitz. That's our M.O with about everybody. It's not easy for a team who has a personality and a way they like to defend to all of the sudden say, 'Well in this game we're going to do this.' If that's not what they're used to doing, it's not all that easy to do. You have to be who you are. It's hard for one week to be somebody else."

On the special teams play
"It's been solid. Some areas we are critical of still need to improve. In particular, our punt return unit has been pretty strong. Guys are hustling to make their blocks and finish their blocks downfield. There's been a few guys like Chijioke Onyenegecha, who's been fabulous out there and just really working hard on this guy. 'Perk' knows if you let 10 guys running free down there you're not going to get a yard, and those guys are holding people up and creating seams for him."

On Eric Bassey and the other corner spot opposite Perkins
"He's doing well. He's had two solid games and is playing in a good way. I would say, just through practice and as he's played in games, Chijioke has still played awfully well too and has earned playing time. How that splits up I think is just a feel on how they practice that week and how the game's going. I'd say those guys right now, Chijioke's the closest to earning that time and is doing well also. What's encouraging is he's earned the time, not through default or someone not doing well. He's just played so well in our scrimmages and when he's been on special teams that he's making plays that he's also earned some time playing on the field as well. How they respond when they're out there and who's making what plays determines how much more time they get."

On the competition at wide receiver
"They're all very capable. I don't need to name them all, you all know who they are. They're all capable of big plays, they can all run and make you miss them when they have the ball. I think what's great is we use them all. Through an 80-play game, they all get their share of snaps and no one really gets too run down. So, they're usually strong in the fourth quarter and at top speed. I think that helps us."

On the Big 12's disappointing start
"I'm not one speak on other teams. I'm not there, I'm not in the situations. I only get to see parts of the game because we're getting ready to play. It's a league that you better be ready to play each and every week. We see it every week watching TV. You've got to be ready to play to win and you better be at your best. Around the country, not just in the Big 12, it's difficult. It's not easy to win every week. You've got to be prepared to play and you have to play at your best."

On if Kejuan Jones is OK for Saturday
"Should be. Talking to him yesterday and seeing him move around, he should be."

On Davin Joseph's availability for this weekend
"In all likelihood, it appears to be that everybody right now looks like they should be able to go."

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