OU-Kansas State Scouting Report

Tony Sellars and KSU play-by-play man Wyatt Thompson break down Saturday's matchup. Wildcat running back Thomas Clayton (pictured above) led the nation in rushing (164.5 yards per game) after the first two weeks before being suspended for last week's game against North Texas. (AP Photo/Charlie Reidel)

When Oklahoma Has The Ball:
Oklahoma's rushing offense vs. Kansa State's run defense

The Sooners have had two weeks to try and revamp the offensive line yet again. This week, Davin Joseph will line up at tackle and freshman Duke Robinson has moved inside to guard where he won't start, but should see playing time.

Adrian Peterson has also had an extra week to heal his ankle and his ego after a frustrating day at UCLA. Last season, Peterson set his career high in carries with 36 against the Wildcats and he will likely approach that again this Saturday. Coaches also would like Rhett Bomar to run more selectively and be a little less aggressive in taking on tacklers.

Kansas State has allowed over three yards per carry against less than stellar competition in their first three games, so the Sooners should be able to move the ball on the ground.

How well Oklahoma can run may be the key to this contest, according to Wildcats play-by-play man Wyatt Thompson.

"This in my mind will be a major factor in the game", said Thompson. "K-State has played the run well so far but the Big 12 competition is a different animal. I say Peterson gives OU the edge."

Oklahoma's passing offense vs. Kansas State's pass defense
Bomar appeared to gain confidence and rhythm in the last contest and with an extra week to work with the receiving corps, there are hopes that the Sooners will finally get their first passing touchdown this week.

Travis Wilson finally showed leadership in the UCLA game and freshman Juaquin Iglesias took over the other starting spot with his performance against the Bruins. The wild card is Paul Thompson, who has already moved to the second team in his first week at the position. How much he plays and how much of an impact he has will be a focal point on the contest.

Kansas State has improved in the secondary, primarily due to more aggressive play, and like most teams, will try to challenge the young OU quarterback early.

"This is an area where K-State is better than last year. Marcus Watts at FS and better corner play is the reason why", Thompson said. "Kyle Williams and Maurice Porter are sharing the SS spot, but I think Porter will play more in this game, because he is more familiar with what the Cats are doing scheme wise. OU lost a bunch of experience here, but I like Travis Wilson. This match-up would only favor the Cats due to the Sooners in-experience at QB but at home that may not be as big a factor"

When Kansas State Has The Ball:
Kansas State's rushing offense vs. Oklahoma's run defense

Thomas Clayton had established himself as a big threat in the first two games before missing the North Texas contest after off the field problems. In his absence, freshman Parrish Fisher was named Big 12 Player of the Week for his 169-yard performance against the Mean Green.

Clayton will be back in the lineup this week trying to prove his ability against a much better OU defensive line.

Quarterback Alan Webb has also been a factor in the running game, averaging more than 10 caries per game so far. The Sooners will have to be aware of his scrambling prowess.

Defending the run has been the most consistent part of Oklahoma's defense, as the Sooners have held opponents to less than 80 yards per game and just 2.3 yards per carry.

Kansas State's passing offense vs. Oklahoma's pass defense
Webb has been surprisingly effective in the air through the first three games, throwing for six touchdowns and completing almost 63 percent of his passes. He has also been intercepted three times.

Converted defender Jordy Norman is the top receiving threat, with 11 catches and three touchdowns so far. Speedsters Jermaine Moreira and Yamon Figurs also play key roles in the passing game, as does Clayton.

The Sooners have been working on being more aggressive in their coverage this week and senior Eric Bassey will get his first start at cornerback. Pass coverage should also be helped by the return of linebacker Clint Ingram but OU needs to get a pass rush to help out.

Special Teams Performers
Moreira and Figurs are both dangerous return men, each averaging over 10 yards per punt return, and Moreira has already run one back for a score. He's also averaging over 30 yards per kickoff return.

Kicker Jeff Snodgrass has a powerful leg, as evidenced by his 57-yard field goal against North Texas last week. He's 3-for-3 inside of 40 yards as well. Punter Tim Reyer has struggled, averaging 40 yards a kick, but he's already had one blocked and one run back for a touchdown.

The Sooners have struggled on punt returns and this week Jejuan Rankins returns to that duty after recovering from an ankle injury. Reggie Smith has joined Travis Wilson in returning kickoffs, giving Oklahoma a potent duo in that department.

Kick coverage has been solid for the Sooners and punter Cody Freeby has not allowed many punts to be returned. Kicker Garrett Hartley has been inconsistent to this point and needs to get more distance on his kickoffs.

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