Wilson talks offense, Texas Tech

Offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson talks about OU's struggling passing attack and this week's matchup against Texas Tech's defense. The Sooners passing offense (180.0 ypg) has dipped to 80th nationally and 11th in the Big 12.

Below are excerpts from OU offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson's meeting with the media on Tuesday. [b]On what they're going to do to get the passing game back on track[/b] [b]Wilson:[/b] As much as anything, just making sure in our practice format we're putting our guys in good positions and making sure Paul and our receivers are in sync and comfortable. The rhythm of last game got us a little bit out of it. We actually thought watching some other people (who had played A&M), we would have some shots that we spent a lot of time on task. The first one we took a chance on the first drive wasn't there. Paul actually threw it in the middle of the field and it was incomplete. Texas Tech is similar. They're different than Texas A&M, but they'll be similar. They score a lot of points and they play a bend but don't break style of defense. It's going to cause us to continue to be efficient, get the ball underneath, get it thrown on time and pick your spots when you take your shots. [b]On their running success without Adrian Peterson[/b] [b]Wilson:[/b] As good as Adrian is, to me you always run as a team effort. That means you're getting good blocking from the fullback-tight end spots, the receivers on the perimeter. It's a group deal and that group has gotten better and better. The line has gotten better. We're trying to put them in good spots and we need to continue that, but we also need to make sure down the stretch we have a nice blend and nice balance. Regardless of what A&M did last week, there was still some passing things that we needed to take advantage of that we didn't. [b]On having more dropped passes this year than other years[/b] [b]Wilson:[/b] We've had some drops, but all that is is something you just keep working on in practice and time on task. I think a little bit of that is a little youthful thing. You're always going to have some, but we're trying every game to minimize the penalties, minimize the turnovers, minimize the drops, minimize the sacks. The four things that we do that get you behind chains where it's more us and them. We had a couple of those Saturday and we've got to keep bringing that down. [b]On Brody Eldridge's 10 knockdowns against A&M and how well the tight ends are blocking[/b] [b]Wilson:[/b] They're doing good. Joe Jon was actually even pretty good in this game as well. When you run the ball well, everybody thinks your line's doing well. Shoot, when throw the ball well your line's doing well because they're pass blocking. And if you run the ball, you're getting pretty good blocking at tight end and the perimeter, so as always it's a group deal. I really think Brody gives us some flexibility because when he goes on the field he might be in a tight end set, he might not. We might have him bunched over in those little cluster-wing sets we do. He might be sitting back there as a fullback. He's been a nice complement. He's a young player that's not where he needs to be yet, but he battles and he plays hard. He's really doing good. [b]On Texas Tech's defense[/b] [b]Wilson:[/b] They're big up front, real strong — 4-3 defense. Bend but not break just like A&M. Maybe they support their safeties a little bit more in the run, but they make you snap it again. They pick their spots to blitz. They're not by any means a very junky defense. They're very under-appreciated defensively. If you look at their stats, they're 3, 4, 5, 6, in almost every stat in the conference in defense whether it be run defense, pass defense, points allowed, scoring conversions. They're a very good defense. I think because of Mike and their offense you always talk about how wide open they are, but they changed about three seasons ago and became more of a let's be sound, let's be solid and let's play hard defense and not give up the big play and make you go the distance and make you earn it. Last year everybody made a big deal about some of the calls at the end of the game. Well, I watched last year's tape and thought they physically took it to us and beat us up front. We didn't block well, we weren't very physical, we didn't run the ball like you needed to run. We lost offensively as much as any calls because their defense got after us. That's what I see when I watched last year's tape, and that's what I see when I watch these guys. They have two big, strong tackles, one very good defensive end, another big d-end. They're a little bit more inexperienced than they were last year. They lost their two really good safeties, a couple backers, but they play great group defense. I think it will be a little bit like it was Saturday. We might have some success, but can we sustain it for 60 minutes? They'll play a style that makes you snap it again, snap it again, snap it again and keep coming. [b]On the importance of getting the passing game back and establishing balance[/b] [b]Wilson:[/b] I was really disappointed after the game and disappointed for our guys. Selfishly, everybody wants the ball. The quarterback wants to throw it, the running back wants to run it. When your guys are battling and playing hard you want each player to also have some individual success. That's my responsibility to make sure what we're doing in practice, what we're doing in scheming, what we're doing in protection and route running, all that works at a high level. I thought it was a great win and verybody was excited, but I was a little disappointed after the game Saturday for us to not have played better. I've got to look at how we practice, what we're doing, because we have shown I think we can be pretty solid. I do think we need to be definitely balanced to continue to have success down the stretch to make this season as strong as it can. By no means do I want to be a stat guy. I think there are a lot of people that run shovel passes and bubble passes because it's passing yards. I don't care what our rushing total is, what our passing total is. You want to win, but I do know the best offense is balanced and physical and it takes care of the ball. We are being physical, but we do need to take care of the ball better. We've had two fumbles two weeks in a row in the second half that can haunt you. That needs to stop. To be a complete offense, we need to be more balanced and we'll be difficult to defend. Plus, I think it's good for our players. They know they'll get the opportunities to make the plays and get catches and get throws. I want to reward those guys because they are battling and playing hard. [b]On if the offense would change if Allen Patrick isn't ready to go on Saturday[/b] [b]Wilson:[/b] If we have a problem we'll go with Gute and Chris Brown. Mossis (Madu) is still not out of mix, even though it's late in the year. As always, we need to make sure we get that pass game going and maybe Paul gets a few more carries, maybe not. We need to run the ball, but we need to have mix and balance. We will not get away from the run if Allen Patrick is limited in any way, but at the same time we need to get both phases at a more efficient level to be a strong offense this week. [b]On if he felt like the game was taken from him last year at Texas Tech[/b] [b]Wilson:[/b] I didn't feel that after the game. For two quarters, we didn't play well. We gave it a chance to come down to that. I said the same thing at Oregon, we look at what we can control. I thought at Oregon that we had a chance to do some things that we didn't do, and I didn't a good enough job and we didn't do good enough to get in the end zone. I look at last year and we didn't play play physical up front and they took it to us. There are some things at the end of the game that maybe you would've liked to change, but I really would've liked to change the way we played during the course of that game and the way we played in the second and third quarter. That's how I look at it. When I watch last year's tape of the game, that's what I see. I see us not playing as good a football game as we needed to play to win the game. You get what you deserve and we played in a way that we got what we deserved. Whether it was a bad call, those things happen. They don't happen if you play good enough not to let those things happen. Again, I didn't feel that way after the game. I've never had any remorse because I've always been in some places — when I was at Miami of Ohio and went to Michigan you never got a call. So I'm used to not getting calls. When I was at Northwestern and you played the Buckeyes, you didn't get that call. To me, you've got to be good enough that those things aren't issues. And I was disappointed last year watching our performance during the game. I was proud of the way the kids battled and played back, but there were two quarters where we allowed that to be an issue at the end. I always look at what we need to do, and we weren't as good as we needed to be.

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