Defensive Battle

In a rivalry match-up famous for its 1971 Game of the Century, battles between perennial powers OU and Nebraska have most always centered on hard-hitting defenses and which one plays better.

When the Sooners and Huskers kick off in a little while, this game figures to be no different.

In fact, in terms of the caliber of defensive linemen on both teams, it is set to be an epic battle up front, highlighted obviously by OU junior defensive tackle Gerald McCoy and Nebraska's senior defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, both projected to go in the top 10 in next year's NFL Draft.

For how good it will be, though, just consider McCoy's comments as he approached the media this week.

Admitting that the two players' roles are key, instead of completely skipping the topic, he immediately said he just wouldn't answer any more questions about the No. 93 in Suh that echoes him on the other side of the ball. "[I'm not going to talk about him] because he's on defense," McCoy said. "What do you want me to say?"

But truly they are similar players that both anchor their defensive fronts and will have a tremendous impact on what team comes out on top.

"Not being around him every day, it's hard to [say for sure him similar they are], but just watching how productive and how tough he plays in there, they are similar type players," said OU head coach Bob Stoops.

But aside from that, the truth is, the Huskers, like the Sooners, have a great front four, including three other extremely talented players to complement Suh.

Defensive tackle Jared Crick, as well as ends Barry Turner and Pierre Allen round out that group.

"It really is, and really their whole front [is strong]," said OU head coach Bob Stoops. "I look at their whole defensive front, and it isn't just their tackles. Their defensive ends are really playing well."

It's an intriguing matchup with all the talent up front, to say the least.

"Well, I mean, the battle is going to be won up front regardless of which team it is, so whoever the most physical is up front on both sides of the ball will win the game," McCoy said.

Both fronts have pressured opponents' offenses throughout their first eight games.

OU has racked up 27 sacks for 153 yards, while NU has 25 for 165.

So, Suh and McCoy are the players to watch, but the other players on the lines can create havoc as well, and it should be a great battle at game time.

"[There are] good, strong players up there that are talented and play a physical game, so it will be exciting to watch," Stoops said.

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