According to the Tulsa World, the Tulsa defense has knocked out the opponent's starting quarterback on consecutive weeks, the latest happening Saturday when the Golden Hurricane sent Ryan Williams to the sideline in a 48-7 route of Memphis at Liberty Bowl Stadium.
Injuries such as those are a part of football, but they do force you to take notice of Tulsa's defense in the past two weeks. The Golden Hurricane defense seems to have confidence back after getting burned too often early in the season.
"I'm really pleased with how we played defensively and how our guys dominated the game defensively," said Tulsa coach Todd Graham. "The turnovers -- that brings back fond memories of how you ought to play defense. I'm really proud of them."
Tulsa forced a season-high four turnovers and held Memphis to 207 total yards. That's a season-low for the Golden Hurricane defense and for the Tigers offense.
Last week Tulsa allowed just 319 yards to Central Arkansas.
Certainly part of Tulsa's newfound defensive success has to be credited to the caliber of its recent opponents. Memphis has one win this year and Central Arkansas is an FCS team. But Tulsa's players can still find meaning in the performances.
"Within the last two weeks, Coach (Graham) has turned us loose and we've come out with passion and swagger," linebacker Curnelius Arnick told the Tulsa World. "We put that (Oklahoma State) game behind us and have come out with the mindset of getting focused for conference play."
There seems to be little concern about the Golden Hurricane offense. Tulsa didn't crack the 500-yard barrier for total offense, as it usually does, but that's probably because the offense had a shortened field all night. Five times Tulsa started drives in Memphis territory. Thank you, defense.
Said Graham: "One of the things was how we responded. They had the one drive where they drove it down there and they had a scheme we hadn't seen, and they didn't panic. They made the right adjustments. That was a good game for us."