The Oklahoma Sooners start fast but did not have enough to hold off the Red Raiders from an overtime victory.
QB – If you were to show me a 28/40 stat line with well-over 400 yards passing and six touchdowns, I would follow up by asking if the game was in Lubbock. Feels like an annual tradition now that QBs go down there and put up numbers. However, the story was the same. Not converting on 3rd downs, short yardage, and not connecting on the easy play limited the offense and led to the loss. That being said, he did enough to get the Sooners to 48.
RB/HB/TE – Any back not named Eric Gray was not incredibly effective for the Sooners in this one. Gray was the man yet again, displaying the attributes he’s continued to show all season. If there was more contribution elsewhere, the grade would be higher. Willis finally showcased some of the skills that have improved his draft stock but a key drop on special teams lowered the grade as well.
OL – The consistency of the offensive line has been an issue all season. Guyton saw significant playing time in this one and seemed to hold up for a large portion of the game. Harrison also showed why he’s become a top tackle in the conference. If OU can keep their three main tackles and improve the interior, this offensive line is on its way to being in Joe Moore contention again but the limitations were there inside and you just can’t get around how it impacts the run game.
WR – Have yourself a day, Theo Wease! Just as the season comes to an end, Wease showed off some of the skills we all expected when he arrived in Norman. The playmaker still was, and has been, Marvin Mims. Farooq had a key drop down the right sideline and Drake Stoops was rarely found all night as he runs a number of concepts over the middle that OU has not been able to connect on.
DL/DE – This is where I wish I had split these grades up when I first started doing this. The interior continues to improve, and even without Coe, was relatively effective all evening. The edge players found some success early but down the stretch, as they have all season, were always a few steps out of position and allows the play to go for more yardage as a lineman gets to those critical second-level blocks.
LB – Last week against OSU, this group played some of their best ball. In this one, not so much. As with the game against the Pokes, they got off to a decent start but once the momentum swung in Lubbock, it never got back on track. There will be massive questions for this group going forward. Depth, playmakers, leaders. These are the roles OU will have to fill with this unit. Even though Stutsman led the team in tackles, it felt like empty stats.
Grade: D –
Secondary – As with the backers, this group had a solid outing one week ago against the Cowboys but there were too many easy passes and big plays in this one to warrant a high grade. While there were the occasional highlights, such as Coldon creating plays, there were far too many missed tackles on the edge and at the second level which contributed to major gains. Bowman will avenge this. perform down the road but there will be decisions to make for everyone else in the secondary from the previous regime.
Special Teams – Even though the opening kickoff did not amount to much, it still exists. While Turk continued to do Turk things, the fake field goal was there for the taking, and had he been able to remain collected back there, could have made a slightly better toss. Still on Willis to make the grab but we have to bring it up. Schmitt has been very consistent and sometimes they just don’t go your way.