Texas' loss to UCLA and Oklahoma's early struggles cost the teams a bigger platform for their annual Red River shootout. No "College GameDay." No Brent Musburger and Kirk Herbstreit.
However, the broadcast team of Brad Nessler, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe proved to be an excellent consolation prize with their excellent call of the game. Nessler, a step up from Musburger, who overhypes the game, had some particularly colorful phrases.
Late in the game after Landry Jones' fumble on a busted play that fortunately for the Sooners went out of bounds, Nessler said, "You talk about a busted play! That was almost a busted game!"
On DeMarco Murray's run down the left sideline for OU's final touchdown, "Talk about a tightrope act down the sideline... Then it was a Flying Wallenda into the end zone."
Blackledge, a former Penn State quarterback, was well-schooled on the Sooners' offense. But he was premature in complimenting the Sooners "on an impressive win" before the game was over. After the Sooners held on for the victory, he noted OU seems to struggle in the fourth quarter this season. "Oklahoma likes to make it interesting in the fourth quarter. That's their M.O. this season. But 5-0 is 5-0."
Before the game, he said OU needed to get the ball to playmakers Ryan Broyles and Murray, and late in the game called Murray "the best guy on the field today."
The broadcast had a few flaws. The directors missed part of a play after going to a replay in OU's high-tempo offense and showed too many shots of Texas quarterback Garrett Gilbert's father, former NFL quarterback Gale Gilbert in the stands. Blackledge's regular "Taste of the Town" segment was cut way back, and didn't mention all the interesting fried food available in the Texas State Fair's midway.
* CBS' crew of Craig Bolerjack and Steve Beuerlein had the most bizarre finish in the Tennessee-LSU game. The pair blasted LSU coach Les Miles for poor clock management when the Tigers appeared to have lost the game on a botched snap on a haphazard play. But because the Volunteers had too many players on the field, LSU got another chance and the Tigers escaped with a 16-14 victory on Stevan Ridley's 1-yard TD run. Roared Bolerjack, "A miracle! A miracle in Baton Rouge! Can you believe it?" Added Beuerlein, "A gift from Tennessee after the game was won."
* FSN analyst Dave Lapham on Baylor's 55-7 rout of Kansas. "Art Briles' teams always play hard and with passion. Today they didn't make mistakes. When they do that, they are capable of hanging a half a hundred on somebody."
* ESPN analyst Craig James when asked by play-by-play announcer Mike Patrick on what Michigan State should do facing a fourth-and-goal on the Wisconsin 1: "Text Mark Dantonio." The Spartans head coach was forced to miss the game due to complications after his heart surgery.