The Sooners are 5-0 against one of the more difficult schedules. But because of several close wins many national analysts still don't list Oklahoma among the top candidates to play for the national title.
"That's fine," coach Bob Stoops said Monday during the Big 12 teleconference. "At this point in the year we're not. But the better teams continue to grow and get better through the year. It is true we've played one of the tougher non-conference schedules. That was talked about quite a bit. We're 5-0 with an off week.
"In the end we're still a work in progress. I like that to be quite honest with you. To not play your best and beat a good Texas team is always a good thing. It doesn't really matter. We're all going to keep playing. We've all got a bunch of games to come. We'll see how we're able to keep maturing and growing."
Looking back at OU's 28-20 win over Texas, Stoops said it should help the Sooners' confidence.
"Definitely. Absolutely," Stoops said. "In every game there are always areas you're making improvement or showing strides and other areas creep up where you need to work a little better.
"But overall the ability to run the football was a huge plus. We got pressure to their quarterback a couple of different times. (Quarterback) Landry Jones continues to play great. The last two games on the road he's had great games."
Running back DeMarco Murray rushed for 115 yards and two touchdowns against Texas. Murray also is OU's second leading receiver with 20 catches. Many are swing passes. But Murray also occasionally lines up in the slot.
"We've always had that plan for DeMarco," Stoops said. "He has great hands and great ability to run routes, be out in space. On kickoff returns he's had some big plays. In most all these games he's been over 100 yards, or 150 to 200 in all-purpose yards. That's important. We want to get him the ball in different ways, not just running it."
OU has a bye this week and will host Iowa State at 6 p.m. on Oct. 16. Stoops said it's an opportunity for players like safety Jonathan Nelson (hip) and cornerback Jamell Fleming (ankle) to heal.
Stoops said defensive tackle Casey Walker, who suffered a sprained knee against Cincinnati, will need more time.
"Everyone would have been ready to go this week except Casey," Stoops said. "Casey has at least four weeks coming."
The bye week will allow the Sooners to "clean up a few things."
"It's a really good time to have it, simply to rest and regroup and get ready for the second half of the season," Stoops said. "It works out well this year."