OU football: Taking stock of the moments that defined the Sooners' season

TRAVIS HANEY COMMENTARY — Kenny Stills performance vs. Florida State and Jamell Fleming's strip-and-score were among the top moments of this University of Oklahoma football season.
BY TRAVIS HANEY, Staff Writer, thaney@opubco.com Published: January 1, 2012

Funny how a football season can feel simultaneously like a long and short interval of time.

In some senses, it feels like the fall dragged on for ages for Oklahoma. In some senses, we blinked and it was over.

Before we move forward, let's look back.

A few moments that, to me, defined the 2011 season.

Stills saves Sooners in Tallahassee (Sept. 17)

OU passed the first early-season test at Florida State, but it wasn't easy. The Seminoles had rallied to tie the game until two great fourth-quarter plays pushed the Sooners back in front for good.

Landry Jones' throw to Ryan Broyles on third-and-long was perhaps the best he made all year. He underthrew Kenny Stills on the next play, but Stills elevated to make the game-winning touchdown catch.

Fleming's strip-and-score in Dallas (Oct. 8)

Stoops joked Saturday that fans often tell him they'll always be happy with a season, so long as OU beats Texas. That was tested in 2011, to be sure.

The Sooners not only beat Texas; they lit up the Horns in a 55-17 victory.

And this was a (marginally) better Texas team, too. How demoralizing was it when Jamell Fleming ripped the ball from Mike Davis' arms and ran the other way for the touchdown? Talk about an exclamation on the day.

Broyles has his day in Kansas (Oct. 15)

Of course Broyles set the NCAA's career receptions record on a long touchdown. It was fitting.

What a career he had, a truly special player in the history of a storied program. He should teach a class on getting open. He does it better than anyone I've ever seen.

Red Raiders stun OU at Owen Field (Oct. 22)

Perhaps the most surprising loss of the college football season, or in Bob Stoops' career. How did Texas Tech, one of only two Big 12 teams that didn't go bowling, go up 31-7 at Owen Field when the Sooners hadn't lost there since 2005?

Weird, even now. More than anything, it showed OU struggled with bringing “it” week in and week out.

But Broyles' career has unhappy ending (Nov. 5)



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