Casey Walker had no clue there were seven defensive backs on the field behind him when Oklahoma started its game against West Virginia on Saturday.
Like any defensive lineman, his eyes were looking at the Mountaineers' line and their quarterback, Geno Smith. He wasn't really aware of what was going on in the secondary.
That is, until he realized that wide-receiver-turned-running-back Tavon Austin kept running around the field and scoring touchdowns. That's when Walker realized there was no Tom Wort on the field.
"I didn't know anything about it until I was on the field and I didn't see Tom," Walker said "I did not know that there were no linebackers out there. It kind of surprised me."
What shocked him even more were the 572 all-purpose yards Austin compiled in the game.
“I had to give them props,” Walker said. “I tweeted at them after the game to tell them what respect I have for them.”
As for that seven-defensive-back scheme, it led to 20 missed tackles — a number that Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops said the defense hasn't come near in a long time.
So, will Sooner fans be seeing Wort and Corey Nelson this weekend at linebacker or will there be seven DBs to defend Oklahoma State's star running back Joseph Randle?
“Uh, I don't know,” Oklahoma defensive coordinator Mike Stoops said Monday. “That didn't work so good.”
STILLS: JEFFERSON TWEETED APOLOGY BECAUSE HE CARES WHAT FANS THINK
Following Oklahoma's 50-49 win at West Virginia, junior safety Tony Jefferson tweeted an apology to fans for the defense's performance, and for his individual play.
Receiver Kenny Stills is close friends with Jefferson, and said the tweet was sincere.
“He was disappointed in the way he played individually,” Stills said. “You've got to understand, if you have 15,000 followers or whatever he has and all of them are saying, ‘You (stink)', he wants to apologize and say, ‘I expect better from myself also.'”
Jefferson leads the Sooners in tackles and is widely considered one of the team's best players. He, Stills and Brennan Clay are California natives, and were part of the same recruiting class.
The three friends have called themselves the “Cali Trio.”
“He has a lot of pride individually, but he has a lot of respect for what the fans think of him,” Stills said. “It's the same with me and Brennan. We've always been the guys that are fan friendly and for him, his pride kind of came out. He wanted everyone to know that. He apologized for the way he played and he felt like he could have done better.”
DETROIT TIGERS DRAFTED BLAKE BELL OUT OF HIGH SCHOOL
Blake Bell's athletic ability is obvious; his Belldozer package has made him an Oklahoma cult hero, and he's become heir apparent to starting quarterback Landry Jones.
Like most college athletes, Bell was at one time a three-sport standout. He played football, basketball and baseball at Bishop Carroll High in Wichita, Kan., but dropped baseball his junior year.
But here's an interesting, little-known fact about the future OU starting quarterback: Even though he didn't throw a single pitch after his sophomore year of high school, the Detroit Tigers used a 2010 draft pick on Bell.
The Tigers drafted Bell in the MLB Draft's 43rd round, with the 1,303rd overall pick.
“We decided to get out his junior year because that's when he started going to these camps for quarterbacks,” said his dad, Mark Bell. “We had to put the baseball down to work on throwing and get his motion going. Don't want to go into those camps rusty.”
Did Blake ever even slightly consider playing for the Tigers after being drafted?
“No,” Mark Bell said. “His love and passion is football. He really liked basketball too, but his passion was football.”