OU football: What a difference three points make
What a difference three points make. Or six points. Oklahoma lost to Texas Tech 41-38 Saturday night, and while there are myriad reasons for the OU defeat, field-goal kicking is not a bad place to start. Michael Hunnicut missed a 39-yarder and a 28-yarder, the latter in the closing minutes, when OU trailed by 10.
If OU had somehow had rallied to win that game, it would have caused massive celebration and we would be writing about what great intestinal fortitude the Sooners showed to come back, even though clearly all the warts that we now analyze still would have been apparent.
It’s all true, win or lose. The Sooners did play poorly. They were dominated much of the night. Tech was a superior team. But the Sooners did fight hard to get back in the game, after trailing 31-7 early in the third quarter.
“I appreciate the players hung in there, battled back,” Bob Stoops said. “Gave us a chance to win or tie at the end.”
Only twice has OU rallied from a deficit as big as 21 points:
* Trailed Kansas State 21-0 in 1981 but rallied to win 28-21.
* Trailed Iowa State 21-0 in 1970 but won 29-28.
OU also trailed Texas 21-0 in 1995 but managed a 24-24 tie.
Of course, getting most of the way back doesn’t mean squat in the grand scheme. Talking about character looses oomph when players like Travis Lewis start criticizing teammates moments after the game. Sources say the OU locker room was pretty testy, with players’ expressing frustrations at each other.
So whatever good came from at least fighting back to make it interesting? Gone. The Sooners will be starting at ground zero and will have to build back their belief this week. It can’t be manufactured on Saturday. It has to have developed all week.
All because of three points, which are lost on overthrows and dropped passes and missed coverages and missed tackles, but most apparently lost on missed field goals.
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