Oklahoma football: WHO put the ball in Tavon Austin’s hands?
OU took a 50-49 lead on West Virginia with 24 seconds left in the darndest game any of us ever saw, and still the outcome seemed in doubt. Because with Tavon Austin on the field, anything seemed possible for the Mountaineers.
Austin had rushed for 344 yards, caught passes for 82 more yards and was en route to 572 all-purpose yards, just seven shy of an NCAA record. And in those final 24 seconds, a coach put the ball in Austin’s hands.
That coach was not West Virginia’s Dana Holgorsen. That coach was Bob Stoops.
A wild and crazy game didn’t stop its wildness or its craziness after Landry Jones’ five-yard touchdown pass to Kenny Stills gave the Sooners the lead.
Stoops ordered a deep kickoff, which he knew would be fielded by Austin, a galloping ghost of a runner who on Saturday rarely was corralled by the Sooners. OU had kicked off eight times to that point; seven had been returned by Austin.
It seems madness to put the ball in the hands of a runner who had reeled off gains from scrimmage of 31, 74, 56, 54 and 47 yards.
But that’s what Stoops did.
“I didn’t even think about it,” Stoops said. His coaches asked him, and Stoops said he said, “Kick it deep. We’ve been covering ‘em. Gotta do it again.”
True enough. Austin had returned seven kickoffs for a total of 128 yards, an 18.3-yard average. Seven kickoffs is a lot of data. And sure enough, Austin returned that final kick 18 yards, to the West Virginia 23-yard line.
Message Sent Successfully
Be Sure to Check Out Our Top Headlines
- 17023OKC Central: Architectural "Worsts"
- 16448Oklahoma baseball: Joe Simpson 'thrilled' that Sunny Golloway left OU
- 12708Oklahoma storms: Profile of Life: Megan and Case Futrell
- 12580Classen School of Advanced Studies valedictorian disappears while hiking with family in Ecuador
- 9471Was Special Treatment Given in Oklahoma Vice Mayor DUI Traffic Stop?
- 7819Live blog: "The Voice" Season 4 live finale
- 7691Two teacher programs at Oklahoma universities called ineffective
- 7125Red meat might be delicious, but not as nutritious
- 6963Train engineer's vision problems led to deadly Oklahoma wreck, NTSB rules
- 6749Oklahoma State football: Mike Gundy lifts Wes Lunt restrictions, but too late
Back to share with a friend form.
Add More Recipients