Florence, Baylor fall 42-34 to No. 14 Sooners
NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — After his worst passing performance of the season, Nick Florence didn't blame a steady wind that was a factor in Baylor's loss to Oklahoma. He blamed himself.
Florence, the nation's leading passer, was limited to a season-low 172 yards in the Bears' 42-34 loss to the No. 14 Sooners on Saturday night. He completed only 12 of 33 attempts, missing out on a couple of potential touchdowns with south winds measured at 26 mph at kickoff and not letting up much during the game.
"There's no excuses. Yeah, the wind was doing some funky stuff, but we practice in the wind and everyone has to deal with it," said Florence, who was averaging 377 yards passing. "I missed those throws and we're usually making them."
Counterpart Landry Jones threw for 277 yards and two touchdowns, Damien Williams ran for 99 yards and two scores and Oklahoma moved coach Bob Stoops into sole possession of second place on the school's career wins list with the victory.
"They did a good job defensively, but we made a lot of mistakes. If I complete even 30 percent of those long balls to (Terrance Williams) it's a different ball game," Florence said. "I just couldn't find it tonight."
Florence had completed at least 58 percent of his passes and thrown for at least 289 yards in every game this season until Saturday, when he frequently missed downfield passes — including overshooting an open Tevin Reese in the end zone with Baylor trailing 42-26 early in the fourth quarter.
That drive instead ended with the Bears turning the ball over on downs.
"I thought our guys played valiantly. We played with a lot of effort, a lot of heart and a lot of confidence," Bears coach Art Briles said. "We thought we were going to come in here and win the football game, just like every game we play. Against a team like that you can't afford to give them anything."
Stoops moved into sole possession of second place on the school's wins list by passing Bud Wilkinson, who was 145-29-4 and won three national championships with the Sooners.
"What he did here is absolutely amazing. The (NCAA record 47-game) win streak is really just incredible. I don't believe it'll ever be touched again, and the national championships, the sustained success for so long," Stoops said.
"I don't look at numbers, to be honest with you. It's just not me. I'm a long way from sitting in a rocking chair and reflecting on it."
At 146-36, Stoops trails only Barry Switzer's 157-29-4 record that's the best in Oklahoma history. Switzer also won three national titles. Stoops has won one and is just trying to keep the Sooners in contention for a BCS at-large bid or longshot Big 12 title this season.
Lache Seastrunk ran for 91 yards and three touchdowns for Baylor (4-5, 1-5 Big 12), the last score getting the Bears within eight with 1:26 to play after Florence got in on the 2-point conversion.