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Berry Tramel: Josh Heupel will go with what works best for Sooners

by Berry Tramel Published: April 10, 2011

NORMAN — We've reached Spring Game week in Oklahoma. Which means Josh Heupel's offense will be back on display.

Heupel's debut as Bob Stoops' offensive chief was quite interesting. Heupel ordered up 49 passes in a Fiesta Bowl rout of Connecticut. In a game OU dominated and led comfortably most of the game, Heupel's pass/run ratio was way higher than all but two Kevin Wilson games: the losses to Missouri and Texas A&M, when the Sooners trailed most of the way.

One of three things explains Heupel's pass-happiness:

1. UConn's defense prompted such a game plan.

2. Heupel is the same kind of wing-it coordinator he was as a wing-it quarterback for the early Stoops Sooners.

3. Fun in the sun. Just letting the guys have a good time in the desert.

“It wasn't having fun in the sun,” Heupel said with a chuckle. “That's probably not how we're going to do things around here.”

No, probably not. But while Heupel said Landry Jones' 49 throws indeed were the result of UConn's defensive structure, Stoops said it probably was a little of all three.

The fun-in-the-sun was really just fun-in-the-interview room. And of course, defensive structure will decide offensive attack. So this really comes down to a simple question.

Will Heupel's philosophy differ dramatically from Kevin Wilson's?

Will Heupel's background — more than spread-it-out, air-it-out than Wilson's — mean a new look for the Sooner offense?

“We're going to be very similar to what we've always done,” Stoops said. “In the spring, you evaluate and see what players are really going to do what. You try to play to your players' strengths. What your quarterback does best. From there, your tailback.”

Heupel has the same quarterback, Landry Jones, as Wilson used the previous two years. Tailback will be a change, with DeMarco Murray gone.

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