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Berry Tramel: No defense -- With offensive stars injured, Sooners fail to get a stop when they need it most

by Berry Tramel Modified: October 4, 2009 at 4:17 pm •  Published: October 4, 2009

/> Meanwhile, Harris, the gangly sophomore who was so erratic early with two toss-it-up interceptions, was salty down the stretch. He completed 17 of his final 24 passes for 185 yards and three touchdowns.

Bob Stoops was left to admit that his team, his defense, just didn’t get it done.

"No denying that,” Stoops said. "It was very evident, we just couldn’t come up with a play.”

As usual, gallows will be built in 77 counties today to string up offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson. But just exactly what was Wilson supposed to call with Bradford, Gresham and Broyles out?

Would the Sooners have won with a healthy Bradford? Sure. Would they have won with a nearly-healthy Bradford? Probably. But what the heck does that have to do with anything? This is big-boy football. Play who you got and no excuses.

Tailbacks DeMarco Murray and Chris Brown produced periodic big plays, but not enough. This is a wounded offense. This is a team that had to win with defense against a good foe in enemy territory.

And the truth is, the defense wasn’t up to the task. It will not go down in history with Stoops’ 2000 or 2001 defenses. Not going to be the kind of defense that can carry sagging teammates to victory in tough times.

"They get their plays, you get yours,” Stoops said with a hint of resignation. "That’s the way it goes when you play another good football team.”

That’s what Oklahoma is. Just another good football team. Only the expectations were great.

Berry Tramel: 405-760-8080; Berry Tramel can be heard Monday through Friday from 4:40-5:20 p.m. on The Sports Animal radio network, including AM-640 and FM-98.1.

by Berry Tramel
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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