WACO, Texas — After his team was battered 41-12 by Baylor on Thursday night, Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops sat down and tried to explain what happened.
He didn't have a lot of answers.
The coaching staff will evaluate things in the coming days, he said. There could be changes.
Quarterback won't be one of them.
“It's not his fault,” Stoops said of Sooners quarterback Blake Bell. “Blake's not a guy we're looking to change.”
Bell hasn't been the model of consistency this season.
He was excellent against Tulsa, at Notre Dame and close to that against Texas Tech.
He was less than stellar against TCU, Texas and again against Baylor.
Bell completed 15 of his 35 passes against the Bears, throwing for a touchdown and a pair of interceptions.
“We were just off a little bit,” Bell said. “The play clock kept running down and we had a couple delay of games, penalty here and a penalty there. I'd miss a throw or throw an interception or we'd have a drop. Something was just going wrong.”
Although Bell is the guy moving forward, Sooners coaches showed a willingness to do some different things at time.
On the second drive of the game, redshirt freshman Trevor Knight came in to start the series and ran the zone read, rushing for 9 yards, getting stopped for no gain on second down and giving way to the Belldozer formation on third down. Bell was stopped for a loss for another three-and-out.
Knight wound up carrying the ball five times, finishing with 17 yards.
Co-offensive coordinator Josh Heupel said the package using Knight wasn't an indication of what the offense would be in the future but a grouping specific to Baylor.
“There was a couple of things that we wanted to try to take advantage of in the run game. I thought Trevor gave us an opportunity to do a couple of different things,” Heupel said. “Obviously it didn't work out as well as we wanted tonight.”
After the game, former Oklahoma quarterback Charles Thompson called into a local postgame show advocating that his son, third-string quarterback Kendal Thompson, get a chance to run the offense.
Thompson was hurt on the first day of practice and hasn't seen action this season.
Center Gabe Ikard didn't blame the loss on Bell but said the passing game has to improve.
“They give you what they give you and you've got to make it work, but our quarterbacks and our wide receivers didn't connect well enough to make them respect us throwing the ball deep,” Ikard said. “Overall, offensive line, running backs, wide receivers, quarterbacks, everybody out there on the offensive side of the football, we didn't play well enough to beat Baylor especially but beat anyone.”
The Bears dared Bell and the Sooners receivers to beat them and they didn't.
Oklahoma was just 4 of 17 on third downs and 3 for 11 on Bell pass calls. He once threw short of the first-down marker and was sacked on another.
“From the very beginning, I felt like the offense didn't get anything going,” Bell said. “Obviously, we didn't have any chemistry. It felt like something was going wrong for us out there. Overall, we were in the red zone how many times? We have to put points on the board. We have to get touchdowns.”
The Sooners scored just one touchdown and one field goal in three red-zone trips.