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Oklahoma football: Coaches, players scoff at perceived problems on defense

Defensive coordinator Mike Stoops said overreacting is to be expected from fans and media. He said that's “what fans do.”
by Jason Kersey Published: September 24, 2012

“I know it's a 60-minute game, but we're not gonna disregard what we did well. The media and the fans can; that's OK. That's what they do. But our players know what we did good, what we didn't do well and what we need to get better at.”

Wort attributes the declined number of linebacker tackles to OU's changed system under Mike Stoops, who replaced Brent Venables as defensive coordinator.

“It's definitely a different system,” Wort said. “It's more designed for the safeties to make plays, instead of linebackers.

“Coach V had it more funneled toward the linebackers, but it's not frustrating. I'm gonna do whatever I can do to help the team win.”

Bob Stoops opened his Monday news conference by declaring the 14-point swing off turnovers the “story of the game” Saturday.

There's truth to that; even after each of OU's quarterbacks fumbled — Landry Jones' was recovered in OU's endzone for a K-State touchdown; Blake Bell's came on the KSU 1-yard line when he just missed the shotgun snap — the Sooners held a three-point lead in the fourth quarter.

But then came Jones' ugly interception, which led to Kansas State's go-ahead touchdown drive.

Still, the opposite of Stoops' turnover argument holds true, also — Oklahoma's defense isn't getting takeaways, save for a first-quarter interception by safety Javon Harris against Florida A&M two weeks ago.

“It's a mindset and it's fundamentals,” Stoops said. “You have to credit those teams for taking care of the ball, but we have to do a better job of forcing turnovers, whether it's stripping the ball and forcing fumbles or getting interceptions.”

by Jason Kersey
OU Sports Reporter
Jason Kersey became The Oklahoman's OU football beat writer in May 2012 after a year covering high school sports and OSU recruiting. Before joining the newspaper in November 2006 as a part-time results clerk, he covered high school football for...
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