Not much to like about this Oklahoma performance in a 44-10 loss to Oklahoma State. The defense outplayed the offense, but that's not saying much in a game that just as easily could have been 51-3 as 44-10.
LINEUP TINKERING: C
The move of Tony Jefferson back to free safety shored up the deep pass defense. The Cowboys never hurt the Sooners with the long ball. But it's like Bob Stoops said. You can rob Peter to pay Paul. Jefferson's absence at rover left a void, like on OSU's second possession, when Tracy Moore got loose from Joseph Ibiloye on a short crossing pattern, turned upfield and zipped to a 53-yard gain that set up OSU's first touchdown.
THIRD QUARTER: F
The Sooners have been strong in the third quarter most all season, outscoring foes 132-24. But OSU outscored OU 20-0 in the third quarter, when the Sooners went from ineffective to hapless. Two punts, two fumbles, only one defensive stop. The Sooners did not put up a fight.
The offensive line failed to protect Landry Jones and failed to generate much running room. OU tailbacks combined for 120 yards on 28 carries, but most of that was in the fourth quarter. Meanwhile, OU's defensive interior was gashed by OSU's run game (278 yards on 33 carries), and Brandon Weeden generally had all day to throw.
LANDRY JONES: D
Pedestrian passing (27 of 50, for 250 yards), with no completion longer for 23 yards. Four turnovers – two fumbles, two interceptions – plus some overthrows. Not very pretty. But Jones also was constantly harassed and hit some solid throws facing the blitz. Jones' biggest crime was his two fumbles that OSU turned into touchdowns. One was caused by Alex Elkins; the other was unforced.
The Sooners ran their short-yardage formation just once. And Blake Bell went 28 yards for a touchdown with 2:25 left in the game. But don't blame the playcalling. Until that drive, OU never faced 3rd-and-1, 3rd-and-2 or 3rd-and-3. The Sooners faced 2nd-and-1 twice earlier and converted both.
DEFENDING BLACKMON: B
Remarkably enough, OU's pass defense was solid. Weeden didn't kill the Cowboys, completing 24 of 36 for 217 yards, and while Blackmon had 10 catches for 95 yards, his longest gain was 20 yards, and two of his catches were shovel passes.
State brotherhood wasn't limited to the combined bands' performance of “Amazing Grace,” honoring the victims of the OSU plane crash in November. Bob Stoops declaration that he would vote the Cowboys No. 2 was good for the Big 12 and united Bedlam front that's been presented over the last couple of years.
OFFENSIVE GAME PLAN: D
The Sooners figured to be the stronger run team. That was debunked by the way OSU ran the ball, but Josh Heupel didn't help the Sooners get off to much of a physical start. On OU's first three possessions covering 15 snaps, Heupel called 14 passes. The only running play was a Trey Franks reverse.