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Oklahoma football: Landry Jones remained calm, collected during barnburner

Quarterback builder George Whitfield Jr., thrilled with Jones' composure and opportunities
By Stephanie Kuzydym Published: November 18, 2012

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Landry Jones was calm and collected Saturday against West Virginia.

And his private quarterback builder, George Whitfield Jr., absolutely loved it.

“He was strong in all phases,” Whitfield said of Oklahoma's fifth-year senior quarterback. “He threw strikes, and he moved his receivers up and around.”

But this is the Landry Jones that so many Oklahoma fans have come to know.

The one who throws an interception at least every game. The one who toys with triple coverage. But always the guy who never rides the wave.

However, we in the media ride him for it. His performance against Baylor? Meh. It wasn't anything inspiring. Nothing, as they say, to write home about. His performance weeks and weeks ago against Kansas State? Headline worthy  —   in a bad way.

Then came Oklahoma's first game in Morgantown where the gunslinger went 38-of-51 for 554 yards and six touchdowns. Just one interception.

That's the Landry Jones who goes high in the NFL Draft.

But during Saturday's fourth quarter, where Oklahoma and West Virginia scored on nearly every drive, there was Jones.

Calm and collected.

During the postgame interviews, freshman wide receiver Sterling Shepard talked about how cool and relaxed Jones was while the rest of the team was on upset alert.

When The Oklahoman telephoned Whitfield after the game and asked what he thought about Jones' best performance, he said, “He was who he has always shown that he is.”

Whitfield continued.

“He's a big-time quarterback that played like it,” he said. “He's all the things you'd expect from a big-time performer. There's certain expectations your team should have and security your team should feel from your quarterback. That's what Landry brought.”

Jones threw touchdown passes for 4, 76, 4, 11, 7 and 5 yards. And that 76-yarder quickly built steam when junior wide receiver Jalen Saunders found an open opportunity to run. Jones also gave the Sooners key yards, especially when OU coach Bob Stoops watched his prized short-yardage package, the Belldozer, get stopped.

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