Oklahoma football notebook: Sooner defense comes alive in the fourth quarter

by Ryan Aber Published: November 24, 2012

Whether it was Clint Chelf, Joseph Randle, Josh Stewart or any other Oklahoma State offensive player, Oklahoma's defense didn't offer much resistance for much of the first three quarters.

In the fourth, though, the Sooners kept the Cowboys from moving the ball much at all, helping them get back in it and pull out a 51-48 overtime win at Owen Field.

Oklahoma State was held to a three-and-out on three of its four fourth-quarter possessions after going three-and-out just twice through the first three quarters.

“We gave ourselves the chance to get back in the game and then at the end we even forced a field goal to win the football game,” Sooners coach Bob Stoops said.

OSU converted on 7 of its 15 third-down conversions.

“They went back to doing what was successful early in the game and we were ready for it,” Sooners cornerback Aaron Colvin said. “We kind of knew what was coming there at the end.

CLOCK MANAGEMENT FAVORS OU IN FOURTH

With the rapid pace of much of the game, it didn't seem likely that when the Sooners got the ball with just more than six minutes remaining, that the drive would be the final one of regulation.

But the Sooners ran out all but four seconds of the clock with a 17-play drive that forced the game into overtime.

“That was not necessarily the plan at the first part of the drive but as it went on, that's kind of the scenario that played out,” Sooners co-offensive coordinator Josh Heupel said. “We felt that we had a chance to get a couple of runs in there and stay ahead of the chains and stay out of some third-and-long situations where they were dropping in and making it tough on us.”

Each team called one timeout on the drive.

The Sooners faced third down three times on the drive. The final two were third-and-one (one successful, the other setting up Blake Bell's fourth-down touchdown to force overtime).

The first, though, was on third-and-eight from the Sooners' 27.

Jalen Saunders hauled in a 10-yard pass to give OU a first down but Stoops said he was considering going for it if the play wasn't successful.

“I was having a pretty good talk with myself on what to do,” Stoops said.

STILLS RELISHES TD, CELEBRATION

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by Ryan Aber
Reporter
Ryan Aber has worked for The Oklahoman since 2006, covering high schools, the Oklahoma City RedHawks, the Oklahoma City Barons and OU football recruiting. An Oklahoma City native, Aber graduated from Northeastern State. Before joining The...
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