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Oklahoma football report card: Sooners' trick plays, pass defense earn high marks

by Jenni Carlson Published: October 19, 2013


The Sooners got off to a rocky start, only converting 2 of 6 in the first half, but in the second half, they were nearly automatic. They were 5 of 8 on third down after halftime. And even though it was against a less-than-stellar Kansas defense, that 7 of 14 mark was a big-time improvement over last week. OU was a woeful 2 of 13 against Texas.


A week after the Sooner defense got abused on third down — the Longhorns even scored their first offensive touchdown on a third-and-long — OU stood tall on third down. It only allowed Kansas to covert 2 of 11 third-down attempts, and the Jayhawks had no third-down conversions after the first quarter. Stout, stout play by the Sooners to get off the field when they had the chance.


This one is tough to figure. The Sooners were decent both covering and returning kickoffs, but after that, it's a mixed bag. They blocked a punt that led to a safety, then an immediate touchdown, but they also got a punt blocked that led to a quick Kansas touchdown. Michael Hunnicutt missed an extra point on what looked like a bad snap, but then the Sooners blocked a Kansas extra point that Aaron Colvin returned for a safety. We'll call it a wash and give special teams a C.


Things looked dreary before kickoff with Memorial Stadium barely half empty, but as the day wore on, the crowd filled in a bit. It made for a much better scene on what turned out to be a beautiful day, sunny and 70 degrees. A pregame flyover by eight small planes with pink smoke trails — pink is the color of breast cancer awareness month — was a cool and unexpected treat.


One of the best looks in all of football — the Sooners' road uniforms of crimson helmets and white jerseys and pants — did battle with one of the uglier ones. The Jayhawks had blue helmets and pants, but their gray jerseys were hideous. I'm all for gray uniforms — heck, I'm all for changing it up a bunch if you don't have a traditional look — but these jerseys looked like practice gear. Worst, they were impossible to read in the stadium.

by Jenni Carlson
Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football...
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