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Oklahoma football: Sooners aren't who we — or they — thought they were

COMMENTARY — So much for the Heisman Trophy-candidate quarterback, the vastly improved defense and home-field invincibility. These Sooners are nothing special.
by Berry Tramel Published: September 22, 2012

NORMAN – You've heard of statement victories? This was a statement defeat.

Kansas State beat the Sooners 24-19 Saturday night at Owen Field. Beat the Sooners every way you can.

Out-toughed OU. Out-clutched OU. Out-worked OU. Out-played OU. Out-coached OU.

Just so there's no one out there still in denial, let's be clear: The Sooners are not who we thought they are or even who we thought they might be.

They are not a championship-contending team. The cracks of team discipline since winter, the cracks on the field, have shown themselves.

The Big Bowl is gone. Now even the Big 12 title seems a mirage, since they tend to hand that trophy to teams that produce.

“We wish we were better but we weren't,” defensive coordinator Mike Stoops said. “There's a lot of teams like we are right now.”

That's true. There are a lot of nothing-special teams playing on Saturdays. Here's what the Sooners are.

• A quarterback-centric team with a quarterback who hasn't played worth a darn since the first week of last November.

Landry Jones kept offering Kansas State the ball, and the Wildcats eventually took it enough to win this game. Two Landry turnovers and it could have been five.

Landry was throwing behind receivers all game long; he even threw behind Roy Finch on a shovel pass, when Finch was 12 inches away.

Want to feel even worse after this defeat, OU fans? Texas is getting better quarterbacking this season than are the Sooners.

Here's how little respect KSU coach Bill Snyder had for the OU offense. He twice ordered a punt on fourth-and-1 from around midfield, even though he's got a battering ram quarterback in Collin Klein who rarely gets knocked backward or sideways.

Snyder correctly deduced that OU's offense would find a way to bumble if it consistently went the length of the field.

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by Berry Tramel
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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