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Oklahoma football: With more time to tweak defense, Bob Stoops expecting greater results in 2014

Oklahoma’s defense made drastic improvements between 2012 and 2013, a fact made all the more impressive considering OU coaches hadn’t even started installing their 3-3-5 scheme at this time last year.
by Jason Kersey Published: June 22, 2014

“We were talking about it in the spring, Mike and I and the other guys, but we didn’t go to it until two-a-days,” Bob Stoops said.

By keeping at least two linebackers — and usually three — on the field at all times in 2013, the Sooner run defense made drastic improvement, even after senior linebacker and team captain Corey Nelson was lost to injury in the fourth game of the season.

The better system resulted in better play, which obviously created more confidence among Sooner defenders.

Even in Oklahoma’s embarrassing 41-12 loss at Baylor in November, the OU defense hung tough against the Bears’ powerful offense. The Sooners’ lack of offensive production eventually caused the defense to wear down in the second half.

Entering 2014, OU must replace most of its defensive backfield, but Bob Stoops said he’s confident moving forward because his staff has spent the offseason fine-tuning its scheme.

“We made all kinds of different tweaks and adjustments to it throughout the spring that we didn’t have the luxury of doing a year ago,” he said. “We’re definitely much further along in what we want to do and how we want to handle, not only Big 12 offenses, but any offense.”

by Jason Kersey
OU Sports Reporter
Jason Kersey became The Oklahoman's OU football beat writer in May 2012 after a year covering high school sports and OSU recruiting. Before joining the newspaper in November 2006 as a part-time results clerk, he covered high school football for...
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