SEATTLE — Overwhelmed by defensive pressure, Jake Locker tucked the ball and ran for his life. But he didn't get far. Seven yards down the field, Travis Lewis grabbed Locker's legs before Ryan Reynolds buried his shoulder pad into Locker's chest so violently, the Washington quarterback had the wind knocked out of him and momentarily had to leave the game. Thanks to hard hitting and relentless blitzing, Oklahoma punished Locker and the Huskies 55-14 in its best defensive road performance in years. Before 67,716, the Sooners rolled 55-14 at Husky Stadium, emphatically ending any talk of “road woes,” and just as emphatically returning memories of the blitzing defenses that dominated college football at the turn of this century. “Our players really took the field in a strong way,” coach Bob Stoops said. “We really played physical.” The Sooner defense finished with 13 tackles for loss, four sacks and three fumble recoveries, blitzing seemingly on every down while the game was still competitive. Minus a 22-yard run by David Freeman, the defensive front, spearheaded by Gerald McCoy, demolished the Husky running game. The new-look linebacking trio of Lewis, Reynolds and Keenan Clayton boasted its collective speed, blitzing their way into the Husky backfield and chasing down Locker whenever he escaped the pocket. The defensive backfield, which has been burnt at times in recent years, didn't allow Locker to connect a pass of more than 21 yards and covered well in man-to-man coverage. And defensive coordinator Brent Venables called his most aggressive game, perhaps since taking over for Mike Stoops in 2004. “It was cool, we came in and did what we wanted,” McCoy said. “(Locker) is a real good player, but I think we handled him pretty well.” Did they ever. The Sooners led 34-0 at halftime, marking the first time they held a home team scoreless in a first half since playing in Waco in 2004. But that was Baylor, and that halftime lead was only 14-0. Sure, Washington had its share of self-inflicted wounds, missing two field goals and perpetually struggling with the center snap out of the shotgun. But in this game, the Sooner defense didn't react to anything the Huskies did. Instead, OU dictated. Said Stoops, “I felt great about the attitude our players carried on the field.” The Sooners head into an off week having answered their biggest question. We knew the offense would be stellar returning quarterback Sam Bradford, the entire offensive line and a bevy of playmaking skill players. What we didn't know is how the defensive back seven would perform with a new trio of linebackers and a new pair of cornerbacks. But it's clear the defense has upgraded its overall team speed, in large part thanks to the athletic ability of Lewis and Clayton. That bodes well for looming games against Texas, Oklahoma State and possibly Missouri, all of whom will test the mettle of this defense. If they play like they did Saturday, this defense won't be waiting to see what those offenses do. This defense will be going after them.