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OU football: Assessing the big-play damage

Oklahoman Published: October 29, 2008
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OU defensive coordinator Brent Venables considers a big play to be any run of 15 yards or pass of 25 or more surrendered by his defense. Opponents have gashed the OU defense for 20 of those big plays the last three weeks.

Tallying up the damage:

The trend
Games Big plays Total yards Ppg
First 5 12 306 13.8
Next 3 20 730 37.0
Game by game
Cincinnati, W 52-26
Drive distance (yds) Big play (yds) Drive result
82 57 pass TD
30 36 pass Turnover
15 15 run Punt
Comment: Take out Mardy Gilyard’s 57-yard screen pass, and OU’s defense gives up just 269 yards and 14 points.

Washington, W 55-14
Drive distance Big play Drive result
27 17 run Turnover
57 22 run Turnover
70 15 run TD
Comment: UW had three long runs, but on the first Jake Locker was stripped of the ball.

TCU, W 35-10
Drive distance Big play Drive result
64 21 run Turnover
27 29 pass Turnover
Comment: Joseph Turner fumbled on his 21-yard run, recovered by Lendy Holmes.

Baylor, W 49-17
Drive distance Big play Drive result
68 36 run TD
75 20 run TD
72 17, 21 run FG
Comment: The only time Baylor could get anything going was when quarterback Robert Griffin scrambled out of the pocket for long gains.

Texas, L 45-35
Drive distance Big play Drive result
57 25 pass FG
80 36 pass FG
51 30 run TD
42 18 run FG
74 37 pass TD
80 62 run TD
Comment: Thirty-eight of Texas 45 points were sparked by big plays (including a TD kickoff return).

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