So with national and conference title hopes fading, what are the new goals for the Sooners and their much-maligned senior quarterback?
For one, Oklahoma remains in line for an at-large berth in a BCS bowl game if it can avoid losing again. A two-loss Sooner team — with those losses coming to teams both ranked in the current BCS standings' top three — would be mighty appealing to bowl executives.
“I don't think we're going to shut it down and call it quits for the rest of the year,” Jones said. “There is some adversity that comes with losing games and having different goals out of the picture.
“But we're a prideful program and we have a lot of pride in what we do. ... We're absolutely excited and still have a goal of playing in a BCS game.”
For Jones, OU's starter since he was a redshirt freshman replacing Sam Bradford, winning the rest of his games at Oklahoma would go a long way toward improving his legacy.
It's remains to be seen how Jones will be remembered, despite owning every major OU passing record.
His prolific numbers haven't and — barring an unprecedented collapse of the 11 teams currently ranked higher than OU — won't produce a national championship.
“I was proud of him,” Stoops said. “I thought he played really well. I think he played great.
“I don't get (the fan criticism). I don't understand it.”