OU football notebook: Defense bends, then finishes strong

After Irish tight end Troy Niklas scored early in the fourth quarter, Notre Dame couldn't move the football.
by Ryan Aber and Jason Kersey Published: September 29, 2013


photo - Oklahoma defensive coordinator Mike Stoops talks with players during a timeout in a college football game between the University of Oklahoma Sooners (OU) and the University of Louisiana Monroe Warhawks at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, Okla., on Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013. Oklahoma won 34-0. Photo by Bryan Terry The Oklahoman
Oklahoma defensive coordinator Mike Stoops talks with players during a timeout in a college football game between the University of Oklahoma Sooners (OU) and the University of Louisiana Monroe Warhawks at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, Okla., on Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013. Oklahoma won 34-0. Photo by Bryan Terry The Oklahoman

“Me and him get a little fired up when we're together,” Ikard said. “He's been a great mentor for me and Ty (Darlington) both, teaching us technique at center and teaching us to see things on the field.”

Ikard gave Cooper and offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh credit for different blocking schemes this week, helping the Sooners run for more than 200 yards after rushing for just 15 a year ago against the Irish.

“Using things he's taught me, I've become a lot better player,” Ikard said.

ALEXANDER PROGRESSING

With Notre Dame's offense, the Sooners used four linebackers, more than they have early in the season, opening opportunities for freshman Dominique Alexander.

Alexander saw extensive playing time and finished with four tackles, the second-most for the linebackers.

“He learned a couple of tough lessons today,” linebackers coach Tim Kish said. “He has some growing up to do, but I thought he played his heart out. We've just got to keep getting him better down the road.”

QUOTABLE

“If we're going to beat Oklahoma at Oklahoma, we have to play a lot better than we did today.”

TCU coach Gary Patterson after his team's 48-17 win over SMU. The Horned Frogs play at OU at 6 p.m. Saturday.


by Ryan Aber
Reporter
Ryan Aber has worked for The Oklahoman since 2006, covering high schools, the Oklahoma City RedHawks, the Oklahoma City Barons and OU football recruiting. An Oklahoma City native, Aber graduated from Northeastern State. Before joining The...
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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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