OU football notebook: Sooners defense stays diverse

OU still used primarily a three-man front on defense against Notre Dame but used it in different ways than it did the first three games of the season.
by Ryan Aber and Jason Kersey Published: September 30, 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

Nelson did it early in Saturday's 35-21 win over Notre Dame when Eric Striker knocked the ball away from Tommy Rees and directly into Nelson's chest. Nelson returned the interception for a touchdown.

“It just came to me. It did,” Nelson said. “I didn't even have to use my hands. But I have been practicing on them and getting better.”

RED-ZONE OFFENSE NOT BIG CONCERN

Stoops wasn't too concerned about his team's red-zone offense after the Sooners failed to come away with a touchdown after having the ball inside the 10, including once with first and goal from the Notre Dame 2.

“A lot of people are going to have problems in the red zone with Notre Dame,” Stoops said. “A lot of people have and a lot of people will. You're not going to be perfect all the time.”

On the first drive, offensive lineman Adam Shead missed a block as Blake Bell was brought down by Stephon Tuitt for a loss of 3 to force a field-goal try.

On the second, running back Damien Williams turned the wrong way, on a second-down play from the Irish 2, resulting in a 6-yard loss for Trevor Knight.

STOOPS REACTS TO KIFFIN FIRING

Stoops said he felt for Lane Kiffin after Kiffin was fired from the USC job after five games this season.

“I always feel for any coach, being a coach, in those situations for sure,” Stoops said. “I'm also very aware administrations and universities also have to do what they feel is right for their own situations. Of course, I think (USC athletic director) Pat Haden is one of the best guys out there. I'm sure it was difficult.”

Stoops isn't surprised at coaches getting fired during the season.

“It's just the way the world is now,” Stoops said. “I don't know what to say about it. I'm not saying it's alarming. People have to do what they feel is right for their programs. It's just how it is.”

BY RYAN ABER AND JASON KERSEY

by Ryan Aber
OU Athletics 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...
+ show more

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...
+ show more


Trending Now


AROUND THE WEB

  1. 1
    OSU basketball: Four-start center Elijah Thomas to make college choice Tuesday
  2. 2
    Season of birth affects your mood later in life - Telegraph
  3. 3
    Expelled Nazis paid millions in Social Security
  4. 4
    Joseph Randle goes from stealing underwear to endorsing underwear
  5. 5
    How gamer 'The Rad Brad' makes a living playing video games
+ show more