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OU looks ready to take on Texas after rout of Ball State

Travis Lewis and the OU football team turned in a performance Saturday that cured any lingering ailments from a not-so-pleasing win over Missouri. The Sooners were able to get right before Saturday's matchup with undefeated Texas.
BY TRAVIS HANEY, Staff Writer, Published: October 1, 2011

A side-by-side picture of Oklahoma linebacker Travis Lewis, one week's postgame to the next, would have been quite the sight.

After the 10-point victory against Missouri, he was bitter, angry. And Saturday, following a 62-6 Sooners beatdown of Ball State at Memorial Stadium? The senior leader was jovial, in good spirits — a new man.

“We felt like we were 2-1” after the Missouri win, Lewis said. “To come out here and play like this, leading up to Texas, this is huge.”

Oh, right. Texas. It's officially Red River Rivalry week for the 4-0 Sooners and 4-0 Longhorns.

“Undefeated teams? Texas-OU?” Lewis said. “It can't get any bigger than that. They're trying to take off our heads. We're trying to take off theirs. It should be fun to watch.”

Even if UT week started in your household, oh, a week ago, the Sooners insisted it did not begin for them until 62-6 went final on the home scoreboard. They were not looking or thinking ahead, they said.

Texas did not appear to, either. It clobbered Iowa State on the road, scoring the first 34 points of the game in a 37-14 victory.

OU coach Bob Stoops said his locker room was actually somewhat subdued after its win, a 56-point win.

“We took care of business. We did what we needed to do,” Sooners guard Gabe Ikard said. “Once this game was over, our minds shifted to going to the Cotton Bowl next week. We know they played a really good game, and they've been playing well all year.”

The Sooners led just 10-6 early in the second quarter when Ball State went flat. Cardinals quarterback Keith Wenning, who had not thrown an interception in 130 attempts in the first four games of the year, was picked off by OU nickel back Tony Jefferson on three consecutive possessions. Jefferson had help, with tipped passes by linemen Frank Alexander and R.J. Washington.

The takeaways turned into three touchdowns, and the Sooners scored 28 points in a span of five minutes, 22 seconds in the second quarter. They outdid that in the early part of the second half, putting up 21 points in 68 seconds.

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