Clutch punting: ATress Way hit a couple of clunkers, but when the Sooners needed him, he came up big. Wayâ€™s 55-yard punt on a snap that started from the OU 19-yard line with two minutes left reversed the field.
Pass rush: ASeven sacks? Phenomenal pass rush, and sackmaster Jeremy Beal didnâ€™t even have any of the seven. Pryce Macon had three as Husker quarterback Taylor Martinez ran for his life most of the night.
Red-zone offense: DFive trips inside the Nebraska 20-yard line resulted in 16 points. Thatâ€™s a good way to get beat. The Sooners settled for four field goals (made three of them) on drives in which they had first down at the NU 14-, 16- and 3-yard lines, plus 3rd-and-2 from the Husker 9-yard line. OUâ€™s only red-zone touchdown came after Kenny Stillsâ€™ 30-yard reception put the Sooners a half yard from the goal line.
Run defense: BThe Huskers were very effective with tailbacks Roy Helu Jr. and Rex Burkhead, who combined for 181 yards on 27 carries. But the Sooners put the clamps on Martinez, a running whiz who even discounting sacks had just 16 yards on seven carries.
Offensive tricks: BIf this was offensive coordinator Kevin Wilsonâ€™s final game â€” who knows, maybe he lands the Indiana job â€” he went out with a bang. A shovel pass, a counter sweep we hadnâ€™t seen, the naked bootleg. Wilson was on his game.
Conspiracy evidence: FThose who believe the Big 12 is out to cheat Nebraska were dealt a setback. The Huskers were called for just three penalties (15 yards) while the Sooners had six for 47 yards. Plus, two plays were reviewed â€” a fumbled interception by Nebraskaâ€™s Courtney Osborne and Stillsâ€™ 31-yard touchdown reception â€” and while both seemed too close to call, both went Nebraskaâ€™s way. Osborneâ€™s fumble was overruled, setting up a Husker touchdown, and Stillsâ€™ TD was wiped out, though OU scored a play later.
Landry Jones: BThe OU quarterback seemed shaky early; in the first 16 1/2 minutes, he was 5-of-10 for 51 yards with an interception. But Jones, despite a ferocious Nebraska pass rush, went 18 of 31 the rest of the way for 291 yards and a touchdown.
Short-yardage offense BEven aside from the red zone, OU struggled to make first downs in short yardage. Nebraska turned back Roy Finch on 4th-and-1 from the Husker 25-yard line on the final play of the first quarter, and OUâ€™s four fourth-quarter drives ended on plays of 3rd-and-3, 3rd-and-4, 3rd-and-3 and 3rd-and-4. But OU also converted two 4th-and-1 plays on scoring drives: Jonesâ€™ naked bootleg for 15 yards that set up a field goal, and Jonesâ€™ 11-yard completion to Cameron Kenney that set up the game-winning field goal.
Coaching alertness: ABob Stoopsâ€™ timeout late in the game, just before Nebraska faked a punt, might have saved the game. Stoops saw the Huskers send a man in motion and immediately called timeout. Nebraska then indeed punted.
Punt returns: DAlways-dependable Ryan Broyles was shaky, fumbling his first two punt returns, and he caught a punt at the OU 8-yard line midway through the fourth quarter, when he might should have let the ball fall and probably roll into the end zone. Broyles did have a 17-yard return that helped OU regain field position in the third quarter. By Berry Tramel