OU Report Card: Sooners earn highest marks for Austin Box tribute, Dominique Whaley's debut

BERRY TRAMEL'S OU REPORT CARD — The Tom Wort-led tribute to Austin Box and the start of two Heisman campaigns set the grading curve in Oklahoma's 47-14 season-opening victory over Tulsa.
BY BERRY TRAMEL Staff Writer btramel@opubco.com Published: September 3, 2011
Advertisement
;

The usual A-students turned in strong work in Oklahoma's 47-14 victory over Tulsa. And it's clear that a certain walk-on is becoming a coach's pet.

HEISMAN CAMPAIGNS: A

Landry Jones wasn't perfect, but his numbers were Heismanesque – 35 of 47 passing for 375 yards, no interceptions and one TD. Speaking of numbers, Ryan Broyles didn't hurt his longshot hopes, with 14 catches for 158 yards, one TD and a 50-yard circus catch.

AUSTIN BOX TRIBUTE: A

The linebacker who died in May was included in the “There's Only One Oklahoma” intro video, and as advertised, Tom Wort wore Box's No. 12 jersey and led the Sooners out of the pregame tunnel. Wort sprinted onto Owen Field faster than any Sooner in memory, getting 10-15 yards ahead of any teammate. He reached midfield and pointed skyward.

PASS COVERAGE: D

The Sooners played exquisite defense except for three snaps — Tulsa pass plays of 69, 56 and 44 yards, all of which were busts that left Hurricane receivers wide open. That ruined an otherwise great night for Brent Venables' unit (231 total yards on TU's other 61 plays). But those kinds of busts can get the Sooners beat in a closer game.

RED-ZONE OFFENSE: B

The Sooners penetrated Tulsa's 20-yard line eight times and came away with five touchdowns and two field goals. Trey Franks' fumble ruined one threat. Good news – when the Sooners tried to ram the ball in, it worked. The two field goals came after Landry Jones threw second- and third-down incompletions.