NORMAN — Patrick O'Hara is off the hook.
Oklahoma's got problems bigger than kicker.
Like being outplayed by a middle-of-the-road WAC team.
On both sides of the ball.
At Owen Field.
The entire game.
Sure, the Sooners prevailed 31-24 on the scoreboard Saturday night.
But the final stats tell the real story of this opener.
Utah State produced 421 total yards. OU only had one more.
The Aggies finished with 21 first downs. The Sooners had just two more.
OU was so lackluster, the OG&E Power Play of the game on the Jumbotron was a Tress Way punt.
An 85-yard punt. But still, a punt?
Sooner Nation was just as sullen. While walking down the ramp after the victory, one pour soul shouted, "Boomer!" No one echoed back, "Sooner."
"Overall, I didn't feel we played very well in a lot of areas," said coach Bob Stoops, who addressed his team roughly 20 minutes more than usual before making it over to his postgame press conference. "A lack of execution on both sides of the ball.
"Not at all pleased with it in any way."
Going into the opener, no one believed OU was a team without imperfections.
The offensive line was revamped. The defensive tackles and cornerbacks were inexperienced.
And then, of course, the field goal kicking has been something to be desired.
Turned out, field goal kicking was OK. O'Hara converted his only attempt, from 32 yards out, even if it was a line-drive knuckleball.
Most everything else about the Sooners, though, left something to be desired.
The defense made Aggie quarterback Diondre Borel look like the second coming of Charlie Ward.
Up front, Casey Walker, Jamarkus McFarland and Adrian Taylor got little push against Utah State's average-sized offensive line.
In the secondary, Jamell Fleming, Jonathan Nelson and Demontre Hurst took turns getting burned deep.
"Everybody took their turn making mistakes," said linebacker Travis Lewis. "Wasn't just one guy. It was the defense collectively.
"At the end of the game, you add that all up and that's 24 points and 421 total yards."
The Sooner offense was not much better.
Quarterback Landry Jones played like he was still mired in his freshman season, completing only 17 of 36 passes while tossing a pair of interceptions. This against the nation's No. 101-ranked pass defense in 2009.
"I didn't think Landry was very sharp," Stoops said. "He looked hurried or rushed. For a guy that played a year ago, he didn't look to be in the comfort zone at all."
Jones, sacked three times, wasn't aided by a lukewarm debut from OU's refurbished offensive line, which featured a lot of new faces, but similar inconsistent results.
In fact, if it weren't for stellar performances by DeMarco Murray (35 carries, 218 rushing yards, both career highs) and Ryan Broyles (nine catches, 142 yards, two TDs), calamity surely would have struck Norman.
Next Saturday, No. 20 Florida State comes to town. In that one, Murray and Broyles alone won't be able to save the Sooners.
OU has a week to solve its problems. And they go way beyond kicker.