NORMAN — A couple of months ago, Bob Stoops approached offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson with an idea on how to score more points. A lot of people are doing it, Stoops said. Would you want to do it?
"If you want to run no-huddle, I know how to do it,” Wilson responded. "Here's how you do it.” What started out as a casual conversation between Stoops and Wilson has evolved into the audition of the no-huddle into the Sooner offense this spring. And the benefits could be significant. Not only for the offense, but for the Sooner defense, too. As for the offense, Stoops and Wilson think a no-huddle attack could help the Sooners score more points. The evidence for that thinking is in their opponents — five of the top six offenses in the Big 12 ran versions of a no-huddle offense last season. "It's becoming about our league,” Wilson said. "Half our league is doing it.” OU might be perfectly equipped to run the no-huddle, too. The Sooners bring back a proven commodity at quarterback in Sam Bradford, the nation's reigning passing efficiency champion. OU also returns eight other starters, meaning the learning curve shouldn't be so steep. But the biggest advantage the Sooners might have with the no-huddle is their tremendous flexibility in formations, thanks to versatile players like tight end/fullback Brody Eldridge, tailback/fullback Matt Clapp, tight end/wide receiver Jermaine Gresham and tailback/slot receiver/quarterback DeMarco Murray. Defenses will have less time to adjust to OU's offense, which can run anything from three tight ends to five wideouts using almost the same players in either. That could create significant mismatches such as isolating Murray on a linebacker in the slot. On top of that, OU should get more snaps from scrimmage, prompting quarterbacks coach Josh Heupel to compare it to Billy Tubbs' style of coaching basketball.
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