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Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma QB Trevor Knight excels in upset win over Alabama

by Jason Kersey Published: January 3, 2014

Knight returned to the field, dropped back to pass and fired a 45-yard touchdown to Lacoltan Bester, the first of three touchdown passes in the first half that gave Oklahoma a 31-17 lead at the break.

The Alabama defense adjusted at halftime and forced the Sooners to punt on each of its third-quarter drives. Early in the fourth quarter, though, with Alabama threatening to come from behind and rip the Sooners' hearts out, Knight led a remarkable drive, capped when he escaped pressure on second down, spotted Sterling Shepard in the end zone and delivered a perfect strike for a 9-yard touchdown.

“Nothing breaks down with Trevor Knight,” Shepard said. “He was running around, making plays, throwing the ball. He had so many go-balls he put on the money.”

The buzz around Knight began last December during the Sooners' Cotton Bowl preparations, when he played the role of Texas A&M's Johnny Manziel and wowed his coaches and teammates.

Oklahoma coaches always insisted that Knight could make all the throws necessary to lead the Sooner offense, but he rarely showed it on game days.

Thursday, though, Knight showcased the incredible skills that allowed him to win the starting quarterback job in the first place, and did it against what is regarded as the college football's best defense.

“The extra month of practice, he really got better,” said co-offensive coordinator Jay Norvell. “That was a real credit to him and his work ethic. … He was playing at another level and our kids were staying up with him.”

by Jason Kersey
OU Sports Reporter
Jason Kersey became The Oklahoman's OU football beat writer in May 2012 after a year covering high school sports and OSU recruiting. Before joining the newspaper in November 2006 as a part-time results clerk, he covered high school football for...
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