We knew going into this game that one team was going to walk away breaking a streak. It was either going to be the Texas Tech Red Raiders not winning a home conference game since 2010 or the Oklahoma Sooners breaking their Lubbock losing woes. The streak-breaking goes to the Sooners, who took care of business in Lubbock today, winning 41-20.
Surprisingly most of the credit for winning goes to offense. Sooner QB Landry Jones looked as though the loss two weeks ago against the Kansas State Wildcats lit a much needed fire underneath him. He was accurate, didn’t make bad decisions and seemed to be in the game mentally which is a vast improvement from the previous weeks. His touchdown pass to Kenny Stills in the second quarter marked the 100th of his career. Jones may have just had an okay day, but when the day consists of no picks or fumbles, that’s a good day.
The Tech defense allowed almost as many points today that it has allowed their entire season so far (43). The Sooner offense had four touchdown drives and 27 unanswered points until Texas Tech scored late in the fourth quarter. They opened the second half with a 54 yard touchdown and kept it rolling from there.
Defensively, the Sooners looked good. They did miss a scoring opportunity when Jamarkus McFarland intercepted a tipped pass from Tech QB, Seth Doege. McFarland ran the ball 13 yards before fumbling it on the 4-yard line and was recovered by Tech. Safety Aaron Colvin picked-off Doege which set Oklahoma up to score a field goal. In the third quarter, Javon Harris gave Doege his third pick of the day, this one a pick six. It also put the game out of reach for the Red Raiders.
Surprise defensive player of the game goes to Frank Shannon. Shannon came in to replace Tom Wort, who was benched in a surprise move by Mike Stoops. Wort has been playing off the last couple of games and today, he was continuing to miss tackles and not wrapping-up. Shannon came up huge against Doege in a fourth down situation, sacking him and grabbing a 10-yard loss while doing it, putting Oklahoma on their own 46.
The Red Raider offense was held to virtually no points during the second half at all, despite the gimme touchdown at the end when Oklahoma’s second team was on the field. Their defense was also exposed or maybe just over-rated to begin with. Going from the last place defense in Division I to being ranked No. 1 is still a major improvement, even if it was against not-so-worthy opponents. Unfortunately for them, they take on the high-powered West Virginia Mountaineers next week.
The Sooners performance on Saturday was a complete 180-degree turnaround from the performance they put up against Kansas State two weeks ago. They weren’t into it mentally, this week they were. They seem to have been clicking on all cylinders, with the receivers working to get open for Jones and the defense putting pressure on the Tech offensive line. They will need to continue clicking on all cylinders and even step it up a notch because the next game isn’t going to be easy.
With that said, it’s officially Texas week.