Oklahoma Sooners' Defense Facing Toughest Test of Season Against Baylor

By Jamie Plunkett
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

The Oklahoma Sooners have faced some good offenses this season — Notre Dame, Texas, Texas Tech, to name a few. However none compare to the offense they’ll square off against this Thursday night when they take the field in Waco, Texas against the Baylor Bears. The Sooners have one of the best defenses in the Big 12, but they’ll be challenged to a new level against a Bears offense that’s on pace to shatter all sorts of records.

Baylor leads the FBS in total yards per game (718.4), passing yards per game (417.3) and points per game (63.9). And they are looking to prove that the soft start to the schedule wasn’t padding their stats. Quarterback Bryce Petty is completing just under 70 percent of his passes on the season and has only thrown one interception. The Bears have two receivers, Antwan Goodley and Tevin Reese, with over 800 yards receiving and eight touchdowns.

Running back Lache Seastrunk is a dark horse Heisman candidate, averaging 9.1 yards per carry with 11 rushing touchdowns on the season.

Meanwhile, Oklahoma’s defense is allowing 14.4 points per game, good for 14th in the nation. They’re allowing only 134 yards per game on the ground, but the more impressive part of their defense is their secondary. The Sooners’ secondary is allowing only 179.5 passing yards per game on the year, which is good for ninth in the country. Key to the defense are cornerback Gabe Lynn, who has three interceptions on the season, and defensive end Charles Tapper, who has a team-leading 4.5 sacks and six tackles for loss. They’ll both need to have big nights to help keep Baylor in check.

However, if Oklahoma does what they did against Texas Tech, allowing 388 passing yards, Sooner fans could be in for a long night. Tech is the closest thing Oklahoma has seen to Baylor this season, and if that’s any indication of what the Sooners are in for, Baylor will be one step closer to the Big 12 Championship.

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