Bedlam always has a few unique twists, but Saturday night was one of the strangest matchups between Oklahoma and Oklahoma State in recent memory. The Sooners walked away victorious 28-13, improved to 6-5 during the season and secured bowl eligibility.
It wasn’t as nice as the scoreboard would suggest, however, as all of Oklahoma’s 28 points came instantly in the first quarter. For the rest of the game, the Sooners struggled to generate a single positive offensive drive. Electric starting, coupled with a strong defense throughout the fight, saw Oklahoma walk away with a much-needed win.
Here are three takeaways from Oklahoma’s Bedlam win:
Opposing coaching styles
Oklahoma’s new coaching staff wasted no time making bold calls at Bedlam. After Oklahoma gave Oklahoma a four-point lead through strobes and deep shots in the first quarter, the Sooners were still breaking out the tricks. That speaks to how badly OU wanted this game.
Mike Gundy chose to kick a field goal inside the 10-yard line, a 28-point drop in the second quarter in a game where the offense was utterly lifeless.
In the next series, Oklahoma performed a trick play on kick return and launched a cross-field pass to Marvin Mims That went 50 yards along the sidelines. A few games later, the Sooners then went on a fourth and five nearfield goal stretches. Although Oklahoma didn’t score in the second quarter, the aggressive mindset was evident and showed all night.
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The Sooners also took risks on defense, sending several different strobes and often getting mixed-up looks. Oklahoma State finished the contest with four turnovers, down just 7-for-22 in third place.
Put pressure on the quarterback
The Oklahoma defense was able to make game after game against the Cowboys.
The pre-Snap movement was extremely obvious and confused both the frontline and the state of Oklahoma Spencer Sanders. The different looks made the Cowboys uncomfortable throughout the game.
Sanders was forced to read fast and early, and that cost the Cowboys points. Three turnovers in the first quarter came courtesy of Oklahoma’s varied looks defensively, and late in the game when Sanders had to improvise, Sanders threw in a fourth pick TheShaun White.
Get Oklahoma gameplay Dillon Gabriel settled in early was clear. In the game’s first two drives, the Sooners used a variety of screens in the backfield and crossed routes across center field. The light and fast attacking players gave the whole unit the ultimate confidence in the first quarter.
In the end, the fast sluggers that should get Gabriel into the rhythm were the same plays Oklahoma won the game. After the opening quarter, Gabriel struggled to find open receivers and the offense stalled. However, thanks to “gimme” plays in the first quarter, Oklahoma rolled to victory without scoring a point the rest of the game.
The Sooners wrap up the 2022 regular season in Lubbock, TX next Saturday against the Red Raiders. Lubbock is always a tough place to play, and while Texas Tech has struggled at times this season, the team is now Bowl-qualified. Not to mention that a 6:30pm night kick should give fans plenty to get excited about.