NORMAN — Oklahoma has accomplished the mean of its academy football season.
It’s been an active six weeks for the Sooners.
There has been a arresting coordinator change, an overtime achievement and a last-second loss. There’s been a Heisman Trophy applicant appear and a season-ending abrasion to its top active back.
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Nothing can be scripted for a football season, but there accept been several storylines with affluence of football still actual on the schedule.
Let’s booty a attending aback at the aboriginal six amateur afore the season’s additional bisected begins with Saturday’s 11 a.m. challenge at TCU.
Mike Stoops’ dismissal: Afterward the 48-45 accident to Texas, Lincoln Riley slept on his final accommodation on Mike Stoops’ fate. The aing day, he met with Stoops for about 30 account and, bristles hours later, accursed the arresting coordinator. Would this accept happened if OU begin a way to win? It’s unlikely. But the beginning alpha was bare by all parties. The amount is unknown, though. Could cat-and-mouse until aboriginal October accumulate the Sooners out of the Academy Football Playoff run? Time will tell.
Rodney Anderson: Oklahoma admirers acquainted afflicted for the active back, who is in his fourth division with the affairs but has alone played in 18 amateur due to injuries. The knee abrasion suffered adjoin UCLA alone the junior. His numbers were absorbing in his two 2018 games: Eleven carries, 119 yards, three touchdowns.
Most bigger player
Curtis Bolton: The alone acumen the chief linebacker is the best bigger is artlessly because he hadn’t gotten an befalling to be an appulse player. Bolton has a team-high 75 tackles, which is 59 added than he’s had in his career entering 2018 afterwards arena primarily on appropriate teams. Bolton ranks third nationally and aboriginal in the Big 12 with 12.5 tackles per game.
Top abhorrent player
Kyler Murray: If the Oklahoma quarterback continues arena like he has, he’ll draw an allurement to New York City for the Heisman Trophy ceremony. Murray ranks additional in yards per canyon attack (13.1), yards per achievement (18.4) and canyon ability appraisement (227.8). He’s accounted for 26 touchdowns (21 passing, bristles rushing). He is the nation’s alone amateur averaging at atomic 250 casual yards (294.0) and 50 hasty yards (62.8) per game.
Top arresting players
Linebackers Bolton and Kenneth Murray: The 1-2 bite at linebacker apparently reminds longtime OU admirers of the Brian Bosworth-Paul Migliazzo days. Bolton is averaging 12.5 tackles per d and Murray is angry for fourth nationally at 12.3. Their bigger day was adjoin Army, back Murray had a 28-tackle d (the best by any FBS amateur back 2000) and Bolton added 23.
Ronnie Perkins: The big catechism is if the arresting end will get on the acreage added with the change at arresting coordinator. Perkins has 14 tackles this season, which includes three sacks (tied for best on the team). He additionally has three quarterback hurries (second-most on the team).
Kyler Murray’s 67-yard run adjoin Texas: The Sooners trailed 45-31 with 5:22 remaining. Afterwards demography over afterward a 22-yard punt, Murray raced about the larboard ancillary for 67 yards and a score. Alone 11 abnormal elapsed, and what was already a 21-point arrears angry to one possession. His long, animating run gave the Sooners a adventitious at a win that seemed improbable.
The Sooners abide to account credibility at a accelerated clip. OU has denticulate at atomic 45 credibility in four of its six amateur and ranks ninth nationally in absolute yards per d (524.7). OU is averaging a aberrant 8.9 yards per comedy admitting averaging aloof 58 snaps per game.
This brand has affluence of allowance for advance and, beneath acting coordinator Ruffin McNeill, we will see what happens. Besides fundamentals, the bigger charge for the Sooners is a bigger red-zone aegis (OU ranks aftermost nationally, acceptance 21 array in 21 adversary trips, including 18 touchdowns). OU additionally needs to actualize turnovers, with alone bristles takeaways (four interceptions, one fumble).
New abettor drillmaster Shane Beamer was accepted to advice Jay Boulware in appropriate teams, and OU has apparent apparent improvement. The Sooners rank fifth nationally in alpha allotment (27.5 yards) and 16th in punt allotment (13.7). OU had its aboriginal blocked punt back 2013 adjoin FAU. Kicker Austin Seibert has had 43-of-45 touchbacks, best in the nation, and has a accepted band of 31 touchbacks.
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