OU Report Card
BY GUERIN EMIG World Sports Writer
Monday, October 29, 2012
10/29/12 at 5:50 AM
The Sooners did some good things. Landry Jones threw for a season-high 356 yards. Slot receiver Jalen Saunders looked a lot like Ryan Broyles while making 15 catches for 181 yards. Ultimately, though, it's about scoring points and OU's 13 weren't nearly enough against a Notre Dame team playing terrific football. The Sooners converted just one of their four red zone opportunities for a touchdown. And while their line did a solid job of protecting Jones, they were dominated when it came to running the ball. Damien Williams and Trey Millard carried 16 times for 40 yards.
The balanced OU attack against Texas, the one that rolled up 343 rushing yards and 334 passing two weeks earlier? Wasn't there Saturday night.
Bob Stoops said he was OK with his defense, aside from two big plays. Well, those two big plays made a pretty big difference in the 30-13 outcome. Cierre Wood went untouched right up the middle for a career-long 62-yard touchdown run to vault Notre Dame into a 7-3 first-quarter lead. More crushing was Everett Golson's 50-yard strike to Chris Brown on the late drive right after OU had tied the score at 13-13. Brown beat Demontre Hurst to the deep post, and it set up the game-winning score.
The Sooners needed to rattle Golson, but it didn't happen. They needed to stifle Notre Dame's ground game, but the Irish ran for 215 yards.
Michael Hunnicutt kicked a pair of first-half field goals to keep OU within 10-6. Tress Way punted six times for a 42-yard average and pinned Notre Dame on its 3 with a third-quarter beauty. What the Sooners could have used was a big play in their return game. Brennan Clay ran back a kickoff 44 yards, but that didn't happen until the score was 30-13 with a minute remaining.
Notre Dame punted four times, but Justin Brown fair-caught three of them. The fourth was downed without a return.