OU Football Notebook: Stopping the run
BY ERIC BAILEY World Sports Writer
Monday, November 12, 2012
11/12/12 at 5:24 AM
Related Story: Defensive effort against Baylor leaves OU's Mike Stoops seething
Oklahoma has given up more than 200 rushing yards in four games this season.
The latest team to run wild on the Sooners was Baylor, which ran for 252 yards in Saturday's contest. It's the most totaled by an OU opponent this season.
"It's unacceptable to give up that many rushing yards," senior defensive end David King said. "Coach Mike Stoops said that in our defensive meeting after the game. Bottom line, guys just couldn't tackle tonight. We've done a poorer and poorer job tackling as the season's progressed.
"Either we've gotta fix it or we're gonna start getting beat."
On-the-job training: Center Ty Darlington knew at the beginning of the week that he was going to get his first start in an OU jersey.
He credited injured Gabe Ikard for providing him help.
"He was like my personal coach," Darlington said. "He wasn't even dressed out the last couple of days. He was coaching me on everything, asking me questions about IDs and everything."
Ikard let him know that he was starting, via text.
Darlington did have a pair of snap infractions.
"Yeah, I couldn't hear Blake (Bell)," Darlington said. "I didn't have as much experience in that situation. Hopefully I can correct that. I just had a hard time hearing him."
Bell's run: Bell's 55-yard run on a third-and-1 early in the fourth quarter was the longest by an Oklahoma quarterback since Patrick Fletcher's 58-yard run against TCU in 1998.
The long run reminded Baylor coach Art Briles of former Washington Redskins running back John Riggins' 43-yard run in Super Bowl XVII.
"I mean you see that all over the place; short yards," Briles said. "That was third-and-a-yard and his was fourth-and-a-yard, but when those situations happen everyone condenses up the line of scrimmage and if you ever break the line of scrimmage because of the coverage on the outside, you've got a chance to go the distance."
Forcing turnovers: Oklahoma safety Tony Jefferson wants to get more opportunities for his offense.
That's why forcing only one turnover against Baylor was disappointing.
"We didn't cause any turnovers, and that ties into the (close) score," Jefferson said. "We gave up some third downs and some big plays and we can't do that. Our main thing is that we have to get some turnovers. That's three games in a row where we've only gotten one turnover."
Moving the chains: Oklahoma ranks sixth nationally in third-down conversion efficiency. The Sooners have made first downs on 62-of-119 attempts (52.1 percent).
OU maintained its success against the Bears, going 9-of-13 on third down.