OU Football Notebook: Proud coach
BY ERIC BAILEY World Sports Writer
Monday, November 19, 2012
11/19/12 at 5:12 AM
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Oklahoma quarterback Landry Jones tied a school record with six passing touchdowns against West Virginia in the Sooners' 50-49 victory on Saturday night.
None were more important than his 5-yard strike on a slant pass to Kenny Stills. The game-winning throw came on fourth-and-3 with 24 seconds left on the clock. It was a play that Jones audibled into after reading the West Virginia coverage.
Oklahoma co-offensive coordinator Josh Heupel has been a full-time assistant coach for eight years. Jones' performance, especially on the final drive, inspired the coach.
"For Landry to do what he does on the fourth down, with everything on the line, to check in the one-on-one on the backside, it just speaks to what kind of competitor he is," Heupel said.
"He understands the game. It wasn't an option, like I want you to check it, it was him seeing the leverage and checking it. It's as good a play and it's my proudest moment as a coach. Not just because of the type of situation but a guy preparing it, understanding it, trusting it and then making the plays. That's as good as I've seen."
Wide receiver Sterling Shepard said Jones was calm during the late moments.
"He was calm, cool and collective like always," Shepard said. "There were no worries. Whenever you see somebody like that, it just calms you down too."
Added Jalen Saunders: "Landry's composure was really good. He wasn't really worried about too much. I think he did a great job."
Jones finished with a school-record 554 passing yards.
No hiding this: David King used the word "embarrassing" three different times in the first two questions posed to him following the victory.
The Sooners were torched for 778 yards, the most allowed in school history.
"It's two weeks in a row we've been exposed by high-powered offenses," King said. "It's all out there on tape now. OSU is going to come out here and try to expose us again for a third week ... Something has to change. We're just playing bad football all the way around defensively. I thanks the offense for saving us here tonight. But the game shouldn't have been as close as it was.
"Credit West Virginia. I don't know what's wrong with our defense right now. We can't make any plays, we can't get any pressure on the quarterback. We can't tackle. It was just poor defense."
Big-play men: The Mountaineers averaged 9.5 yards per snap. Wide receiver Tavon Austin lined up at running back for the first time in his career and ran for 344 yards on just 21 carries. Austin had five runs that covered 31 yards or more (74, 56, 54, 47, 31).
"That might be the best performance I've ever seen," OU defensive coordinator Mike Stoops said. "I've never seen a guy that fast, that quick and that elusive in space like that."
Geno Smith was hounded into two interceptions (he entered the game with only three through the first nine games), but still managed to go 20-of-35 for 320 yards, becoming the first quarterback to surpass the 300-yard mark against OU. He threw four touchdown passes, all to wide receiver Stedman Bailey, who finished with 205 receiving yards.
"Very disappointed in our containment of the football and our ability to tackle in space and come up with a play virtually the whole second half," Mike Stoops said. "The second half was a fiasco. We didn't have a good enough play. Them moving him to running back obviously caught us off guard. They had a great plan and we didn't make great adjustments. I'm disappointed in myself.
"I'm no martyr - believe me. Just have to come up with better stuff. It starts with us a staff. We have to have better adjustments. They were a well-coached team."
Network selected: The Big 12 Conference announced that Saturday's Oklahoma State-Oklahoma football game will be televised by ESPN.
Kickoff is at 2:30 p.m. at Oklahoma Memorial Stadium.