Two weeks removed from a clutch win with key play-making in all three phases of the game, Oklahoma suffers a loss with key breakdowns in all three phases. Not doing the little things leading to big plays by the Frogs. It was a total team failure.
And to be fair, TCU quarterback Trevone Boykin played his ass off. He made play after play. He played a much better game than I thought he was capable of.
Even with all that, OU had the ball at the TCU 20 twice in the last six minutes with a chance to take the lead. Zero points where two very makable field goals grab the lead for OU.
Short list here.
He's rapidly turning in a year similar to Ryan Broyles in 2009.
Multiple sacks/tackles for loss and a fumble recovery.
Led OU in tackles and got a great interception in the second quarter.
He gave a gritty performance, rushing for 3 touchdowns. If anything, Perine should have had 10 more carries.
Pretty much the whole defensive game plan and execution for three quarters sucked. Sloppy tackling. Confusion in coverage leading to big TD receptions. Unable to either pressure Boykin or cover the TCU receivers. In particular, Mike Stoops seemed unprepared for the QB option run game that the Horned Frogs used on their first two TD drives.
OU defensive linemen deflected two passes that would have ended up being pick-sixes by
defensive backs or linebackers. TCU fumbled the ball back to itself. Boykin had a pass deflected that a WR still caught. TCU fumbled into the end zone and recovered it.
Just didn’t seem like OU’s day.
Secondary play at times was terrible. The DBs were missing tackles left and right. They didn't line up correctly on two TCU scoress.
It’s hard to identify a DB that had a good game. Forced to make a choice, it would have to be Quentin Hayes, although he was completely lost on TCU’s last TD pass.
Jed Barnett decided to try rugby-style punting early on in the game. It led to his worst punt of the year a 25-yard shank that gave TCU a short field for a quick TD.
Offensive game plan
Inept at times.
TCU sells out to stop the run. That’s what the Horned Frogs do: commit manpower to smashing the run and press WRs. It seemed more apparent that was coming after Optimus Perine smashed West Virginia for more than two bills. (Don’t even get me started on Perine not starting the game.)
You attack TCU deep. It took OU falling behind 14-0 for OU to attempt this. And the deep shots seemed to disappear in the second half. There was no creativity or deception at all.
Utilizing Trevor Knight
This column has been warning about the lack of the QB run all season and hinting that Trevor Knight is really not a 70 percent completion, Air Raid-style QB like Landry Jones or Sam Bradford.
Both issues reared their heads big time on Saturday.
The zone read was there all day. Again. Yet, OU would call QB draws, but not run the zone read.
The offense badly needed a complement to the power running of Perine, and a game plan using Knight's legs could have been it. Instead, in the second half, we witnessed Josh Heupel trying to make Knight a pocket passer. The end result: completing 40 percent of his passes and 2 crippling INTs. Knight played an awful game, and Heupel schemed an awful game for him.
OU seems stuck. Knight needs to run to be effective; OU is afraid Knight is going to get hurt running the ball.
I’m starting to wonder why OU recruited a running QB at all. Unless this disconnect between what Knight can do versus what Heupel keeps trying to have him do gets fixed, OU’s going to lose more games.
My final criticism.
The worst play call of the day: Third-and-2 in the fourth quarter. OU at their own 46. Heupel empties the backfield, and Knight locks onto a slant, leading to the game-winning INT return.
It was the worst call of the game.