A potentially crippling loss for OU. The Sooners needed to go at least 2-1 in their three September matchups and now they are looking at 1-2 through non-conference play. The myriad of execution, personnel and coaching errors exploited by Houston don’t appear to be fixable in two weeks for a physically superior, but incredibly similar, Ohio State team, no matter the location of the game.
Made dynamic big plays, then he disappeared.
At times. Scored two big TDs, but still absent at other times.
The Somewhat Good
Evans did a good job stopping the run at times during his debut.
The DL did a good job against the run and pressured Ward. Houston seemed to be in 3rd and long all day. Someone in the DL was doing their job.
The Comically Bad
Bob Stoops can now add the timeout before the Kick Six to his increasing list of special teams gaffes. The touchdown return changed the whole nature of the game.
His day was just so uneven. He missed a critical pitch to Samaje Perine that would have extended a drive. He seemed hesitant to go down field to his new WRs. His scrambling seemed less about extending plays than tempting disaster.
The Really Bad
While it’s obvious to point out how badly Houston abused Dakota Austin, no one in the veteran Sooner secondary made any plays all game long in coverage. Steven Parker got banged up, but returned and proceeded to get burned on a 50-yard completion, one of the many 3rd-and-long situations that Houston converted time and time again. Add in the gift pass interference call that led to the first Houston FG
Mike Stoops' game plan
Terrible. It took Mike so long to realize that Jordan Thomas should have been playing the short side of the field. To be honest, scouting Houston, Thomas should have started there play one. Mike’s pressure schemes never confused Greg Ward, and rushing only three players only was a disaster. Second half was slightly better.
LIncoln Riley’s play calling
Terribly inconsistent and predictable. He abandoned the running game too early in the second half and made some strange calls in the first half. He wasn't attacking Houston's defense and he let the Cougars set the tempo.
Shuffling on the offensive line
If Bill Bedenbaugh is going to keep shuffling the offensive line in August, maybe OU needs to avoid tough opening games. The OL looked confused and out of sync.
It’s one area that I can imagine being improved by game three. That happened last year after a bad start.
Any wide receiver not named Dede Westbrook
The fears of every Sooner fan played out on Saturday. No WRs save for Dede made any big plays. The inability to develop high school WRs not named Ryan Broyles/Kenny Stills/Sterling Shepard now extends to two coaches and about five years.
Abused all day.