Let’s just go straight into some random observations.
*The Sooners didn’t set the world on fire on offense today, which had a lot to do with some wicked wind in Lawrence. The Jayhawks have a sneaky good defensive line, too, and they caused plenty of problems for OU up front.
OU averaged a season-low 6.6 yards per offensive play. It wasn’t particularly efficient, but it was fine. Meh.
*On the other hand, the Sooner defense looked sharp.
Sure, the Jayhawks stink. OU still executed well enough to allow a measly 2.5 yards per play. The Sooners played particularly well against the run, surrendering a little more than a yard per attempt to KU.
*KU coach David Beaty and offensive coordinator Doug Meacham clearly came into the game planning to target freshman cornerback Tre Norwood. The rookie more than held his own. Norwood was credited with breaking up two passes. When KU did complete throws in his direction, he limited the damage.
Through two games, Norwood has played light years better than senior Jordan Thomas did for most of the year.
*I’d be interested in hearing why the coaching staff went back to Parnell Motley at the other cornerback spot. Freshman Tre Brown earned solid marks in his first start last week.
To be fair, I think the best scenario for the Sooners would be Motley recapturing his form from early in the season. He played well against the Jayhawks.
*OU’s defensive line has evolved from a solid unit to one of the team’s true strengths.
Neville Gallimore’s return helped shore up the run defense, and Du’Vonta Lampkin is generating pressure up the middle from the nose tackle position.
If the Sooners do make the College Football Playoff, the strength of the front three will be a big plus against a field that will likely include a batch of power running teams.
*I like seeing Grant Calcaterra (four receptions, 67 yards) taking on a larger role in the offense. I still hold out hope that Lincoln Riley will come up with some kind of package for the postseason that puts Calcaterra on the field with Mark Andrews - and maybe Dmitri Flowers - at the same time.
*With 16 carries, Rodney Anderson has clearly taken over as the featured running back in OU’s offense. I expected to see more of Abdul Adams and Trey Sermon, but neither had a huge role in the game plan.
To his credit, Sermon laid a filthy block on Hollywood Brown’s catch-and-run touchdown late in the first half. He also had a nice TD run in the second half.
*As I mentioned earlier, not the best day for OU’s offensive line. I still don’t feel all that great about the Sooners’ ability to convert in short-yardage situations.
*My only real comment on the chippy atmosphere of the game is that I thought the officials did a terrible job of taking control of the action early in the game. It spiraled out of control as it wore on.