Oklahoma Football – Sooners Wire

  • October 14, 2022

The Oklahoma Sooners need a win in the biggest way when the Kansas Jayhawks come to town on Saturday. Losers of three straight, the Sooners haven’t looked good on either side of the ball.
The defense is struggling to find its identity, and the offense has been inconsistent. Dillon Gabriel is expected back and that should help the offense find a much better rhythm and balance than against the Texas Longhorns a week ago, when the passing game was nonexistent.
But even with Gabriel back, this game feels like a tough matchup. A Jayhawks offense that has been rolling squares off against a reeling Sooners defense.
For the second straight week, quarterback availability is the big storyline. Jayhawks starting QB Jalon Daniels will not be available for this game. Instead, Jason Bean will start in his place. Bean played well in the matchup with the Sooners a year ago and looked really good in the second half of Kansas’ loss to the TCU Horned Frogs a week ago.
Get set for Saturday’s game with our Sooners Wire staff predictions plus a look at how analysts across the country expect this game to go.
Oklahoma finds itself in an important game on Saturday. The game against Kansas doesn’t have Big 12 championship ramifications. That feels like a lost cause. However, this game is important for the program itself because of how things have gone over the last three weeks. Vibes were immaculate after a win against Nebraska before the Sooners were humbled by Kansas State, TCU and Texas.
They have to show resiliency and find a way to win in against a top-25 Kansas team. Kansas has been one of college football’s best stories, led by quarterback Jason Daniels. It looks doubtful he plays, but in steps backup Jason Bean who had a good game against Oklahoma last year when the Sooners barely escaped Lawrence.
I see this as a game decided in the fourth quarter, and I think the expected return of Dillon Gabriel is the difference. The offense may never look worse than it did against Texas, but getting their QB1 back should help.
He’ll throw for two touchdowns while Jovantae Barnes and Marcus Major find pay dirt. Eric Gray will lead the team in rushing yards, and we’ll see an interception and a few more negative plays generated by the front seven to help seal the game.
Oh, and the new ‘Unity” uniforms will give a little boost to a team in desperate need to cling to anything to get them out of this funk.
Contact/Follow Bryant Crews
It quite literally can’t get worse for the Sooners after last week. The Longhorns took advantage of a team without a quarterback and absolutely dominated an overmatched defense.
Thankfully, Jason Bean isn’t Quinn Ewers, and Kansas offensive coordinator Andy Kotelnicki isn’t Steve Sarkisian. The defense will not hold the Jayhawks under 30, but at least will be able to slow them.
Dillon Gabriel’s return could quite possibly save the season. Jeff Lebby’s offense works. We know it does. If Gabriel comes in with better accuracy than he showed against TCU, the Sooners are in good shape.
The Jayhawks have a very bad pass defense. There’s no covering Marvin Mims or Jalil Farooq with the defensive backs they have. Expect a big day out of the OU WR room.
This will be a huge bounce-back win for the Crimson and Cream. Book it.
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The Kansas Jayhawks can score. They’re one of the best offenses in the country, averaging 38.8 points per game. Averaging 215 rushing yards per game, the Jayhawks have one of the best rushing attacks in all of football.
On the flip side, the Oklahoma Sooners have one of the worst run defenses in college football, allowing 207 rushing yards per game, which is 122nd out of 131 teams in the Football Bowl Subdivision.
On paper, this is another bad matchup for a defense that’s struggled to stop other really good offenses: Kansas State, TCU, and Texas. Oklahoma allowed 48 points per game during those three games. The defense has been historically bad, but all of that can change in one game. Starting with Kansas. If it can find a way to string together a few stops and keep the Jayhawks from manageable third downs, it will be able to get off the field with greater regularity.
The biggest difference in this one will have to be the offense. The Oklahoma Sooners’ offense will be able to score against a Kansas defense that’s 72nd in the country, allowing 26 points per game.
The return of Dillon Gabriel is the key. If he plays and looks sharp in the early going, it will take pressure off of the defense to have to make every stop. Gabriel’s return opens up so much of the offense for the Oklahoma Sooners, and they need his passing ability to take focus away from a strong rushing attack led by Eric Gray.
Look for Oklahoma to play a little bit more ball-control offense this week, still running their hurry-up but utilizing more of a “hurry-up and wait” approach to protect their defense a bit.
Here’s an interesting tidbit. The Cheez-It Bowl selects a national team of the week based on its performance. In the last three weeks, the award has gone to Kansas State, TCU and Texas. The common element in their selection? All won the award because of their respective wins over Oklahoma. Not only are we picking Kansas, but we’re also calling for the Cheez-It Bowl 4-peat! – Barry Lewis, Killer Frogs
The Jayhawks travel to Oklahoma with QB Jalon Daniels likely not playing, while the Sooners are expected to get back their quarterback Dillon Gabriel. However, Jason Bean exceeded expectations as the backup for KU last week. Also, Kansas ranks third in the Big 12 in rushing offense, while Oklahoma’s rushing defense is the worst in the Big 12, giving up more than 65 yards per game more than any other team in the league. Also, Oklahoma ranks second-worst in the Big 12 in sacks given up, while Kansas is tied for the lead in sacks. Take away the name on the front of the jersey and this line doesn’t make sense. The Pick: Kansas plus-9. – Pete Mundo, Heartland College Sports
Gabriel played tremendously for the Sooners prior to his injury, while backup Davis Beville led Oklahoma straight into the worst loss in program history last weekend. Beville and OU have no other option but to improve off a 49-0 shutout. With the game being played in Norman and the rush from Kansas to prep a new quarterback this quickly, Oklahoma should bounce back. Prediction: Oklahoma 24, Kansas 16 – Max Escarpio, Bleacher Report
This is assuming Gabriel is back and good enough to be back to form. Kansas will keep the offense moving, but being back at home – and with a desperate sense of urgency – the Sooners will bounce back from the debacle in Dallas and get a win. – Pete Fiutak, College Football News
This is a must-win game for coach Brent Venables and the Sooners. Kansas will likely be without starting quarterback Jalon Daniels, but his back-up, Jason Bean, looked competent a week ago against TCU’s secondary. Call it close, but if Oklahoma gets back Gabriel, it finds a way to pull away late. At least the Jayhawks were ranked for two weeks, right? Oklahoma 37, Kansas 31 – Cole Thompson, Inside the Bears
Oklahoma’s tough losing streak will continue in this one, even with the Sooners at home. Kansas 28, Oklahoma 24 – Collier Logan, Inside the Bears
The tables have turned. Kansas is ranked and Oklahoma is not. The mind boggles. It sounds like OU quarterback Dillon Gabriel may play. If so, I think the Sooners break the losing streak. Oklahoma 27, Kansas 23 – Matthew Postins, Inside the Bears
While the undefeated Kansas Cinderella story came to an end last week at the hands of TCU, now the Jayhawks have a chance to bounce back against a reeling Oklahoma team. Despite this being a road game, and Kansas potentially starting a backup quarterback, the Jayhawks will dispatch Oklahoma to reach bowl eligibility and send the Sooners spiraling even further. Kansas 38, Oklahoma 24 – Connor Zimmerlee, Inside the Bears
So what am I going to do? I am going to be a homer and take KU to win outright. KU has never been more confident heading into an OU game in these players’ lifetimes (KU did not play OU in 2006 or 2007). KU is going to beat OU for the first time since 1997 when Terry Allen’s Jayhawks won, 20-17, and for the first time in Norman since Glen Mason’s Jayhawks won 52-24. – Tim Reddin, Rock Chalk Talk
The Sooners might be in a tailspin while allowing an average of 48.3 points during their three-game losing streak, all within the Big 12. However, should Kansas’ upstart 2022 campaign include a win in Norman, it might just be the defining moment of its season. Looking to rebound from their first ’22 defeat, the Jayhawks have dropped 17 straight to the Sooners and last won at Oklahoma in 1996. Trying to end that slide without injured stud quarterback Jalon Daniels (shoulder), likely makes the task tougher. Then again, this is a Kansas squad that doesn’t seem to care about the past. Prediction: Oklahoma – Jeff Mezydlo, Yard Barker
Contact/Follow us @SoonersWire on Twitter, and like our page on Facebook to follow ongoing coverage of Oklahoma news, notes, and opinions. Let us know your thoughts, and comment on this story below. Join the conversation today. You can also follow John on Twitter @john9williams.
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