For at least one quarter, it looked like the Kansas Jayhawks was setting up to deliver the Oklahoma Sooners their second consecutive defeat. Kansas was moving the ball at will against the Sooners defense and Blake Bell was struggling mightily as Kansas took a 13-0 lead. However, the Sooners responded with 25 unanswered points and ended up beating Kansas, 34-19.
The game opened with Oklahoma failing to move the ball and punting to Kansas who then ate up over four minutes of the clock. They drove down the field for a touchdown, the first time Kansas led Oklahoma in a game since the 2001 season. On the drive, Jeremy Sims ran the ball eight times for 63 yards and Jake Heaps completed two passes in two attempts, including the touchdown strike to Jimmay Mundine.
After a three-and-out, Kansas went on another four minute drive but ended up punting. Keith Ford fumbled on the next Sooners’ drive and Kansas turned the turnover into their second touchdown of the game, a James Sims 11 yard touchdown run. After the Jayhawks missed the extra point, Kansas led the Sooners 13-0 and the only positive note for Oklahoma was the missed PAT.
After that, OU’s defense settled down. Sims had run for 96 yards when he scored that second touchdown, but only had 33 yards rushing the rest of the game. The Sooners also limited quarterback Heaps to a 5-of-13 performance for 16 total passing yards in the game. After that Sims score, the Kansas offense died.
Blake Bell threw a big touchdown to Jaz Reynolds in the second quarter, but Michael Hunnicutt missed a rare point after, making the score 13-6. The next Kansas drive ended in a blocked punt that resulted in a safety to make the score 13-8 and then OU used a trick play, with LeColtan Bester running a reverse and then stopping to throw a 49 yard touchdown pass to Sterling Shepard to give the Sooners a 15-13 lead. OU went into halftime with an 18-13 lead and never looked back.
Blake Bell threw another touchdown in the third quarter to Shepard to extend the lead to 25-13.
It looked like Kansas might be getting things back when they blocked a Jed Barnett punt and took over on the OU six. They turned that Sims second touchdown of the game, but OU retook the momentum by blocking the Kansas point after and Aaron Colvin returned it for a two point return. Damien Williams added a late fourth quarter touchdown to give OU their 34-19 win.
Blake Bell finished the game with a low stat line, completing 15-of-25 (60-percent) for 131 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Sterling Shepard was, once again, the best receiver on the team, with seven receptions for 82 yards and two touchdowns.
The running game was a true committee. OU ran the ball 45 times for 235 yards, with Williams running for 56, Bell running for 53, Roy Finch adding 53, Trey Millard running for 34, Brennan Clay adding 20 and Keith Ford finishing with 19 before his fumble.
The game seemed harder than it should have been for the Oklahoma Sooners. OU outgained Kansas, 415 yards to 201 yards. While it was nice to see OU rebound from the Texas loss (OU is undefeated after the Red River Rivalry under Bob Stoops), it wasn’t reassuring with Texas Tech and Baylor both coming up. OU will need to work hard if they don’t want to get embarrassed in these next two Big 12 games.