Game Grades: Oklahoma Sooners 59, Iowa State Cyclones 14

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The Defense and Special Teams


The Sooners were really good up front again against Iowa State. The Cyclones got next to nothing out of their running game with just 87 yards on the ground. The defensive line has been pretty solid all season, but struggle a bit over the last three games. Against Iowa State, the line really brought pressure on quarterback Sam Richardson and put a stop to any hopes the Cyclones had of running the ball.


Oklahoma fans have been wondering where Eric Striker was of late. Stoops called a more aggressive defensive game and Striker was back to causing havoc by swatting down passes at the line and in coverage, plugging running holes and putting pressure on Richardson in the backfield. Striker was also able to get back into the quarterback sacking business with a sack of Richardson.

Charles Tapper looked like the Tapper of old spending most of the day in the Iowa State backfield and getting a sack of his own. Tapper also caused a fumble on his sack of Richardson, which was recovered by Jordan Nelson.

Unlike the previous three games, the linebackers did a good job when forced into coverage against an offense that was able to put up 42 points last week on Texas.


This could have possibly been a B after Zack Sanchez was a little too aggressive and fell for a pump fake leading to a 59-yard touchdown pass from Richardson to D’Vario Montgomery in the third quarter. That was about all the secondary gave up though.

All in all the secondary was much better than it had ben of late. While the Sooners were aided a bit by some dropped balls and a few bad throws from Richardson, the coverage was tight all day and the Oklahoma safeties didn’t let guys behind them like they did against Kansas State and TCU.


It was good to see Michael Hunnicutt shake off the nightmare from two weeks ago and get back in the swing of things. Hunnicutt was perfect on extra point attempts and hit his only field goal attempt of the day from 44 yards.

The punt return game is still non-existent even with Sanchez now returning punts. In the kick return game teams have started to put an emphasis on stopping Ross from returning kicks. The nations best kick returner only had two kick returns for a total of 30 yards.

Oklahoma got really lucky in the second quarter. Iowa State went for the fake punt on fourth and two from the Oklahoma 40-yard line and punter Holden Kramer threw a nearly perfect pass to a wide open Qujuan Floyd that was dropped. Floyd didn’t have a defender with 15 yards of him and the Sooners got the ball back with a 28-7 lead. Considering it was clearly a spot in which many thought Iowa State would have gone for it on fourth down, it was surprising that the Sooners were not ready for the fake once the punt team come out onto the field.