Game Grades: Oklahoma Sooners 42, Texas Tech Red Raiders 30

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The Oklahoma Sooners avoided disaster on Saturday by coming from behind to beat the Texas Tech Red Raiders 42-30. It was most definitely the tale of two halves for Bob Stoops and his Sooners as they trailed 14-7 at the half before rushing their way to 35 second half points.

The Sooners passed the test, but didn’t exactly make the honor roll.



Let’s get real here. We aren’t grading out guys on a curve because of their lack of experience. If that were the case Trevor Knight wouldn’t have been torn apart by fans and media for his 26 for 32 and 318 yard performance in the Kansas State loss. He definitely wasn’t graded on a curve when he was making his first start last year. So, we won’t do that with Cody Thomas either. He played horrible in the first half and managed to stay out of the way and make a few running plays in the second half.

On the day Thomas ended up completing 10 of 20 passes for 133 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions. In the second half Josh Heupel finally wised up a bit and holstered the passing game in favor of a heavy dose of Samaje Perine runs and some nifty keepers by Thomas. Thomas ran for 103 yards on eight carries.

While it was clearly the success of Perine that opened up some room for Thomas to make plays with his feet, it was also nice to see Thomas come back in the second half with his chin up and running hard. He definitely doesn’t shy away from contact.

While he didn’t do anything to hurt his team in the second half and did good when asked to carry the ball, the overall grade for his game on Saturday has to be no higher than a C. That’s just part of what comes with throwing three interceptions in one half. If I could split it into halves I would have said an F in the first half and an A in the second half. That’s pretty up and down, but isn’t that what we are used to from this team in 2014?


Coming into this game the talk was that Perine was slowing down in his freshman season and that Alex Ross should be getting more of the carries. Perine answered that talk with 213 yards on 25 carries. Interestingly enough Heupel has been making some Adrian Peterson comparisons lately when talking about Perine. Those were definitely some AD type numbers. Perine was flat-out dominant Saturday and just could not be stopped in the second half.

Alex Ross and Keith Ford didn’t get too many carries once Perine got on a hot streak. You’ve got to give Heupel credit for sticking to him when he was successful. That’s something we haven’t seen Heupel do much over the past few years. Ross finished with 27 yards and Ford had 25. Ford apparently had some sort of injury that slowed him down, but Stoops has not made clear the nature of the injury.

Former walk-on Aaron Ripkowski finally got some carries in short yardage situations and was spectacular. Ripkowski ran for 11 yards on four carries. Three of those carries were on third or fourth-and-short. An area the Sooners have struggled in all season. It was so effective, it left fans wondering where that play was on fourth-and-one at TCU or on the goal line versus Kansas State.


It’s hard to grade the receivers when they just weren’t really a part of the game plan. In the first half when Heupel lost his mind and thought for some reason it would be a good idea to pass, the receivers really didn’t have a chance to make plays because of Tomas’ inaccuracy.

A penalty on Michiah Quick was one of the only real hiccups and Durron Neal made a couple of really nice catches, including a touchdown to go along with his 57 yards on four carries. Quick and K.J. Young both made catches and did a good job blocking on some long runs by Perine in the second half.

The Sooners were once again without Sterling Shepard thanks to his groin injury. Shepard gave it a go on the Sooners first possession, but came up gimpy again and missed the rest of the game.


While we usually don’t give out grade on the offensive line, they deserve mention when the offense has its third dominant rushing game of the year. Perine made some great plays and did a good job of gaining yards after contact, but the offensive line was just awesome on Saturday. The biggest runs of the day came on plays in which huge hole were opened for Perine.