As the dust settles on another Oklahoma Sooners football game, we find the Sooners still undefeated at 9-0 after a 52-21 win over the Texas Tech Red Raiders. It was the smoothest performance Oklahoma has had all year and it was stress-free and smooth sailing throughout.
The offense threw all over the Texas Tech secondary and the Sooners never trailed.
Caleb Williams set more records joining Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray as the only three quarterbacks to throw six touchdown passes and zero interceptions in a game.
The Sooners defense looked quite sturdy as well grabbing a few takeaways in the process. There were some interesting developments to takeaway so without further ado, let’s get started.
Caleb Williams has absolutely altered the trajectory of this team
Without spending too much time rehashing the situation involving the quarterback change with him and Spencer Rattler, Caleb Williams is flat-out a baller.
Caleb Williams threw for 402 yards and six touchdowns as a true freshman and commanded the offense like he was a junior. He looked in control during the game and had no problems setting protections or making plays off-script.
His play has elevated Oklahoma to a spot that they can contend for a conference title and in the College Football Playoff.
He will get every chance to prove himself as November sees Oklahoma playing its toughest opponents of the season consecutively in pursuit of another Big 12 title.
If he plays at this level, there are zero reasons to believe the Sooners won’t win the Big 12 for the seventh time in a row.
Key Lawrence is a KEY player going forward
Key Lawrence was recruited pretty heavily by Alex Grinch and Co. out of high school. They failed then as he ended up at his home school of Tennessee.
After a slow start to his Oklahoma Sooners career, Lawrence is putting it all together and it is special.
Last week, he had eight tackles, two for losses, and a forced fumble while looking like the only defensive player who cared in their sketchy win vs Kansas.
This week he took reps at cornerback as he tried to help his team out who is depleted and looking for answers at the position. He came out Saturday and posted 7 tackles (one for a loss) and had two pass deflections while playing solid coverage against one of the best receivers in the league in Eric Ezukanma.
When Woodi Washington gets back from injury, he’ll take his spot at starting corner, and rightfully so. However, with his play over the last few weeks, Alex Grinch cannot take him off the field as they enter into the toughest part of their season.
Doing so would be coaching malpractice.
Mario Williams starting to flash
In that article, I talked about his lack of explosive plays despite being graded so highly. Pro Football Focus takes into account separation, yards per route run, and other things. Guys also listed on there like Xavier Worthy had lower grades than Williams despite putting up better numbers.
Well, after Saturday, the big play flood gates are open.
Williams had his best game as a Sooner posting five catches for 100 yards and a touchdown. The hamstring that kept him out last week looked recovered and he was getting down the field in a hurry.
His emergence as possibly the third bonafide playmaking receiver to solidify Oklahoma is a major offensive development. The explosive plays are coming and that’s why Oklahoma recruited him.
Isaiah Thomas puts on a dominant performance in Redmond’s return
Isaiah Thomas had a day. Two-pass deflections (one of which led to an interception), a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery while he pressured the Tech quarterbacks all game.
Thomas was able to slide back outside with the return of Jalen Redmond, who had been out of commission due to a knee injury. Thomas worked inside during Redmond’s absence to give the Sooners a pass-rushing threat next to Perrion Winfrey. Despite the depth and Thomas’ efforts it didn’t materialize as he’s much better working off the edge.
His biggest tool is his get-off and his speed. It’s a perfect compliment opposite Nik Bonitto to give the Sooners two dynamic outside pass-rushing threats.
With Redmond back in the interior and Bonitto opposite him, look for more one on one pass-rushing battles for Thomas outside who should take advantage of them going forward.
The Sooners are capable of playing complementary football
For eight weeks, the national and local media wanted to know if Oklahoma could play a complete game. Well, it turns out they are very capable and the defense looked much better when they got two starters back in their secondary and a starter back on the defensive line.
The offensive line continued their maturation and the quarterback bombed a Texas Tech secondary that had no answers. For a cherry on top, we even got a Gabe Brkic field goal longer than 50 yards.
Truly, a complementary performance for Oklahoma.
How many more complete wins can Lincoln Riley coach his team to? He’ll need another one of these as the Sooners head to Waco in two weeks for a major showdown against Baylor with CFP and Big 12 title implications. In the wake of this performance against Texas Tech, the Oklahoma Sooners look capable of beating anyone in the Big 12.