NORMAN — Play defense in the Big 12 Conference and you’re going to see a little bit of everything. Kansas State will try to hammer at teams with a heavy dose of the quarterback run game. Texas Tech has no problem throwing the ball 60 times.
The one thing you don’t see very often is the pro style attack Oklahoma will face in the Sugar Bowl against No. 3 Alabama.
“It’s going to be a little different. We kind of got that feel a little bit against Texas, you know, going against pro-style type of plays and offensive schemes. But we don’t necessarily see offenses like this too much in the Big 12. It’s going to be different,” OU cornerback Aaron Colvin said. “But this is what’s good about this little period of time off, is we get to practice it and constantly repetition it, basically. I feel like it’s going to be OK. It’s going to be different, but we just have to adjust.”
The adjustments OU has to make aren’t centered on being able to line up two seconds after the ball is put in play. The Crimson Tide does not run an up-tempo offense. They do motion a lot and make defenses react to it.
“They’re just very well-coached. They execute. They understand schemes very well and how to attack coverage well and attack weaknesses of certain coverages. You have to be aware of what’s going on,” OU defensive coordinator Mike Stoops said. “There’s a lot of movement in their offense, and understanding where we need to be and why we need to be there, I think, is critical in being able to match up with these guys.”
Better safe than sorry: Trevor Knight’s running ability is an element OU cannot do without. The problem has been keeping him on the field. He’s started four games and suffered injuries in two (West Virginia and Oklahoma State).