The Norman Transcript

October 1, 2013

Stoops hints at idea of using Knight in short yardage

By John Shinn
The Norman Transcript

NORMAN — Oklahoma built up Blake Bell by using him as a short-yardage runner for two seasons before becoming the starter. Coach Bob Stoops hinted Monday a similar situational plan could be in the future for redshirt freshman Trevor Knight.

“It’s not a bad idea, if you think about it. Blake gets a few series off and is not cramping maybe early in the third quarter. Depending if he gets in a situation where he’s winded at all,” he said at his weekly press conference.

Knight, who started OU’s first two games before suffering a knee injury and losing the job to Bell, rushed for 24 yards on two carries during six plays at quarterback while Bell dealt with a cramp against Notre Dame.

“It’s a different pace, definitely, a different speed in how he plays, the way he runs it,” Stoops said of Knight. “Sometimes we are running the same play but it doesn’t look the same because of how Trevor runs it compared to how Blake runs it. He gives you a different dimension.”

Nothing to see: Notre Dame Stadium did not have a video board, so there were no replays for fans and on-the-field coaches to watch Saturday.

Stoops said the absence of one was something he never got used to Saturday.

“I looked for it every time something happened. I always try to see if I saw it right and who missed what. I kept looking up there to no avail,” he said.

Stoops said OU’s coaches in the pressbox were able to see replays on television if OU wanted to challenge a call. It never did in the Notre Dame game.

Sterling effort: Wide receiver Sterling Shepard scored the game-sealing touchdown against Notre Dame with a 54-yard touchdown reception from Bell early in the fourth quarter. The sophomore finished with five catches for 83 yards, but Stoops said his best work came without the ball.

“It’s really fun to watch,” Stoops said. “The guy was blocking everywhere. Hustling, that’s what I’m most proud of. He was outstanding when he didn’t have the ball.”

Here comes the runner: OU didn’t have to deal with a running quarterback against Notre Dame, but it will Saturday against TCU. Trevone Boykin, the Horned Frogs’ quarterback, has rushed for 158 yards in the first four games and has a team-leading 47 carries.

“He’s very shifty,” OU linebacker Eric Striker said of Boykin. “We definitely have to keep our eyes on him … We have to account for him also.”

OU-Texas set for 11 a.m. kickoff: The Big 12 Conference announced Monday that Oklahoma-Texas game will kickoff at 11 a.m. from the Cotton Bowl in Dallas and will be televised by ABC.

The fans attending the games loathe the 11 a.m. start, especially for the Red River Rivalry. Coaches, however, are fans of the early starts.

“If you’re asking me if I wished this game this week was at 11, then yes,” Stoops said. “I would take it every time. I think all coaches do. You get tired of waiting around all day. You never mind it when you know you can wake up and go right at it. Then get in the easy chair in the afternoon when there’s still light out.”

John Shinn

Follow me @john_shinn