The Norman Transcript

OU Sports

October 27, 2007

Seeking a turnover turnaround

Sooners have to take care of the ball

Oklahoma offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson sounded a bit like the character Howard Beale in “Network” when talking about the offense’s penchant for turnovers this week.

He never said, “I’m mad as hell,” but he made it clear he’s not going to take it anymore.

“Bottom line is: We’re going to need greater attention in practice if we think our guys are careless in a game,” Wilson said. “If a guy makes a mistake, he’s going to come out.”

He stopped short of issuing a zero-tolerance policy toward fumbles. But the level of tolerance will be microscopic when the Sooners return to the field Nov. 3 against Texas A&M.;

The edict is out of necessity. Fumbles by running backs Allen Patrick and DeMarco Murray last Saturday at Iowa State ran the Sooners’ turnover total to 15 for the season.

Wilson estimated those giveaways have resulted in 34 points for opponents. The fact the point total isn’t higher is credit to the Sooner defense, which has been put in some tough spots over the last two games. Two of OU’s three turnovers against the Cyclones came on the Sooner side of the field.

One resulted in a touchdown. The other two failed to yield points.

“That’s, basically, every time you turn it over you might as well put three on the scoreboard, is what it equates to,” Wilson said. “But in reality, you keep doing that enough you’re going to keep teams in the game. We got their crowd involved the other day.”

Want to know the main reason the Sooners have struggled in both Big 12 road games? Six turnovers (three at Colorado and three at Iowa State) had a lot to do with it.

Wilson’s message hasn’t fallen on deaf ears.

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