NORMAN — Watching a game from 11 months ago isn’t typically high on the game-week preparation list. What teams have done this season is the usual viewing choice.
Oklahoma’s coaches only made their team watch a little bit of last season’s 30-13 loss to Notre Dame. But it was the last 15 minutes of that game that was must-see viewing. It doesn’t take a football genius to see it was the fourth quarter where the Fighting Irish imposed thier will on the Sooners.
“They really kind of dominated us in the fourth quarter last year,” OU cornerback Aaron Colvin said.
Dominate is good way to describe a scenario where the Sooners were outscored 17-0 over the final six minutes, turning a tight game into a very convincing Notre Dame victory.
It was one of three OU losses last season, but it truly was an eye-opener in terms of where it was a football team. It wasn’t tough enough to truly compete with college football’s best.
The 14th-ranked Sooners (3-0) get another shot at No. 22 Notre Dame (3-1) at 2:30 p.m. Saturday at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend, Ind.
OU has resisted all urges to call this a statement game. After all there’s 88 percent of Big 12 Conference schedule that will come after it. It’s just the next game on the calendar.
However, this game will serve as a benchmark for all the changes the Sooners have made in the offseason.
The alterations have mainly been at the line of scrimmage. The Sooners were outmuscled on both sides of it last October at Owen Field. They only rushed for 15 yards and gave 215 on the ground.
OU coach Bob Stoops said Monday at his weekly press conference the outcome of the Notre Dame game alone didn’t force the Sooners revitalizing its run game.