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Sunday, November 23, 2008
Sooners offense erupts for another huge performance

By ESPN.com staff
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Griffin

NORMAN, Okla. -- The Sooners' final margin Saturday night over Texas Tech was 65-21 and,  truthfully, could have been worse. So much for any kind of style points. These Sooners just prefer to mash opponents into oblivion after scoring the most points that Tech has ever allowed in its 84-season football history.

 
 Jackson Laizure/US Presswire
 Oklahoma's Chris Brown rushed for 108 yards and three touchdowns as No. 5 Oklahoma pounded No. 2 Texas Tech in a 65-21 blowout.

After the game, Oklahoma offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson was lamenting the plays his team left on the field which could have made the final score even more one-sided.

"All I know is that we got stopped one time in the red zone," Wilson said. "I didn't like that."

But that might have been nitpicking -- even if Oklahoma was turned away at the Tech 1 on downs late in the fourth quarter.

The Sooners rushed for 299 yards, passed for 326 yards and averaged 8.0 yards per snap. It was as thorough an offensive performance against a good defense as has been seen around Owen Field in a long time.

"We proved tonight that when we are balanced, we are a really hard team to stop," said Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford. "I have to give credit to the guys up front because they played absolutely amazingly tonight. They gave me time to sit back there and pick at my open receivers. I think they are the reason we won tonight."

Bradford completed only 14 passes, but still blistered Tech for four touchdown passes and 304 yards. And he was pulled after one series in the fourth quarter, likely after many viewers back at home had given up watching this one-sided rout.

The sophomore quarterback was again the instigator in a quick Oklahoma start. The Sooners jumped on the shell-shocked Red Raiders for six touchdowns in their first seven possessions and cruised from there.

"Sam did great tonight," Oklahoma wide receiver Manny Johnson said. "His stats say it all."

And they do.

It continued his sizzling streak since the Texas game. The Sooners have won five straight games as Bradford has averaged 331.6 yards per game. He's throwing 19 touchdowns against one interception during that period as the Sooners have rang up 59.2 points per game.

A big key early was the running of DeMarco Murray and Chris Brown, who combined for 192 yards in the first half as they averaged more than 7 yards per carry.

Murray, who sustained a season-ending knee injury against the Red Raiders last season in Lubbock, said that he was amazed at the open spaces he saw in Tech's defense.

"Our offensive line was getting me into space and I wasn't getting touched until I was five or 10 yards down the field," said Murray, who finished with a game-high 125 yards and added four catches for 71 yards. "With them blocking like that I was just feeling it. And once we started fast, we just started feeling it."

While Wilson was beating himself up over the missed touchdown at the end, there weren't many other things he could complain about. The Sooners are averaging more than a point a minute over the last three games, ringing up 62 points against Nebraska, 66 against Texas A&M and 65 against Tech on Saturday night.

And the fact it came against Tech, which had played opponents like Texas and Oklahoma State strongly in its recent games and beaten the Sooners two of the last three games made it even sweeter.

"Those guys had come in here playing great defense and the computers had them ranked No. 1 in the nation," Wilson said. "They held Texas to eight yards rushing in one half. They gave Oklahoma State all they wanted. We came out and did a good job of being physical and didn't make a lot of negative plays. It was a strong effort."