knight ‘The Knight Show’

Image via zimbio.com

The biggest story going into the 2013 season was Oklahoma’s quarterback situation. Eventually Trevor Knight was named the starter, but then lost the gig within the first two games of the season because of injury against West Virginia. In those two games, he threw for a combined 205 yards and 4 TDs. Not the greatest of stats mind you, but they were his first two games as a redshirt freshman so I believe nerves got the best of him.

With the injury keeping Trevor out of the following game against Tulsa, the Bell-dozer took over, played well for a couple games then had some of his own struggles, yet remained the starter through the Iowa State game. Knight would then retake the reins of the starting job after Bell suffered a concussion against the Cyclones. Knight would go on to finish the regular season as the starter and in OU’s final three games, he threw for a combined 260 yards and just 1 TD. Again, not the greatest of stats, but remember he only played a portion of the Iowa State game and was knocked out of Bedlam just prior to the end of the first half. So he only played a total of eight complete quarters over those final three games. Also factor in Josh Heupel putting the ball in Brennan Clay’s hands at the end of the season, and the outstanding job he did great carrying the ball.

The passing game became secondary. And yet even in spite of that, Trevor did show us a bit of a light as to what he had to offer in those three games.

Fast forward to the lead up to the bowl game and OU “didn’t have a chance to win” against Alabama. Many believed it was primarily due to the lack of a pass game and a big question mark at QB. Remember, heading into the game and with Bell coming off that come-from-behind victory performance against Oklahoma State, no one outside of the Switzer Center actually knew who was going to get the start against Bama. However, 348 yards and 4 TDs later we all knew the media and “experts” were full of crap when it came to their doubts regarding Knight as a QB.

So what changed in our passing game that made Trevor look like an All-American QB?

Absolutely nothing.

Momentum is huge in college football and throughout the year, Trevor never really got the opportunity to get any momentum going. At times he showed us a lot of great individual plays, but he also made a lot mistakes due to his youth and inexperience. Frankly, plays which you’d expect from a redshirt freshman. But he also had a nine week period where he barely touched the field. With him on the field, we saw the pass and run game work in a more consistent fashion.

He has the footwork and agility to roll out and make a precise throw on the run. He is decisive and knows when to tuck it in and go, or pass the ball after reading his levels. As we saw in the Sugar Bowl, he can also sit in the pocket and make the throws to his receivers for a big play. All he really needed was the game time experience to practice and perfect his skills.

With this new group of receivers, Trevor needs to work on his timing routes. That was an issue early on last year with Jalen Saunders and the boys. He has proven he can throw the deep ball, screen pass, quick pass, and anything else you can think of. With no pressure of losing the starting job this spring, he he will feel much more comfortable in the position he’s being expected to lead this OU offense.

While interviewing him before Bedlam, he had mentioned the fact he wanted to “have fun” playing ball again. He did that vs Alabama.

‘The Knight Show’ should continue to keep OU fans happy for a long time to come.


  • Jed

    What do you forecast as our split between designed pass and designed run this season? My question is rooted in the fact that Knight knows he can run on his own and he knows he’s got a ‘go to’ option in Shepard, but after that it’s all new-ish. So it’s a bit of a blank page. Your guess?

    • dahldennsull

      anything less than 50+% run is a mistake in my mind. You have to run the ball to set up everything in your offense. We became so pass heavy when Landry was our QB and I have no idea why (maybe to cover our piss poor o-line recruiting and coaching).

      A stat people don’t realize: When Sam won the Heisman, we ran on 54% of plays that year and had 2-1,000 yard rushers… AND OUR QB WON THE HEISMAN. It’s amazing what a strong run game will open up for a QB and an entire offense.

      • Jed

        55:45 run seems about right, taking into account that some ‘run’ will include Trevor pulling the ball down and running even if the play was designed pass.

      • wolfbuilder

        I think it had more to do with the type of recruits we had and the style of offence we wanted, yes Bill is a better oline coach but remember the oline that started the sugar bowl wasnt recruited by Bill also its not like we had AD or Murray in the backfield. Clay was a solid back when healthy and Finch was great with the ball in his hands if he remembered it was a play for him to get the ball, Dom was great for a walkon but and DD was good.

        We center the offense around our best players and sence 08 that was the wr or the QB IMO

        • Mark hale

          I predict WR problems early on in the 2014 season. QBs and WRS can practice all they want to, but, there will be 3 new WR’s in OU’s 4 WR sets and none of the new players have much experience in Games. Games have a different speed than practices. We’ll see a lot of short throws,( ‘dinks’, and ‘dunks’ early in 2014).

          • Sooner Ray

            Your thinking is conventional and very accurate most years but I’m going to be optimistic and think that we have had a lot of talent in the background that are going to be ready for the big time. We likely could see some easy passes early on to make sure everyone is comfortable but we see that about every year.

          • J.K. Abbott

            Amen Ray. I’m excited about Shep being back and woods and Neal getting their shots. Woods is a freaking explosive athlete. If the wr’s fail I’ll take a public beat down. Im very confident in Woods, Neal, Smallwood, KJ, Bennett and not to mention Shep is back.

          • J.K. Abbott

            I respectfully disagree. I love the Woods and Neal. Plus Shep is back. I actually think Woods and Neal will be more explosive then Scuba was.

      • Shifty

        Hopefully we utilize a tight end like in 08 as well…no reason we can’t have a dynamic offense like we did back then

  • ratman

    Trevor was always our best qb last year, but Blake did a good job in some games too. We don’t beat OSU without Blake.

    • Eric Hoffpauir

      I think Knight could have gotten us there as well. Bell wasn’t doing so hot until the end of the game, and Knight was able to piece together at least one drive as well.

      • ratman

        Knight was hurt so it is questionable?? Bell bailed Thompson out.

        • Eric Hoffpauir

          Fair enough.

  • SoonerfanTU

    Is there any reason at all to fear Knight coming out and not playing anywhere close to the level he did against Bama this year? I don’t really think there is, but it’s a scary thought none-the-less.

  • Sooner Ray

    Confidence is huge when you’re the QB. If you can trust that everyone else is going to do their jobs it allows you to focus on the field and relax. I also think the game eventually slowed a bit for Trevor which does a lot to calm nerves. I don’t expect the flawless play of the bowl game but I do expect him to have a high level of play. The only thing to fear this year is injury.

    • Todd

      Exactly! An injury to Knight is the only thing I see keeping us from making a serious run at #8. Well, that and the yearly dropping of a game to a random Big12 opponent.

      • captfoss

        We actually haven’t dropped a “random” game to a Big XII opponent since Texas Tech in 2011. The past two seasons, if we lost to a team, it’s because (1) it was a rivalry game (2) they were better than us.

        • Todd

          you’re right, TT just doesn’t seem like that long ago, and I know Texas is a rivalry game, but it still falls into the “there’s no way we should have lost that game” category.

          • captfoss

            Considering we’d lost our two best, least-replaceable defenders for the season and Texas always has enough elite athletes to have a punchers chance to beat anyone in the country… It’s no 2007 Colorado or 2001 OSU.

          • Todd

            true, the Texas loss has more reasonable justifications, including Case saving Mack, but to me it hurt just as bad, especially since I live in the Dallas suburbs and I’m surrounded by delusional Longhorns and Aggies.

          • Sooner Ray

            I will never admit that we should have lost the texass game, no way they were better. We just went in with the wrong game plan and I will stick to that story. Sorry you gotta live in that mire bud! :-)

          • JJ

            I subscribe to the theory everyone was drunk but Josh, who should have been. Worst game plan ever. Texas was terrible…

          • J.K. Abbott

            I’m not an excuse guy but Cap is right. As good as Dom and Wade ended up, to be thrown into the fire on the Cotton Bowl floor is tough. Plus Case played out of his mind that day. The offense didn’t p33 a drop. You cant go three and out a gazillion times, if you do the well is going to break.

    • blaster1371

      Yep. Knight not hitting those early swing passes and wheel routes really gave the impression of a guy not ready for the big stage. I never had that impression that that was still the case about midway through the K-State game.

  • Zack

    It will be more of a run based game I’m sure. But heupel showed some real adjustments with tempo and play calling in the sugar bowl that makes me think the passing game will be successful. As long as the game plan calls for at least 5 bombs just to get the safeties to back off, then the running backs will have plenty of room to work. Keep in mind this will be the most dynamic running game in the stoops era.

    • BR

      love that last sentence Zack…:)

      • Zack

        Thanks not sure it will be the most successful but they have some really special guys that bring different elements to the run game.

        • Gary Robbins

          I’m more of a run and gun type person also (65- run-35pass). Our offensive starting line will be mean and nasty. The depth is a little concerning at this time as how a couple of injuries would affect.. Stoops said all the present injured will be good to go by the summer. OT D. Williams done 13 reps of 325 lbs-pretty strong. It would take me 3 reps to do a total of 325 lbs. Lol.

          • Zack

            I hear you man and I’d be sore as hell after 3 reps.

          • blaster1371

            All this talk about exercising makes me ……. Want ice cream!

          • Sooner Ray

            If you freeze your ice cream real hard, you get a workout when you try to scoop it!

          • J.K. Abbott

            http://s4.hubimg.com/u/2220415_f260.jpg#12%20oz%20curls%20260×348

            I’m partial to those 12 oz curls myself.

        • J.K. Abbott

          No doubt Zack.. Where Mixon might find the field with Johnny Stud dogs in front of him like Ford and Ross is Mixon’s uncanny receiving skills. Mixon can flat out catch the freaking rock. That alone gives him a shot to contribute as a frosh. Good third down back.

    • J.K. Abbott

      Most Dynamic in stoops era? Hmm AD’s frosh year was maybe just a tad bit dynamic. He did end up in New York at the end of the year.

      http://cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/w640-5619a9fa127f71e2755acaa8c86c4b5f.jpg

      • Zack

        No doubt that was the most exciting and best running attack of the stoops era and probably will remain. And demarco was elite as well. But what I mean is there’s 4 guys who bring different elements and may be the most collective talent.

        • J.K. Abbott

          I hear you dude. I read your second post after I posted AD picture. I think the same. definitely exciting times.

          • Zack

            Yeah man we’ll be disappointed all 4 of them can’t be out there at all times. And what’s crazy is there will be another big recruit at running back in 2015 class.

  • Leroy Jenkins

    Not worried about Knight & the offense. Our stable of RB’s are among the best so by keeping it run-first, a lot of pressure will be off TK. He has all the leadership qualities in the world & should handle the pressure well.

    I AM worried about the backup QB situation. TK missed five games last year due to injury. If he goes down, will Cody Thomas be prepared enough to take over? I’m glad he’s dual-sport, but to me the backup QB spot is the most concerning on the offense. I know Stoops & Co. are saying the right things about Cody, but I hope he can get enough work in this offseason to be prepared if TK goes down.

    • Colby Pearce

      Completely agree. I can’t wait to hear more about the backup QB situation once spring practice starts.

    • Zack

      I agree with the concern of the backup QB but I’m less worried than before. Last year Knight missed some games but being knocked out of the wvu game was considered “precautionary” but was more of an excuse to say let’s give bell a shot. Then Bell had the Tulsa and notre dame games on his résumé and that helped him keep the job while he was struggling. All I’m really saying though is they probably won’t hold him out with a sore anything only if there’s a tear or concussion.

    • blaster1371

      Without any definitive proof I have the impression that Cody Thomas May be further along than one might think for a red shirt freshman. I draw on the idea of Kendall Thompson leaving early implies that even if Knight were to go down ( last season proves that a possibility as his injuries really weren’t flukes or plain odd) it was not a sure bet he would be the guy replacing Knight.

      Knight could be a good one. Definitely has all the makings of one.

      • Sooner Ray

        Totally agree that Thompson doesn’t leave if he didn’t see some exceptional talent coming on.

      • J.K. Abbott

        Good thoughts on KT Blaster. It’s not like he is getting handed the reins at Utah. He has some work to do there to be the starter. Heck he’s even missing Spring practices for the Utes. look guys Cody was a big league get. I think sometimes we forget how good CT is. USC, Notre Dame, Florida, Auburn just to name a few offered CT. The only time Ive ever heard Robert Allen give OU credit was when CT committed to OU. He just went on and on how good CT was.

        • blaster1371

          I am with you there about CT. He is one I am really looking forward to see in Spring action.

  • wolfbuilder

    I hope Knight can play great, think he had what it takes but there is a lot of new guys he will have to lean on.

    I want to say lean on the running game early and build from there but one or 2 things have to happen, FORD has to hold on 2 the ball or Ross has to know really pick up the Offense, to me if one or both happen Trevor will be fine

  • Doobie74OU

    I agree! Great Things to come this year for TK! He really just acted relaxed and calm in the Sugar Bowl. If he stays that relaxed and “Has Fun” he will be just plain AWESOME this year!

  • OU_Sooners

    I’m definitely excited for the 3rd WR that will stand out for OU. There are so many possibilities. Also, excited for a TE to get some playing time as well.

    • J.K. Abbott

      Same here dude. I think Woods is going to have a break out year. The kid is just too d$m talented. He tore it up on scout as a true frosh. Scout teamer of the year. Derrick wasn’t and Army All American and have the offers he had and be average. Look out for Woods and Neal.

  • Fear The Magic

    Im not too worried about the running game as I think that between Ford, Ross, Smith, Mixon, Perrine and Brooks at LEAST 2 will prove to be more than good RBs. My biggest concern is as a few have mentioned TKs staying healthy. As good as Cody Thomas’s potential might be its absolutely essential that TK remains healthy. Without him theres no #8 this year.
    As for the WRs, we know what Shep brings which is all good but after him we have a bunch of question marks although I for one am very optimistic about that position. I’ll say this much though. I believe getting Quick was MAJORLY BIG. We definitely need his speed to replace what Jalen brought to the table. ( Looking @ watch ) Is it September yet?

  • Eddie and Amber

    So excited to see the improvement in Knights game. Throughout the entire season, I didn’t think Knight nor Bell could through a touch pass with a high level of accuracy. Then came Bell’s back of the endzone pass to win vs OSU and the entire Bama game with Knight.

    Can’t wait to read Brainiacs coverage of spring ball!!!

    • Sooner Ray

      I think the coverage here will be like no other!, I think you’re the first “couples poster” I’ve ever noticed….LOL!

      • J.K. Abbott

        No doubt. TFB are tough to beat. Check out Sooner Sports also. I love their cut ups/film of practice.

  • Sooner Ray

    Appears OU offered 2015 FB Chandler Cox. Offer list is impressive so must be real deal.

    • J.K. Abbott

      I love the fact that OU utilizes the FB. FB’s are becoming extinct. Not at OU.

      • Sooner Ray

        It’s our bread and butter.

  • JJsooner1

    After watching the Sugar Bowl again, TK looked like Sam Bradford with so many of his throws. He threw 4 passes, that I counted, in a hole the size of a coffee can and on 3 of them he was moving when he released the ball. That’s bigtime.

    P.S. I want revenge on Texa$$. I hope we beat them like a rented mule.

    • Sooner Ray

      We will own them and grill bevo burgers afterwards!

      • Todd

        bevo, it’s what’s for dinner!

        • Sooner Ray

          I’ll have some pepper jack cheese on mine please.

          • JJsooner1

            Monsterdog wants beef jerky:-)

  • EasTex

    To me Knight showed the classic reaction when a player is no longer a freshman, the game “slowed down.” He saw things more clearly and thus had more confidence. After that experience in the Sugar Bowl, Knight will never be the same QB again. His performance was a threshold moment.

  • nate g

    Football is a game of inches and OU/Knight was very fortunate vs Bama. It was long overdue to bounce our way! Once Knight learns the “touch” game, he’ll elevate his status as a better than Bomar QB.

  • Billy

    I am worried there is going to be a little too much pressure on Knight. This reminds me a little bit of the UT/Gilbert hype after their game with Bama.