Trench Warfare…Oklahoma Vs. UCLA

Hey the Sooners are 2-0!  They’ve looked much better than I could have hoped them to this early in the season.  After rewatching the game, the issues the Sooners had Saturday are academic.  They’re easily correctible with film study and attention to detail.


Exhibit A…Right out of the gate, the Bruins hit em with the tight end down the seam.  With a mobile QB, Murray and Bolton are giving the QB a lot of respect and fail to get as deep on their drop as they need to.  With the rush bearing down on the bruin QB, if Curtis is deep as he needs to be here, think Torrance Marshall against Texas A&M or Florida State.  At bare minimum it forces the qb to pump fake and allow the rush to get there.




As they got down by the goal line, Gallimore had penetration, but his compadres played a little too high on their pad level, and didn’t get off the blocks.  They allowed themselves to get washed down and gave the running back a seam to get into.




In short yardage, cutting off the backside is imperative if you’re going to have success.  Oklahoma does a great job here with Carson Meier blocking back, as well as Cody Ford cutting off those backside defenders.  Ben Powers & Bobby Evans do an outstanding job getting vertical movement for Rodney.  And How about Troy James?!?!  The guy is an animal and did a great job with his technique.  Flat out drove his guy out of the screen.  Love it when I see the big guys in there.  How are his hands?  Do we see a fake and pass off of this in the future to Troy?




Kenneth Murray had himself a game Saturday.  All the film study is really showing in his performance.  To an offensive lineman, the delay blitz, especially up the middle is deadly.  Everything happens so fast, that if you take your eyes off of the gap you’re responsible for as an o lineman, then defenders get to hammer your guys.  Kenneth, reads to make sure the back doesn’t get the ball on the fake, and then it’s all over but the cryin.




On Hollywood’s long TD, this appears to be an option route.  At least he sold it really well, as the the defender was completely turned around.  I think Hollywood had the “option” to sit down on a hook like he did, or go deep here.  Both he and Kyler made the right read, and hit the speedster for a nice pass.  Then with that speed, it’s good night Irene.




Another guy who had a whale of a game was Kyler Murray.  He accounted for 5 td’s!  3 passing and two on the ground.  This one here is flawless.  That counter is so deadly, that the d lineman for UCLA gets in Bobby’s hip pocket on the pull.  Then Kyler is just reading that defender with the blue arrow.  If he sits, he gives it to Trey, who has a lead blocker and the edge.  This is most likely a TD that way too.  Kyler makes the correct read here, smokes the safety and scores.




This is a spy technique by Curtis Bolton.  His step to the right is proof that the Sooners are focused on the details.  As the Sooners have numbers left, he steps to his right, trusting his teammates to do their job over there.  His job is to sit there in case the pressure gets to the QB.  He knows since the rush is coming from the QB’s right, or his left, that if the QB escapes, most likely it will be to his right.  It turned out that way and was a huge, drive killing point saving sack on 3rd down.




Everybody needs to ease up on Kyler.  He’s a DUDE and a hell of a player.  What I’ve noticed is that the ball sails on him when his feet aren’t set.  Naturally as a right hander, it’s easier for him to set up and throw to his right.  On those swing passes to his left, his arm is coming across his body.  If his feet aren’t set, it’ll be a bit off.  Again, this is cerebral and something he can clean up.  Once he does clean it up, could this offense get any more lethal?




Here, Kyler gets his feet set to his left, and throws a laser to Calcaterra.  K and I were talking about this after the game and I was saying then and still believe that it’s just a footwork thing for Kyler.  Not an ability thing.  With a great QB coach like Riley with him every day I suspect we’ll see Kyler progress a great deal this year.  Just like in baseball at the short stop or 3rd base spot, if you don’t get your feet set and shuffle, it’s really tough to make that throw across the diamond.




Watching this at the stadium it appeared that Creed didn’t cut off his man.  But watching the film, veteran Bobby Evans just had a mental bust.  Sooners are in double tight, and you can see the linebacker coming.  That’s Creed’s man, because there isn’t an A gap over him.  Bobby knows that Powers is pulling, so he has to step down and cut off the three technique between him and Ben.




Here’s a better look at it.  The true freshman Humphrey…A.K.A the Shawnee Sasquatch, does a great job picking up the blitz.  If Bobby steps down on that D Tackle there and at least pushes him into the traffic Jam between him and Creed this play goes.




You can see that Sermon has to take a counter step to his left to give Ben time to get around.  Carson is going to get up on the LB, and Powers blocks first man who shows.  This would have put Trey one on one with the safety, and I love Oklahoma’s chances there.  Bobby, as a veteran has to do a better job cerebrally here, and I expect Bedenbaugh is all over this.  In closing, let’s face it.  Oklahoma curb stomped a really talented UCLA squad.  They score 70 against em if there aren’t a couple of penalties and some stuff fundamentally corrected.  I guarantee you that the Sooners are gonna come out with their hair on fire in Ames on Saturday.  This squad has something to prove.  Boomer!