Oklahoma Sooners deadlocked with Baylor Bears at halftime

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On paper, it looked like Oklahoma’s most difficult test of the season so far going in. After one half of play, that’s held true. Oklahoma and Baylor ended the first half in Waco deadlocked at 7-7.

The Sooners won the coin toss and elected to take the football first. On the game’s opening series, Oklahoma went backwards. Redshirt junior running back Kennedy Brooks lost four on the first snap and then true freshman quarterback Caleb Williams was sacked for a six-yard loss.

Faced with a 3rd-and-20, OU kept it conservative and handed it back off to Brooks for a gain of one yard.

Baylor looked like it was driving down for the game’s first points on the ensuing drive after the Bears converted a 4th-and-2 snap from the OU 45-yard-line with a five-yard run from senior running back Abram Smith.

But, Baylor head coach Dave Aranda elected to gamble again on 4th-and-goal from the Sooners’ 2-yard-line and Bears junior quarterback Gerry Bohanon’s pass was incomplete intended for Tyquan Thornton.

Deep in its own end of the field, Williams tried to connect with wide receiver Jadon Haselwood into double coverage and the pass was intercepted by Baylor’s Kalon Barnes.

Oklahoma redshirt junior linebacker Brian Asamoah then made one of the key plays of the first half. On a 3rd-and-1 snap from the OU 28-yard-line, Asamoah dropped Bears running back Trestan Ebner for a loss of five.

That set up a Baylor field goal try, which Isaiah Hankins missed from 51 yards out. Oklahoma’s next possession ended with OU kicker Gabe Brkic missing his own 51-yard field goal try.

Senior safety Delarrin Turner-Yell gave the Sooners the momentum right back, intercepting Bohanon and setting Oklahoma up with the football back at their own 22-yard line.

Finally, the Sooners were able to kick their offense into gear. Oklahoma engineered a nine-play scoring drive that covered 78 yards. Junior running back Eric Gray delivered the most important play of the series.

Gray caught a pass from Williams out of the backfield and shook away from Baylor defenders to turn a 3rd-and-7 from the Baylor 17-yard-line into a first-and-goal from the 2.

Williams did the rest from there, keeping it himself on a 2-yard rushing touchdown.

Baylor answered back with a 10-play, 75-yard scoring drive of their own. Facing a 3rd-and-goal, Bohanon connected with Thornton on an eight-yard strike as sophomore defensive back Key Lawrence was beat on the fade route.

At the half, Baylor outgained Oklahoma with 163 yards of total offense to the Sooners’ 131. The Bears did the bulk of their damage on the ground, rushing for 106 yards. Smith carried it 11 times for 60 yards, while Ebner rushed seven times for 20 yards.

Bohanon completed 5-of-12 passes for 57 yards with the one touchdown to Thornton against his pass that was intercepted by Turner-Yell.

For Oklahoma, Williams ended his first half 6-of-12 passing for 65 yards. The Sooners’ leading rusher was Brooks with eight carries for 27 yards.

Baylor gets the football first to start the second half.

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