Oklahoma won just its second true road game of the year. They went to Iowa State and won 27-13 behind a solid day from their defense and some timely plays from their offense and special teams. After being dismantled by TCU on the road a few weeks ago, Oklahoma needed to erase the stench of that road defeat from their minds and they did that.
Outside of Eric Gray’s 20 carries for 101 yards and a touchdown, Oklahoma didn’t have a 100-yard receiver, and Dillon Gabriel failed to throw for more than 200 yards but the offense made plays when they had to. They didn’t have to do much in this one as the defense carried the day. The Sooners stymied Iowa State’s ground game for just 66 yards.
The win sets Oklahoma’s record at 5-3, putting them just one win away from securing bowl eligibility. As the Sooners now turn their focus to Baylor, here’s our weekly stock report, where we see who’s trending up and who’s trending down.
Stock Up: Defense starting to show signs of life
AMES, IA – OCTOBER 29: linebacker DaShaun White #23, and defensive lineman Gracen Halton #56 of the Oklahoma Sooners tackle running back Cartevious Norton #5 of the Iowa State Cyclones as he rushed for yards in the second half of play at Jack Trice Stadium on October 29, 2022 in Ames, Iowa. The Oklahoma Sooners won 27-13 over the Iowa State Cyclones. (Photo by David Purdy/Getty Images)
Oklahoma’s defense was much maligned for the last few games and hit rock bottom after being dismantled by their Red River counterparts in the Texas Longhorns. They gave up some plays to the Kansas Jayhawks, but better pressure from the front seven and some timely turnovers gave the Sooners something to build on.
On Saturday against the Cyclones, they continued to build with three interceptions and they held Iowa State to 374 total yards. They’ll look to build on that when they host the Baylor Bears next week.
Stock Down: Marvin Mims
Oct 29, 2022; Ames, Iowa, USA; Iowa State Cyclones defensive back T.J. Tampa (2) knocks out the ball from from Oklahoma Sooners wide receiver Marvin Mims Jr. (17) during the third quarter in the Big 12 Conference game at Jack Trice Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Nirmalendu Majumdar/Ames Tribune-USA TODAY Sports
A rough showing Saturday seems like an anomaly for the Sooners’ star receiver, but Saturday was one of the worst games Mims’ has had since being in the Crimson & Cream. He’ll bounce back, but after nine receptions and 106 yards against Kansas, Mims sees his stock trend downward temporarily.
Stock Up: The Offensive Line
AMES, IA – OCTOBER 29: Running back Eric Gray #0 of the Oklahoma Sooners celebrates with teammate offensive lineman Anton Harrison #71 of the Oklahoma Sooners after scoring a touchdown in the second half of play against the Iowa State Cyclones at Jack Trice Stadium on October 29, 2022 in Ames, Iowa. The Oklahoma Sooners won 27-13 over the Iowa State Cyclones. (Photo by David Purdy/Getty Images)
The offensive line is playing some highly inspired football of late, and Saturday’s game was another good showing. With guys like Anton Harrison and McKade Mettauer leading the offense in PFF grades, it’s clear this team is settling into the scheme and is playing cohesive football in the trenches.
Stock down: 3rd and 4th down efficiency on defense
Oct. 29, 2022; Ames, Iowa, USA; Oklahoma defensive lineman Jonah Laulu (8) tackles Iowa State running back Jirehl Brock in the fourth quarter at Jack Trice Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bryon Houlgrave/Des Moines Register-USA TODAY Sports
While the Sooners won, it wasn’t without flaws. Situational football is what makes good teams great and keeps bad teams bad. If forcing negative plays puts you in situations to get off the field on third down, you have to capitalize and get off the field.
Oklahoma struggled with coverage and pressure on third and fourth downs. While it didn’t result in a loss, it’s something they need to improve upon as a defense.
Stock Up: Special teams is really special
AMES, IA – OCTOBER 29: Place kicker Zach Schmit #34 of the Oklahoma Sooners faked a field goal kick and drove the ball into the end zone for a touchdown defensive back Beau Freyler #17 of the Iowa State Cyclones blocks as defensive back Anthony Johnson Jr. #1 of the Iowa State Cyclones watches on in the first half of play at Jack Trice Stadium on October 29, 2022 in Ames, Iowa. (Photo by David Purdy/Getty Images)
Oklahoma may have one of the nation’s best combination of kicker and punter in the country. At one point in the game, Zach Schmit was outscoring Iowa State himself with a touchdown reception, extra point, and two field goals.
Michael Turk boomed two 61-yard punts to flip field position and on one punt, pinned the Cyclones on their own one-yard line.
These guys are weapons.
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