The Sooners are travelling up to Manhattan, Kansas this weekend to take on the Kansas State Wildcats, in hopes to regain a little momentum after the disappointing loss to Texas Tech last Saturday night.
Kansas State Head Coach, Bill Snyder with the Wildcat mascot
Kansas State comes into the game unbeaten and ranked No. 11 in the current BCS standings. Oklahoma has not had 2 losses in a row during the regular Big XII season play for 13 years, so the stakes are high for both teams.
If the Wildcats win, it will be the first time since the notorious 2003 championship game; where even though Oklahoma lost, they still got to play for the National Championship.
Head Wildcat coach, Bill Snyder is fully aware of the magnitude of the game, and knows his players are, too:
They all understand the significance of the ballgame and the tremendous team that we are playing, but how you prepare does not or should not really change.
Even though Kansas State is undefeated, the Wildcats offense is still one of the lowest-rated in the Big XII, averaging 354 yards per game and more than half of that has been rushing yards. Their quarterback, Collin Klein, is the top rusher on the team with 670 yards so far. His 14 rushing touchdowns lead the Big XII, and is at 59 percent passing with 8 touchdowns and 3 interceptions. Last week against Kansas he had 4 touchdowns for 92 yards and only throwing for 195 yards and was 12 of 19. Needless to say, Klein is their offensive threat. Contain Klein, control the game.
Bob Stoops was vocal about what his team needed to do in his press conference earlier this week:
Kansas State will beat the living heck out of us if we don’t make improvement, along with anyone else we’re going to play. If this doesn’t show you that, then you’re pretty unrealistic.
But if we can show some character and make some improvements from this (loss), who knows what can happen?
Sooner quarterback, Landry Jones is facing one of the best defenses in the conference Saturday and comes in with a 64 percent completion rate and 2589 yards with 21 touchdowns. Though the Kansas State defense has given up 671 yards in the last two games, and Oklahoma is one of the more complete offenses they have faced so far this season.
As usual, Coach Stoops has been tight-lipped on who will be returning this week from the injury list. Though it has been said that Tom Wort has been practicing and Jamell Fleming will probably be a go Saturday. The return of Wort will really help the defense given that the Wildcats run the ball quite frequently. We saw how much both are an impact last Saturday, especially with the play of the CB’s without Fleming. RB Dom Whaley should return after suffering from the flu in the last game, which sidelined him. That will definitely add a boost back to the ground game.
The Sooners have to get the focus back in their play and whatever issues are going on, need to be contained. The team had a players only meeting Monday, so let’s see what changes are made Saturday.
We’ve just got to learn from it. Learn from a loss and move on and if we don’t get better from it, then we’ll repeat this process again and we’ll lose to another team. If we learn from it, move on and start playing better football, we’ll be all right. -Landry Jones
The game is set to kickoff at 2:30 CST on ABC.