Oklahoma State rallies to stun No. 20 Oklahoma in overtime

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This wasn’t the Bedlam game we expected. Not after Oklahoma started the season in the top 10 and Oklahoma State took Florida State to the wire on opening night. But with Cody Thomas and Mason Rudolph leading their respective clubs, not Trevor Knight and J.W. Walsh, and no Big 12 championship implications on the line for the first time in five years, Bedlam lived up its billing.

Oklahoma State scored the game’s final 10 points in to rally for a 38-35 overtime victory over the 20th-ranked Sooners in Norman.

This was an overtime game that had no business going to overtime.

Oklahoma took possession of the ball at the Cowboys’ 41-yard line leading 35-28 with 3:16 remaining in the game. Oklahoma State had no timeouts, so a first down clinched the game. The Sooners lost four yards on the next three snaps, so they were forced to punt. That’s when Jordan Sterns committed the greatest penalty in the history of the Oklahoma State football program. Jed Barnett‘s punt was downed at the 15, but Sterns was flagged for running into the kicker and, for some ill-fated reason, Stoops accepted the penalty.

Tyreek Hill returned the next punt 92 yards for a touchdown to the the game with 45 seconds remaining.

Then, on the Sooners’ last-gasp possession to win the game in regulation, Oklahoma was faced with a 4th-and-1 at its own 46, well within distance for something crazy to happen, but Bob Stoops let the clock expire with a timeout in his pocket.

Oklahoma took the ball to open the extra frame, and it was a complete debacle. The Sooners lost two yards in three plays, and Michael Hunnicutt missed a 44-yard field goal attempt.

The game was fate accompli at that point, as the Cowboys bullied the ball to the three-yard line and Ben Grogan knocked in a 21-yard field goal, his first since October, to give Oklahoma State the win.

The Sooners took a 28-14 lead into the break but, playing without Knight, its offense ground to a halt after Samaje Perine left the game with an ankle injury in the third quarter. He was carrying the Sooners’ offense to that point, rushing 26 times for 151 yards and two touchdowns. Outside of a nine-play, 83-yard touchdown drive, Oklahoma’s offensive output in the second half and overtime resulted in five punts, a fumble, a turnover on downs and a missed field goal.

Thomas completed 10-of-17 passes for 120 yards and a touchdown, but was only 4-of-11 for 34 yards after halftime.

Meanwhile, Thomas’ counterpart was terrific in his Bedlam debut. True freshman Mason Rudolph hit 19-of-35 throws for 273 yards with two touchdowns and an interception. Brandon Sheperd caught seven passes for 156 yards and two touchdowns, Desmond Roland rushed 18 times for 68 yards and two touchdowns, and Hill added three rushes for 38 yards and six receptions for 22 yards to his punt return score.

After taking a 28-14 deficit into the third quarter, the Cowboys outscored Oklahoma 24-7 over the final 15 minutes plus overtime.

The win extends Oklahoma State’s season, as the six-win Pokes are now eligible for their ninth straight bowl game. They entered Saturday losers of five straight by three touchdowns or more for the first time in half a century. The win was Mike Gundy‘s second Bedlam victory in his 10 seasons as head coach, and Oklahoma State’s first win in Norman since 2001.

The loss drops Oklahoma to 8-4 on the year, concluding the most unsatisfying season in recent Oklahoma memory, and certainly in Stoops’ 16-year tenure. The Sooners beat Texas but were outplayed and out-fought for most of the game, lost to all three ranked teams they faced, and gagged away a sure Bedlam win in historic fashion.

And as for College Football Playoff implications? This result will have no impact on the TCU-Baylor debate as both clubs played each team, but it could set the third-ranked Frogs and sixth-ranked Bears back relative to No. 5 Ohio State in the eyes of the committee. Each team now has one more win over a bowl team, yes, but Oklahoma will now assuredly drop out of the Top 25. TCU will now have one Top 25 victory (No. 9 Kansas State), while Baylor will now have two, assuming it beats Kansas State tonight. Ohio State, meanwhile, will have two with a win over No. 13 Wisconsin tonight.

Following pregame speeches from President Trump, Navy leads Army at halftime

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For the second consecutive year, President Donald Trump is taking in the annual Army-Navy Game in person in Philadelphia. And, as is typically the case in this storied rivalry, it’s been a tight contest after 30 minutes of play in Lincoln Financial Field with Navy leading Army 14-7 at halftime.

Army quarterback Christian Anderson became the first quarterback to make his first career start for Army in the Army-Navy Game since T.D. Baker did so in 1979. It sure didn’t take long for the freshman to have an impact. After going three-and-out to open the game, Anderson rattled off a 21-yard gain on the ground on the first play of Army’s second possession. 17 plays later (yes, 17 plays later), Anderson finished off the drive with a five-yard run to the right edge of the field for a touchdown, the first score of the game.

Malcolm Perry provided a jolt to the Navy offense on the second offensive series for the Midshipmen, although in much quicker fashion compared to the lengthy Army drive. Perry took off to the right side and juked a defender en route to a 55-yard touchdown that tied the game up early in the second quarter. The 55-yard touchdown run also moved Perry into first place in the Navy record books for most single-season total offensive yards. He later became Navy’s all-time single-season rushing leader as he continued to rewrite the record books in Annapolis.

Perry provided another juke move in a very similar play on a 44-yard run late in the first half. That run setup the go-ahead score. Naturally, a play similar to the Philly Special run by the Philadelphia Eagles in the Super Bowl two seasons ago, Navy took the lead with a fake play that saw receiver Chance Warren complete a pass to fullback Jamale Carothers. It wasn’t exactly a Philly Special, but this gam,e being played in the home of the Philadelphia Eagles, it felt appropriate.

President Trump took a few minutes to address each team in the locker room prior to walking on the field for the national anthem and coin flip. A video message from Trump was also played in the stadium during the pregame routine.

Army has won each of the last three meetings and is looking for a long-awaited four-game winning streak.

Florida State RB Cam Akers declares for NFL draft, will skip bowl game

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One of college football’s most talented running backs is moving on to the NFL. Florida State running back Cam Akers has declared for the NFL draft. As most players do, Akers announced his decision with a statement released on his Twitter account on Saturday afternoon.

“I have decided to enter the 2020 NFL Draft and will not play in the Sun Bowl, ” Akers confirmed, ruling himself out of the bowl game for the Seminoles coming up. “Even though I won’t be playing in the bowl game I will be at practice and in El Paso supporting my teammates.”

Akers rushed for 1,144 yards and 14 touchdowns for Florida State this season, both more than good enough to lead the team. It was the second time Akers rushed for over 1,000 yards for the Seminoles, having done so in 2017 while rushing for 706 yards in 2018. Akers also caught 30 passes for 228 yards and four touchdowns this season.

Florida State will face Arizona State in the Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl on Dec. 31.

Georgia RB James Cook arrested on pair of misdemeanor charges

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If Ye Olde Arrest Tracker were still around, it’d be time to set the ticker back to double zeroes.

The latest FBS program with an off-field issue with which to deal is Georgia, with multiple media outlets reporting that running back James Cook was arrested early Saturday morning following a traffic stop in Athens.  According to the Athens Banner-Herald, Cook, the brother of former Florida State star Dalvin Cook, was charged with driving without a valid license and possession of an open container of alcohol in a passenger area.

Both of those charges are misdemeanors.

At this point, the football program has not publicly commented on the development.  It’s unclear if the incident will impact Cook’s availability for the Sugar Bowl vs. Baylor on New Year’s Day.

Cook was a four-star member of UGA’s 2018 recruiting class, rated as the No. 3 all-purpose back in the country; the No. 8 player at any position in the state of Florida; and the No. 41 player overall on 247Sports.com‘s composite board.  He has rushed for 460 yards and four touchdowns in two seasons, including 176 and two in 2019.

New USF head coach Jeff Scott lands second Power Five transfer RB

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It’s been quite the productive first few days on the Power Five personnel front for Jeff Scott.

Monday, it was confirmed that the Clemson co-offensive coordinator had been named as the next head football coach at South Florida.  Two days later, former South Carolina running back Lavonte Valentine announced that he would be continuing his collegiate playing career at USF.

Friday, yet another running back decided to transfer into Scott’s program, with Darrian Felix announcing via Twitter that he will transfer to USF and continue his collegiate p[laying career with the Bulls.  Felix, who decided to transfer from Oregon following the Pac-12 championship game, will be eligible to play immediately for the AAC school in 2020.

A three-star member of the Ducks’ 2017 recruiting class, Felix ran for 426 yards and three touchdowns on 78 carries during his three years in Eugene.  This past season, the redshirt sophomore totaled 197 yards and a pair of touchdowns on his 34 carries.