CeeDee Lamb

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No. 5 Oklahoma rallies but falls short on the road at Kansas State

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There is one less undefeated team in FBS college football after No. 5 Oklahoma (7-1, 4-1 Big 12) saw a fourth-quarter rally against Kansas State (5-2, 2-2 Big 12) come up just short. An onside kick after cutting Kansas State’s lead to 48-41 was illegally touched by an Oklahoma player, and the Wildcats were able to go into a victory formation to close out the Sooners.

Kansas State held a 48-23 lead on the Sooners early in the fourth quarter after James Gilbert finished off a 10-play drive with a short touchdown run. But as so many teams trying to pull off a major upset have seen before, closing the door is often a difficult task, especially against a team with the potential to score at any moment like Oklahoma. Jalen Hurts (19/26, 395 yards, 1 TD, 96 rushing yards, 3 rushing TD) completed a pass to CeeDee Lamb on the first play from scrimmage after the Kansas State touchdown, and Lamb finished off a quick 70-play touchdown strike to keep hope alive. Oklahoma forced Kansas State to punt on their next two possessions, with a 90-yard touchdown drive in between.

Kansas State quarterback Skyler Thompson had a big day in a game that was supposed to star Hurts. Thompson passed for 213 yards and rushed for four touchdowns to help the Wildcats score their first win against a top 5 team since 2006.

So, what does this all mean for the Sooners? A season with a chance to defend their Big 12 title is still in the mix, and a spot in the College Football Playoff is certainly a bit more difficult to reach but not at all out of the question. Oklahoma still must respond to this loss with authority and take care of their schedule the rest of the way. A 1-loss Big 12 champion would still have a shot to gain a playoff spot. What is unknown is just how much additional help Oklahoma would potentially need. But that’s something to worry about later on if the Sooners remain in play.

The good news for Oklahoma, is there is such a thing, is this loss is not the kind of ugly loss that dooms them without question. Kansas State is on its way to a likely winning season, and the Sooners did claw back with a big game in the box score by their top Heisman Trophy candidate.

Oklahoma will get an extra week to stew over this one, as their next game will be played in two weeks at home against No. 23 Iowa State. Kansas State will look to follow-up this win with one next week on the road at Kansas. A win against the Jayhawks would make Kansas State bowl-eligible.

No. 6 Oklahoma gets big games from Jalen Hurts, CeeDee Lamb in rout of Texas Tech

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It was just another day at the office for Jalen Hurts and No. 6 Oklahoma (4-0, 1-0 big 12). The Sooners won their conference opener against Texas Tech (2-2, 0-1 Big 12) the way that has come to be expected, with big numbers on offense. Hurts passed for 415 yards and three touchdowns and CeeDee Lamb was responsible for 185 receiving yards and all three of the touchdowns thrown by Hurts.

If there is a better quarterback-receiver combo in the country, they may be playing in the NFL. Hurts and Lamb were essentially unflappable against a Texas Tech team that had their defensive unit abused from start to finish. Poor tackling led to big plays, and Lamb getting space to hit fifth gear was lethal for the Red Raiders as well.

Hurts has now thrown for 1,295 yards this season with 12 touchdown passes. After just four games in an Oklahoma uniform, Hurts is easily on pace to have a career season. His career-high for season passing yards is 2,780 yards at Alabama in 2016, which is also when he threw career-high 23 touchdowns for the Crimson Tide. Hurts may pass that touchdown total in the next 3-4 games, and the season-high passing mark could be passed by the end of October too.

Oklahoma’s offense put up 644 yards in the game, more than doubling the offensive output by the Red Raiders. Texas Tech clearly has a different offensive approach under new head coach Matt Wells. The Red Raiders rushed for 192 yards in an attempt to have the clock work in their favor, but Oklahoma’s offense was too explosive to allow for that gameplan to work out in Texas Tech’s favor.

The win moves Oklahoma into the 900-win club in college football. Nebraska joined the elite club last week, and Notre Dame can rejoin the club this afternoon with a win over Virginia. The Sooners are the second Big 12 school with 900 all-time wins. Texas (911 all-time wins) got there first.

Oklahoma will look to go 2-0 in Big 12 play next week when they head to Kansas. Texas Tech will look to regroup next week at home against Oklahoma State.

Jalen Hurts, CeeDee Lamb connecting to give No. 6 Oklahoma big lead on Texas Tech

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Another week has led to another big day for Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts in the box score. It helps when he has talented wide receivers capable of making big things happen. The Sooners have used their big strike passing game to build a 34-10 lead on Texas Tech after one half of play in Norman.

Hurts has completed 12 of 16 pass attempts for 308 yards and two touchdowns, and he has added a rushing touchdown for good measure. CeeDee Lamb had a 71-yard touchdown reception for one of his two scores and Charleston Rambo went for 74 yards and has 122 receiving yards at the halftime break. Oklahoma scored points in each of their first five offensive possessions in the half.

Texas Tech has managed to scratch together a couple of scoring drives, but had to settle for a field goal when one video replay ruled a catch by the Red Raiders was incomplete in the back of the end zone. After falling behind 17-0 in the first quarter, the Red Raiders are trying to climb uphill against a team that refuses to stop scoring.

No. 5 Oklahoma avoids massive upset with overtime win over Army

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If you woke up this morning and thought there was any chance Army (2-2) was going to come away with a win on the road against No. 5 Oklahoma (4-0, 1-0 Big 12), then you are probably the most optimistic of Army football fans there may be. Army did not pull off a major upset of the Sooners, but boy did they come closer than anyone realistically could have imagined.

Oklahoma avoided being upset at home by Army with a 28-21 victory in overtime Saturday night. The game got off to a wild start with the two teams exchanging touchdown drives on the first five possessions of the game, with Oklahoma holding a 21-14 lead by the time the first punt was made by Army in the second quarter.

Army’s valiant effort in the second half to force the game to reach overtime was highlighted by the defensive effort to stand tall in times of need. Army intercepted a pass by Kyler Murray on Oklahoma’s first possession after halftime and capitalized with a 19-play drive covering 85 yards and ending with a short touchdown run by Andy Davidson to draw the game even at 21-21. The defense again made a big play with a fourth down stop on the goal line on Oklahoma’s ensuing possessions. The Sooners had three plays run from the five-yard line and in, but were stuffed on fourth down to give Army a chance.

Army managed to run out away from the shadows of their own end zone but was unable to take its first lead of the ballgame. With one final chance to avoid overtime, Oklahoma missed a 33-yard field goal as time expired in regulation.

Unfortunately for Army, the dream of a colossal upset that would shake up the College Football Playoff picture quickly disintegrated in overtime. Murray completed a touchdown pass to CeeDee Lamb on the second play of overtime to give Oklahoma a touchdown lead, and Army’s Kelvin Hopkins Jr. had a fourth-down pass picked off by Parnell Motley to seal the win for Oklahoma.

Enough cannot be said about the effort shown by Army. It is not often a service academy gets a chance to take a highly ranked team and a playoff contender the distance, but Like the original Rocky movie, Oklahoma had just a little more to score the decision in their favor. Army dominated the time of possession with their offensive style gobbling up nearly three full quarters of the clock with 339 rushing yards and 26 first downs. Oklahoma was just too efficient early on with their offense and Army was unable to get an early stop.

Oklahoma will take a 4-0 record back into Big 12 play for the remainder of their regular season, beginning next week at home against Baylor. The Bears are 3-1 after their Big 12 opener victory against Kansas, snapping a two-game winning streak for the Jayhawks.

Army will be back on the road next week to play Buffalo. The MAC program is 4-0 after their demolishing of Rutgers on the road earlier in the day.

Army may have lost, but this is a game that will not soon be forgotten by Army fans around the country and the world.