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Oklahoma Offense Too Much For WVU

NORMAN, Okla. - Oklahoma certainly has the look of a College Football Playoff team. But does it have the defense to reach the big game?
Oklahoma Offense Too Much For WVU

All Pro Photography/Dale Sparks

31

West Virginia WVU 7-5 , 5-4

59

Oklahoma OU 11-1 , 8-1

Score By Quarters
Team 1st 2nd 3rd 4th F
WVU West Virginia 3 7 14 7 31
OU Oklahoma 14 31 14 0 59

Game Recap: Football | | John Antonik

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NORMAN, Okla. - Oklahoma certainly has the look of a College Football Playoff team. But does it have the defense to make it to the big game?

That's a question that will have to be answered on another day.
 
Today, the third-ranked Sooners scored touchdowns on their first six offensive possessions and rolled to a 59-31 victory over West Virginia here at Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium.
 
The Sooners finished the game with 646 total yards, 313 coming on the ground against WVU's undersized defense.
 
"That's a heck of an offensive team," West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen said. "In 25 years of coaching, that's the best offense I've seen. We've played some pretty good defense around here so I don't want to be too down on them, but that's one heck of an offensive team."
 
It wasn't until 12:32 of the fourth quarter that the Mountaineer defense forced Oklahoma to punt. By then, the Sooners were leading 59-24.
 
Senior quarterback Baker Mayfield was suspended for Oklahoma's opening possession because of his sideline antics during last week's win at Kansas, but he returned to the field and completed 14 of his 17 pass attempts for 281 yards and three touchdowns in a little more than two quarters of action to enhance his Heisman Trophy credentials.
 
With or without Mayfield, Oklahoma had little trouble moving the football against WVU.
 
It took OU just two plays to get into the end zone, a place it visited frequently today. On the game's opening play, backup quarterback Kyler Murray took a zone read keeper 66 yards to the WVU 4, where Rodney Anderson scored on the next play.
 
West Virginia (7-5, 5-4) responded with its lengthiest drive of the season, a 13-play, 64-yard march that consumed 7:03 of the first-quarter clock and resulted in a 28-yard Evan Staley field goal.
 
All but two of the 64 yards came on the ground.
 
But at the snap of a finger, Oklahoma (11-1, 8-1) was getting its conversion team organized to get back out on the field for another point-after try. The Mountaineer defense was gouged up the middle by a 58-yard Anderson run to the WVU 17 leading to Mayfield's 8-yard touchdown strike to CeeDee Lamb.
 
OU's first two scores took just 2:36 of possession time.
 
Oklahoma's third touchdown took a little longer (3:02), but was scored by a familiar player - Anderson. A Mayfield 56-yard pass to Marquise Brown gave the Sooners a first down at the Mountaineer 24.
 
Four plays after that, Anderson broke free to his left and ran 13 yards into the end zone to make it 21-3 Oklahoma.
 
WVU answered with a six-play, 75-yard drive that resulted in its lone touchdown of the first half. A Kennedy McKoy 36-yard run out of the Wildcat formation gave the Mountaineers a first down at the OU 39. A reverse pass from Chris Chugunov to Marcus Simms got the ball to the Sooner 4, and four cracks at the middle of the Sooner defense eventually paid off when McKoy powered in from the 1 on fourth down.
 
Then, Holgorsen gambled with a squib kick that Staley nearly pulled off. He recovered his own kick at the Sooner 45 and the football was awarded to West Virginia on the field, but the replay official upstairs ruled that Staley touched the football a half yard short of the required 10 yards it needed to travel.
 
So, Oklahoma got the football at West Virginia's 44 and immediately was back in business when Mayfield hit tight end Mark Andrews for 24 yards to the WVU 20.
 
Two penalties thrown on Oklahoma, one on Erik Wren for holding, and a second on Dru Samia for unsportsmanlike conduct for 15 yards that also disqualified Samia from the game only momentarily delayed OU's scoring march.
 
The Samia walk off moved the ball back to the 20, but it took just two plays for Anderson to skirt the left side of the Mountaineer defense for a 17-yard touchdown run.
 
Austin Seibert's conversion kick made it 28-10.
 
West Virginia's first three-and-out possession of the first half put the Sooners in position to score their fifth first-half touchdown. And it came quickly. Mayfield hit a streaking Lamb across the middle, and he ran to the WVU 3 where he was hauled down from behind by Elijah Battle.
 
A roughing-the-passer penalty on linebacker Xavier Preston added 2 yards to the play, giving Oklahoma a first and goal at the 1. It took Anderson two cracks to score his fourth touchdown and Seibert's conversion made it 35-10.
 
Another Mountaineer three-and-out gave OU plenty of time to add to its lead with the football sitting at the OU 23 with 1:53 remaining in the half.
 
Oklahoma needed just 1:40 of it, Mayfield mixing passes and runs to take the ball to the WVU 14. Here he fired a laser beam to Andrews in the middle of the end zone.
 
Quickly, a 42-10 lead became 45-10 when Gary Jennings Jr. tried to lateral a short pass to Ka'Raun White that Parnell Motley recovered at the WVU 33. Oklahoma ran out its field goal team and Seibert centered up his 51-yard boot to put a wrap on a dominant first half.
 
The Mountaineers began the second half with a seven-play, 75-yard touchdown drive that was aided by two 15-yard Oklahoma penalties. The first, a face mask on Amani Bledsoe, gave WVU a first down at the OU 48.
 
The second came two plays later when Steven Parker interfered on Chugunov's deep pass to Jennings at the goal line, giving WVU a first and 10 at the 15.
 
Here, McKoy found a crease up the middle from the Wildcat formation and ran untouched into the end zone. Justin Crawford also had an 18-yard run during the march.
 
But yet again, Oklahoma's offense had little trouble moving the ball down the field against West Virginia's defense. Mayfield missed on his first two pass attempts and then hit his third to backup tight end Grant Calcaterra for 13 yards and a first down. Mayfield went back to Calcaterra again at the WVU 18 for his third touchdown pass of the game.
 
More Wildcat formation football for the Mountaineers led to McKoy's third rushing touchdown when he backed in from the 3. The big play of the drive was a McKoy 28-yard run to the OU 29 on third and two.
 
Because West Virginia continued to score, that gave Oklahoma the green light to keep its foot on the gas pedal.
 
With Murray back in the game, he led a 71-yard scoring march that took just four plays. Murray's pass to the near sideline was caught by Myles Tease, and he brushed off a WVU tackler and raced 46 yards to cross the goal line.
 
West Virginia punched in another touchdown against the Sooner defense with 6:11 remaining. Most of this came on the ground or via Oklahoma penalties - the Sooners getting flagged three times including a pass interference by Chanse Sylvie on Chugunov's fourth down pass in the end zone to David Sills V, placing the ball at the 2. From there, sophomore Martell Pettaway scored two plays later.
 
"I told them to keep fighting," Holgorsen said. "We won the second half, so I'm proud of them for that."
 
West Virginia had success running the football today, toting it 51 times for 250 yards and four touchdowns, three coming from McKoy who ran for a career-high 137 yards on 25 attempts.
 
Chugunov, starting today in place of injured starter Will Grier, completed 10-of-20 passes for 137 yards. Sills caught three of those for 77 yards.
 
Crawford added 97 yards on the ground to give him 1,060 for the season, making him WVU's first back-to-back, 1,000-yard rusher since Noel Devine did it in 2008-09.
 
Anderson led OU with 118 yards on just 13 carries.
 
Oklahoma moves on to face TCU in the Big 12 Championship Game in Arlington, Texas, while West Virginia awaits its bowl destination and opponent following next weekend's action.
 

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