Venables: OU defense 'played like crap'

By Royce Young Oklahoma Daily

November 12, 2007

Norman, OK (CSTV U-WIRE) -- The scoreboard said it. The stat sheets showed it. But it was still hard to believe.

Baylor had put up 182 yards of offense against OU in the first quarter of Saturday night's game.

And what looked to maybe be merely an early game aberration, wasn't. The Bears continued to pile up yardage against the ninth-ranked defense in the country.

"No excuses. Bottom line, you coached like crap and played like crap. Just sloppy play," said defensive coordinator Brent Venables.

After one half, Baylor had 307 yards, more than five other teams had all game against the Sooners this season. The Bears finished with 450 yards, with 220 of it coming on four plays of more than 40 yards. Those four plays accounted for 49 percent of the Bears total offensive output.

"Defensively it was obvious. We had some breakdowns," said OU head coach Bob Stoops. "We're not used to giving up that kind of yards. I'm awful glad I don't have to see that every week. That hasn't been us. We'll see some things we can get better at."

Baylor running back Brandon Whitaker, an Edmond Santa Fe product, had ripped off runs of 57 and 46 and finished the game with 149 yards. Total, the Sooners gave up 170 yards rushing, the most they've surrendered all season. Last year, OU held the Bears to minus 48 yards rushing.

Subtracting Whitaker's two long runs, Baylor had only 67 yards rushing, which is equal to its season average. Coming into Saturday, the Bears had rushed for 100 yards once in 10 games.

The 450 yards allowed by OU is the most all season, with the previous high being against Missouri , which had 418 total yards.

But amidst a night of negatives, there were some positives. The defense played better in the second half, allowing 143 yards and only 7 points. And the defense also held Baylor 0 for 2 in the red zone, forcing two crucial turnovers.

"In the red zone we did step up and make some plays when we needed to," Smith said. "That's 14 points they would have had if that wouldn't have happened."

Venables said the Bears made it difficult because they weren't showing many offensive sets that the Sooners had prepared for.

"I thought they came in with a really good plan and - to some of our players' defense - they did a lot of things they hadn't seen on tape," Venables said. "Defenses changes [by] reaction, and when they're doing a variety of things it just takes some time, and it seemed like every time you'd make an adjustment they'd do something different the next series."

While the Bears were supposed to have provided OU with an offensive preview of next week's opponent, Texas Tech, Venables said that wasn't the case.

"As similar as they were going into the game, they were that much radically different after the game," Venables said. "That wasn't Texas Tech's offense. There's a few concepts route wise, but they're much different offenses. We're going to see the spread again this week. We've got to get a lot better."

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