Oct 13, 2001
By DOUG TUCKER
AP Sports Writer
LAWRENCE, Kan. - Trent Smith felt unusually happy for a guy who dropped a touchdown pass.
The 6-foot-5 tight end, taking advantage of size mismatches, buried his mistake with four touchdown catches and 11 receptions Saturday night - both school records - in No. 3 Oklahoma's 38-10 victory over Kansas.
Backup quarterback Jason White tossed TD passes of 2, 12, 9 and 8 yards to Smith, who totaled 70 yards on his 11 receptions as the defending national champions (6-0, 3-0 Big 12) won their 19th in a row.
In the first quarter as the Sooners struggled to get their offense untracked, Smith had a sure TD pass go through his hands.
"With the group of receivers we have, I feel lucky to have this kind of game," Smith said. "After dropping that first one, I wouldn't let that happen again. This is the kind of game I'd like to have every week."
White, who replaced starter Nate Hybl for the second week in a row, also lost the ball on successive plays on a fumble and an interception in the third quarter.
But against the quicker Oklahoma defense, Kansas (2-3, 1-2 Big 12) could barely move. Before Mario Kinsey hooked up with Roger Ross on a 77-yard touchdown play with 4:58 left, the Jayhawks had managed just 9 yards in the second half.
"What I saw out there tonight was the best defensive football team we've seen here," Kansas coach Terry Allen said.
Kinsey, unable to find an open receiver play after play, wound up rushing 19 times for 37 yards. He was spelled several times by Zach Dyer, who was just 1-of-6.
"It seemed like they had 15 or 16 guys out there on defense," Dyer said. "They have a great scheme and they have great athletes. They're really quick."
The Sooners took a 24-3 lead in the third on Smith's 9-yard touchdown catch.
White, 16-of-23 in Oklahoma's 14-3 victory over Texas last week, relieved Hybl on Oklahoma's fourth possession with the Sooners trailing 3-0.
Before the half was over, the sophomore quarterback had thrown two touchdown passes to Trent Smith and the Sooners led 17-3 en route to their 26th victory in 31 games under Bob Stoops.
Hybl, who went out in the second quarter with an apparent shoulder injury the week before, was just 5-of-11 for 15 yards when White stepped in. Stoops, bristling at the suggestion of a quarterback controversy, said Hybl had not been re-injured and that both players would be evaluated next week.
"There's never a battle that's over on this team," Stoops said. "Some people designate a guy and it doesn't matter what he does, he's going to be their guy forever. But on our team, every position continues to work every week. I just thought (Hybl) wasn't as sharp as we feel he's capable of. Therefore, we went with Jason and for the most part were successful."
The Jayhawks, who hadn't had a turnover in two games, lost three consecutive fumbles in the first half on their own 36, 24 and 11. Out of that, the Sooners got Tim Duncan's 38-yard field goal, a fumble on fourth down and a blocked field goal.
But on their next possession, White got the offense moving when he lifted a 2-yard TD pass to Smith, who had appeared to drop a touchdown pass in the first period.
White's 12-yarder to Smith made it 17-3 at halftime, then Smith tied the school record with his 9-yard TD catch.
Two turnovers by White gave Kansas the ball deep in its own territory in the third period.
But following Andrew Davison's interception of White's pass on the 14, the Jayhawks punted on third and 13.
A moment later, White fumbled and Kansas' Charlie Dennis recovered on the 4. But three plays later, the Jayhawks punted on fourth and nine.
Renaldo Works scored Oklahoma's last touchdown on a 9-yard run, making it 38-3.
White was 18-of-29 for 151 yards. Johnny Beck hit a 37-yard field goal for Kansas in the first quarter.