Sooners welcome 25,598 fans to Owen Field for annual Red/White Spring Game.
NORMAN, Okla. --
The Red team will be eating a steak dinner this week after posting a 20-14 win over the White in Oklahoma's annual Red/White spring game. Members of the losing team will spend that same meal dining on hot dogs.
Drew Allen quarterbacked the winning team, completing 16-of-29 passes for 179 yards and one touchdown and one interception.
The White drew first blood on a 40-yard field goal by Michael Hunnicutt with 7:30 remaining in the first period. The Red answered with a 16-yard pass from Allen to Dejuan Miller. Miller, coming back off a knee injury, hauled in six passes for 62 yards.
The Red upped the lead to 14-3 with 1:04 left in the first when Brennan Clay ripped off an 11-yard run.
Hunnicutt opened the second quarter scoring when he added a 36-yard field goal, but the Red answered before the half with a 28-yard field goal from Jimmy Stevens.
Neither team scored again until the fourth quarter when the White got a 17-yard pass play from Blake Bell to Trey Franks. The team added a two-point conversion to cut the margin to 17-14, but Jimmy Stevens tacked on a 25-yarder for the Red with 3:24 left to end the scoring.
Bell, who took snaps with both teams, finished the game 11-of-24 for 76 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Franks caught seven passes for 54 yards.
The top rusher in the game was Derrick Whaley, who topped the White team with 10 attempts for 65 yards. The Red team leader was Clay with 12 rushes for 59 yards.
The game's leading tackler was White team defensive back Aaron Colvin with eight. He also had an interception. The Red team was led in tackles by Sam Proctor and Jaydan Bird with five each.
Sooner All-America wide receiver Ryan Broyles saw his only action fielding punts. Quarterback Landry Jones played only the early portion of the game. He was 6-of-11 for 40 yards with one interception.
A crowd of 25,598 saw the game. The Sooners will conclude their spring practices with a final workout on Tuesday.
|| Head Coach Bob Stoops
"I was pleased overall, just with the way that the day went mostly. There were no significant injuries, just a few ankle sprains and something here or there-- nothing serious. A few too many foolish defensive penalties, but other than that I thought it was pretty good."
"You have got a lot of guys out there to evaluate. The hard part for me I guess is you're watching guys that are getting closer to being ready to play and some guys have shown with significant improvement that they're ready to play. Other guys aren't ready to play and it shows up out there. So you're watching so many players playing at once as opposed to just 11 of your guys at one time when you get back in the fall in the games."
"Again I think the improvement in our offensive line overall ... has been very noticeable. Our ability and just being sounder in running the football is something I've seen through the entire spring. In particular, I guess in the last half of spring, it's really improved. I'm pleased with the backs, the way we're running the line, the way we're blocking people and their technique in what they're doing. And the young quarterbacks are getting better. Drew (Allen), I thought, was impressive for sure in that first half and did a lot of really nice things, and Blake as well. A lot of good things, but he needs more time and he'll learn a lot from watching this scrimmage as well. Landry's been solid all spring. We really didn't need to see him all that much."
On position changes:
"Lane Johnson at tackle. It's going to work out wonderfully for him, and for us. Actually he's going to end up being a really special player there whether left or right. Again, defensively, we've been solid. I thought just overall some position changes are good for us. Joe Powell over there at defensive back is going to be good. Corey Nelson's had a tremendous spring. All the guys up front have come on and made improvements and then same thing for the secondary.
"Aaron Colvin is going to be a great safety, he runs around out there and really plays well. Gabe Lynn's really come on through the spring to go with these other guys, Javon Harris has been very steady all spring at those positions. Tress Way at kicker, again I said that - maybe a week ago - that have really made marked improvement in my eyes. Michael Hunnicutt is really come on with Jimmy (Stevens) and then Tress is really hitting the ball well also."
On the running backs:
"They're good. That said a lot without Demarco (Murray) in there that was so versatile. All these guys do a lot well-- Dominique Whaley, along with the rest of them, you know. I don't really believe that any of them are guys that are 40-snap-a-game guys, so we'll see. But we're pleased at how they are all playing. Brennan (Clay) was very good. I thought he found space, made some big runs, had great cuts, and takes care of the ball."
On Blake Bell's progress at quarterback:
He continues to make improvement and he's such a young guy with so much in front of him and he'll continue that. He's worked hard technique wise and he's a big guy and just getting his footwork, getting his delivery. He's got a big arm and continuing to refine his techniques. Coach Heupel does a great job teaching him- he's making steady progress.
On whether interior defensive line has improved:
"They have. They've done well and continue to. They still have work to do but they're progressing well."
On playing the safety position:
|| Sophomore DB Aaron Colvin
"It's becoming more natural to me everyday. Coaches are helping me learn the position more and more and it's becoming a better fit for me."
On not playing a lot last season:
"I've always felt like I could play, no matter what the situation was. We had two really good corners in front of me so I was just trying to be patient and wait my turn, and every chance I got, I tried to showcase what I could do. Right now they're giving me an opportunity to showcase what I can do at safety, so that's what I'm trying to do."
On the transition from corner to safety:
"The hard thing for me, honestly, is reading run and pass. At corner, you're always focused in on just pass, shutting down your receiver. Right now I'm just trying to get better at being able to read the guard and the center, read their keys better, so I can come down and be in the run game a little faster."
On how good the secondary can be:
"I feel like we can be great. We can be one of the best secondaries in the country, but right now we still have a lot of improvement, a lot of things to work on. So I can't talk about the positives right now because we still have some negatives to correct."
On the linebacker corps:
|| Senior LB Travis Lewis
"I think as a group, we've all gotten better. People like Corey Nelson and Jacob Byrd, and I saw today Tom Wort, this is definitely a strength of this team. I'm proud of all my guys and the way they've progressed this spring."
On how good the defense is going to be this year:
"Hopefully amazing, great, awesome. Everything in between. Every time I answer this question, the sky's the limit for this team. If we keep making strides in the right direction, keep pushing each other, at the end of the day we're going to be a great defense."
On his progression thru the spring:
"It's been up and down. Some days I make strides; some days I take steps back. I need to get more consistent with my play. As far as little things, I think I'm getting better at them."
Allen's opinion on the teams play:
|| Sophomore QB Drew Allen
"I was not really going for one team. I feel like the running backs did really well and so did the receiving core-I really appreciate their effort, Allen said. "I was able to get into a groove in the first half. It comes experience and a comfort ability of knowing how the offense works."
Confidence from playing well in front of 25,000 people:
"Coach Heupel talked about how this is the closest we are going to get to a game like situation. It does bring a lot of confidence to myself and to the whole team that I was able to hold my own today, Allen said. "Coach Heupel has really worked with me this spring, and he has given me a lot more confidence. I think I will be ready to step up if I need to play some next year. I have been working on the little things and I feel more prepared to take my role as back-up."
On his touchdown pass to Dejuan Miller:
"I really enjoyed throwing that, and I enjoyed throwing him the ball, Allen said. "I appreciate his effort today on both sides. He played for both the red and the white, because of injuries at the wide receiver position but that really helped out our offense. That was a good call by Coach Heupel."
Playing on both teams during the game:
|| Senior WR Dejuan Miller
"It was hectic to say the least, but I enjoyed it because I got a lot of reps in and I was able to get a lot of work done. It was tiring, but I still played well at the same time."
Filling in for Broyles and Stills:
"I feel like I need to step up and be that guy when they do not play that much, or if they go down. I know Ryan and Kenny are more than capable to make those big plays during the season when we need them, Miller said. "As far as stepping up in this game it was on my mind, because this is my last spring game. Being out for five months is hard, but I was able to show the fans and myself that I am still here. It gave me that confidence builder."
How Miller would grade himself:
"As far as grade, I would probably give myself a B plus. I would not give myself an A at this point, because I still feel like I am working on some things and fine tuning, Miller said. I really have not been in action for more than three weeks now, so there is still more work to be done."
Miller's opinion on being number one:
"We can improve a lot. ESPN and CBS sports can say what they want, but I am with the team all the time and I do not think we are number one yet," Miller said. "The hype is good, but we still need to go out there and prove ourselves."
|| Game Stats
Bell: 11-24/67 yards, 1 INT, 1 TD (17 yards to Franks)
Jones: 6-11/40, 1 INT
Allen: 16-29/179 yards, 1 INT, 1 TD (16 yards to Miller)
Franks: 7/54 yards, 1 TD
Miller: 6/62, 1 TD
Whaley: 10/65 yards
Clay: 12/59 yards, 1 TD
Finch: 8/20, 1 fumble
Colvin - 8
Wort - 6
L. Harris - 5
Gastelum - 5
Powell - 4
Lee - 3
Favors - 2
Grissom - 2
McGee - 2
Wilson - 1
Ibiloye - 1
Paulsen - 1
Alexander - 1
McFarland - 1
Proctor - 5
Bird - 5
Jefferson - 4
Nelson - 4
Hayes - 4
Ndulue - 3
Hurst - 2
Lynn - 2
Lewis - 2
King - 2
Walker - 1
Lynn - 1/-5
Walker - 1/-9
Tackles for Loss
McGee - 1/-1
L. Harris - 1/-1
Gastelum - 1/-3
Ndulue - 2/-3 yards
Bird - 1/-1
Lewis - 1/-1
Passes Broken Up
Colvin - 1
Wilson - 1
J. Harris - 1
Alexander - 1
Jefferson - 1
Hurst - 1
Colvin - 1/0
Lynn - 1/7
Hurst - 1/6
Alexander - 1
Hunnicutt - 40, 36
Stevens - 28, 25
O'Hara - (49)
Way - 11/511 yards (49.5 avg.)
K. Miller - 1/35
1st - 7:38 (White) Hunnicutt, Michael 40-yard field goal
11 plays, 50 yards, TOP 4:36, WHITE 3 - RED 0
1st - 5:49 (Red) Miller, Dejuan 16-yard reception from Allen, Drew (Stevens kick good)
9 plays, 70 yards, TOP 1:49, WHITE 3 - RED 7
1st - 1:04 (Red) Clay, Brennan 11-yard rush (Stevens kick good)
4 plays, 27 yards, TOP 1:54, WHITE 3 - RED 14
2nd - 13:11 (White) Hunnicutt, Michael 36-yard field goal
5 plays, 51 yards, TOP 1:49, WHITE 6 - RED 14
2nd - 2:09 (Red) Stevens, Jimmy 28-yard field goal
8 plays, 20 yards, TOP 1:43, WHITE 6 - RED 17
4th - 9:28 (White) Franks, Trey 17-yard reception from Bell, Blake (2-point conversion good)
1 play, 17 yards, TOP 0:08, WHITE 14 - RED 17
4th - 3:24 (Red) Stevens, Jimmy 25-yard field goal
12 plays, 67 yards, TOP 6:04, WHITE 14 - RED 20
Jake Trotter of the Oklahoman
: "The hard-hitting sophomore linebacker from Dallas put together the best spring of any Sooner on the roster. Because he plays behind Travis Lewis at weak-side linebacker, getting Nelson on the field regularly will require some creativity from defensive coordinator Brent Venables. But whether..."
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