View video and quotes from Tuesday's press conference previewing the Wildcats.
NORMAN, Okla. --
Head Coach Bob Stoops, offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson, Ryan Broyles and Jonathan Nelson met with the media Tuesday to preview this week's contest against Kansas State.
The Wildcats are 5-3 overall, including 3-1 in conference play and currently lead the Big 12 North standings. Saturday's game kicks off at 6 p.m. (CT) and will be televised by FSN.
For complete coverage throughout the week and broadcast options for following the Sooners around the world, visit Sooner Gameday Central
|| Head Coach Bob Stoops
"Getting back into last week's game, I was incredibly pleased overall with the defense in particular. In the first half they were in some tough situations and continued to respond. We made some huge turnovers, three interceptions in the first half and one for a touchdown. We just really played great throughout the game defensively. In the second half they played well also, I don't think we gave up a touchdown until about eight or nine minutes left in the fourth quarter and we had a pretty good lead at that time. It was a really great day that way."
On the defense against Kansas:
"Brian Jackson was matched with their best receiver most of the day in bump-and-run coverage was outstanding. Dominique Franks, with the interception, played great all day. Adrian Taylor had one of his best games since he's been here. He caused the interception that Jeremy Beal gets off the deflection. He just had great pressure, along with Auston English, Jeremy Beal and Gerald McCoy. All of those guys along with the DBs played great."
On Bill Snyder's influence on his coaching:
"Coach Snyder gave me a break and gave me a full-time job at Kansas State when he came into the program. I've said this before, but it's true, I don't think anyone really has any idea how bad off and how poor shape that program was in. It's talked about, but when you live it you really realize what a horrible situation we came into. Just that experience and Coach Snyder's determination and influence on details and not making excuses but saying 'How are we going to change it?' Just being a part of that process for seven years, it really grows you as a coach and you find out ways of how you can do things differently. I don't know how to quantify how much, but he certainly has made a major influence."
On Landry Jones' performance this season and his progress:
"He has played well. He is making good progress. I think his poise, his confidence and his ability to throw the ball are all positives. I think it's just natural as a young guy, there are times where he can make a better read or needs to go a different place with the ball. Coach Heupel will shape that in him and he gets better and better with it. We're very pleased with where he is and just naturally the more he is on the field he should continue to improve."
On Jones' leadership in the place of Sam Bradford:
"When Sam was healthy he was the boss and Landry was sitting there quiet and paying attention. But, I mean to tell you, as soon as Sam was down in BYU, Landry was on it and it was maybe a little bit surprising how natural it was for him. He didn't blink a bit and the players sensed that. They were right with him right of the bat."
On Brian Jackson:
"Up until last week he had four straight games with an interception and we have played a fair schedule to this point. Then being matched up with the two receivers the last two weeks, being right on top of them, he has been incredible. He really held them down in the checks, neither of them had a big play and caught very few balls. He wasn't on them on every single play but he was on them for the majority of the game and we knew that if we were going to have a good defensive day he had to really show up and play great and he did."
On Ryan Broyles:
"Ryan's really doing a great job in every part of his life. He has become a stronger student-athlete in what we're asking him to do. In his workouts and on the field, he has always been very competitive but now with a little more maturity and age he has even stepped that up. Just naturally he has more confidence and more experience on the field, he has a knack at making big plays because of his talent. He's fast, he's elusive, he has great hands. That catch he made on our boundary the other day was incredible, but that's the kind of hands he has. He is a big play guy. He's a competitive guy. He's an example of how to compete and how to play."
On the running game:
"It's a little bit inconsistent, but we'll keep after it. There was a good part of the game the other night where it was effective in the second half, and some parts in the first half. It's something that we have to continue to work and it's obviously changed some with our tight end and fullback situations. So that makes it a little bit different and more difficult too. But we'll continue to work it and continue to work some of those fullbacks and tight ends in there to try and keep more of it."
On Adrian Taylor:
"I think he has played at a higher level, really all this year, he has really been solid. He has played well all year so maybe people are just now noticing it. But I do think he's playing at a better level than even last year."
On Kansas State's offense:
"They really make you work to understand formations and where they are trying to out-gap you and get an extra man somewhere to create opportunities to run the football. Then if you get too aggressive, they are going to run verticals on you and try to get behind you, so you have to be very disciplined to defend it."
On Drew Allen:
"He gets the usual snaps that a No. 2 guy would get. I haven't counted them up but I feel comfortable with it. He's doing a nice job, he's coming along and getting better and making good improvement. We're happy with what he's doing."
On the distraction of media attention to Sam Bradford:
"I don't think Sam, by any means, has held us back from all the talk. I think everyone overestimates what these kids pay attention to. These guys are up in the morning, going to workouts, going to class all day, have a meeting, have practice, by that time they hustle to dinner and go to study hall. They're not sitting around reading the newspaper and watching ESPN. They're busy. They don't see all of that. They understand Sam's situation, they're with him every day at practice. So there hasn't been anyone slowed by from the uncertainty of what his path is going to be."
On the wide receivers:
"We have to show up consistently and we have been inconsistent. We need to see more consistency and continue to see more competitiveness and better plays. That's what we're after. It's being able to be competitive in the moment as well as being relaxed and doing what you are capable of doing. We're working on it."
On Tress Way place kicking:
"I just don't feel that Jimmy (Stevens) has been consistent as he needs to be. Tress has showed me enough in practice that he is much better than he was a year ago and he's been more consistent. He deserves the opportunity and we will see how he handles it."
On Brandon Banks of Kansas State:
"He's a very explosive, fast and excellent player. He has that quickness and speed to make those big plays. Whether you're covering him on offensive plays or covering him on returns you have to be really great at tackling and getting into positions to make plays and working together with whoever you're working with."
On not paying attention to rankings and other teams' games:
"To me, you have to spend all your energy and focus on what you have to do. What someone else does or doesn't do, in the end it could affect your situation, but you can't do anything about it. So we need to focus on what we can do something about. We understand that we still have five more Big 12 games and a lot can happen and a lot can change. It has in the past, we lost three of the last four Texas games but we have won three of the last four Big 12 Championships. That isn't the end all, it's what you do the whole year to win a Big 12 Championship. A lot can happen, and we've seen it happen in the past. So our job is to do the very best we can to continue to try and put ourselves in a position to pursue it by playing well and getting ourselves prepared."
On the four-receiver sets last week:
|| Sophomore WR Ryan Broyles
“In our four-wide sets, we put our wide receivers in there instead of our tight ends. So I think that helps us stretch the field vertically with a little more speed, utilizing guys that we have at the receiving spot.”
On Brandon Caleb:
“He’s got a good feel of the slot so it definitely helps out both sides getting the slot working as well as the outside. We’re both going in and out so it makes us more versatile. He is a great blocker. He’s got muscle, he’s strong. We use him a little bit to block and help the line out.”
On Landry Jones’ quick release:
“He definitely has a quick release. He reads the defenses and he’ll take every easy shot he can get.”
On facing man coverage:
“That’s what everybody looks forward to. You want to make plays out there, as many chances you can get, one-on-one. It makes the game more competitive going one-on-one with a guy instead of going with more.”
On how team is reacting to Sam Bradford’s season-ending injury:
“We’re just moving forward. Just like the same without him the first game, we got in the second game we got out there and played Tulsa and Idaho State. We’re just ready to click and gel now that we know we have a starter for sure. We can get reps with him in practice and get the feel back.”
On if there is a sense of relief knowing who is playing quarterback from now on:
“We’re just out there to play. It’s bad that Sam [Bradford] has to stop playing this year and get surgery. But we’ve got goals and we’re still going to pursue those no matter who’s out there playing.”
On getting comfortable at the safety position:
|| Junior DB Jonathan Nelson
“The more playing time you have, the more comfortable you get. At the same time you need to make sure you’re not getting too relaxed, that’s when you start messing up. I’m getting more comfortable, but at the same time I need to be on my P’s-and-Q’s like against Texas and Kansas.”
On Kansas State’s offense:
“They don’t sugarcoat things. They don’t try to do a whole lot of motion so they confuse you. They have a bunch of different formations and will try to pound the ball right down your throat. They try to relax the defensive backs and get them into a comfort level where they can go deep on you. You need to make sure you read the plays the way that you need to. If a coach tells you to read the lineman or the fullback, then read the lineman or the fullback. Don’t read the play action that they’re liable to do and don’t let Brandon Banks or any other of their wide receivers go deep on you. You have to be sure you’re really on top of things against Kansas State because they have a really good offense.”
On OU’s defense:
“Our defensive line is getting a lot of pressure on the quarterbacks. A lot of the time the fans don’t fully understand how important the defensive line is to the defensive backs. If you could have a defensive line that has the quarterback on his heels or throwing bad passes, then at times the defensive backs can be out of coverage and the defensive line can save us. We need everyone to go as hard as they can and fit the right schemes. But it’s not just about going as hard as you can, it’s about playing smart. Through watching film we can see that each week we’re making less and less mental errors, which helps a lot when you’re also playing hard.”
On the unity of the offense and defense:
“Our defensive unit feels like we’re one team. If you think of it as the defensive side of OU and the offensive side of OU, then it’s almost like two different teams just meshing into one. We don’t want to think like that. We see it as we’re all one unit and we have to handle our business and hopefully the offense will handle theirs. If that happens then we’ll win the game.”