View complete coverage from Tuesday's press conference previewing the OSU game.
NORMAN, Okla. --
Head coach Bob Stoops held his weekly press conference Tuesday to discuss this week's matchup with Oklahoma State in the annual Bedlam game. Gameday Central
The Sooners and Cowboys square off at 7 p.m. Saturday with Big 12 and BCS national championship hopes on the line. The game will be televised nationally on ABC, and ESPN College GameDay will also broadcast live from Stillwater.
Video complete game week video coverage above. Quotes from Coach Stoops, in addition to sophomore RB Mossis Madu and sophomore DB Dominique Franks are also available below, courtesy of OU Athletics Media Relations.
|| Head Coach Bob Stoops
"As always going over last week's game with Texas Tech, it was just really pleasing to have the atmosphere that we did. I know that I have already thanked the fans, but I wanted to do that again. I thought the atmosphere here for that game was the best that I have been in. It was kind of what you have always hoped and envisioned; 85,646 great and loyal fans doing when they jump in and really affect the game. We really played a complete game and again I want to give Mike Leach and Texas Tech credit for getting into the second to last game of the season and being one of a few teams that were undefeated. They have done an excellent and great job all year and fortunately we came out and played well and had a good game.
"Offensively, to have the balance we did and to be so strong both running and throwing was great. Sam Bradford again was just exceptional, completing 14-of-19 for over 300 yards and four touchdowns is pretty darn efficient. Two of our running backs, DeMarco Murray and Chris Brown, went over 100 yards on the night. DeMarco was once again right around 200 all-purpose yards. He did a great job catching some of those passes out of the backfield. Jermaine Gresham once again had a huge day having right around 100 yards receiving and a touchdown. Brandon Walker was singled out up front for having a great game, although all the guys up there played well. When you rush for 299 yards those guys have to be doing a great job. Again, more than anything, having no turnovers helps out a lot.
"Defensively, Mike Leach and his team have always done a good job moving the ball against teams, but our guys did a great job holding them in check. We came up with the big turnovers again which helped set up some scores. Travis Lewis had two of them with the interception and return down to the one-yard line and then the strip when Keenan Clayton was able to pick it up and return it to the two-yard line. Again, we really did a great job defensively tackling in space, limiting their run game and getting great pressure. The guys given player of the game on defense were really the front four. Jeremy Beal, Frank Alexander are the d-ends that did a great job and then Gerald McCoy, DeMarcus Granger and Adrian Taylor did a great job getting pressure and forcing him to throw when he didn't want to. Travis Lewis and Nic Harris were the other players of the game that just had great games. We were solid special team wise as well. Jimmy Stevens hit a nice field goal and looked good doing it. I thought that part of the game came together and looked really solid as well.
"It was a good win and puts us in a good position to continue to pursue both our conference championship and national championship goals, but we have a huge game and major challenge this week going to Oklahoma State. This is a team that has had a great year. Mike Gundy and his staff have done an excellent job. The team is 9-2 and is ranked pretty high in the polls. Going over there to play, we recognize that is another big challenge, and we have to have a great week of preparation to go in there well prepared and ready to go out there with the same intensity as last week and hopefully leave ourselves in a good position to win."
On the secondary:
"They have been very good. They have tackled really well overall. Those guys have played great. Lendy Holmes has had a number of big plays with interceptions and some big hits as well. Nic (Harris) had a great night the other night covering as well. Dom Franks had a nice night knocking down some balls and the same with Brian Jackson. They have been very solid both covering and playing the run."
On the team's attitude on the road:
"I feel very good about our attitude and the way we have taken the road thus far this season. It has been very businesslike, and the guys have been very focused, concentrated and played well. But we have to do it again Saturday at Oklahoma State."
On Oklahoma State's defense:
"I think they are better overall. Their structure is very disciplined and they are very solid in what they are doing. Overall, if you watch them, their fundamentals and technique up front is very active. They mix in their blitzes, trying to catch you, whether it's during the run or pass game. They try to get some to miss a block and stuff you up front by changing up what they are doing. I just think overall they are much different and are playing really well."
On if DeMarco Murray is the same as he was a year ago:
"I think it's pretty obvious to everyone now. He has hit his stride again in the last couple of week and is running well. It's just natural after a major surgery to feel those cuts and get the confidence in them to where you can do it at full speed takes time. I think he is still picking up speed the farther away from that he gets. He is closer and closer to what he was a year ago, but again it's just natural after a major surgery to gain that confidence back and to get those breaks back."
On if a win would but Oklahoma in the Big 12 Championship game:
"You would hope so. I`m not going to sit here and debate all of that. We are concentrated on going to Oklahoma State and being as prepared as we can be and focused to play a strong game. That's what we have to do and that's what we are looking at."
On Oklahoma State's offense:
"They do a great job and it really all begins with them running the football. They do it various ways with a couple of excellent running backs, but Zac Robinson adds another dimension as well. You really have to be physical and disciplined up front to read out their schemes and be in position to tackle. They are going to try and fool you with the play-action pass. Zac Robinson is an excellent thrower and they have excellent targets out there for him to hit. They have a lot of very good skilled guys and they are able to spread the ball around to them, so you have to really be disciplined and be able to handle the run but also to defend the pass as well."
On the performance against Texas Tech:
|| Sophomore RB Mossis Madu
"As long as I've been here, it's the best, from special teams, to defense and whatever else. Every single position played hard. If you look at all the grades we all made, you can tell we played hard. It was the best I've seen us play since I've been here."
On playing in road games:
"So far, we've been a really good road team. We've been putting up numbers away, just the same as we have at home. I think if we go out there and play to our capability, we'll be able to do it away too."
On Oklahoma State's defense:
"Their defense is good. They're not ranked 11th in the nation for no reason. We've watched their film one day and they fly around to the ball. We're going to have to go out there and give them our best shot like we did with Texas Tech."
On what got the running game going against Texas Tech:
"I think what got it going was just our coaches really putting it in our heads that we're going to have to pound the ball to be the kind of Oklahoma team that teams in the past have been. All of the great teams in Oklahoma have been able to pound the ball. We want to go out there and make sure to run the ball and get those deep balls like we did."
On what he's seen different in running back DeMarco Murray:
"He's got that little pep in his step. You'll see it out there; he's making cuts and running around full speed. It's kind of one thing, as the season goes on, you get better at. He's getting his little groove back and only better things are about to come for him."
On the rivalry of the Bedlam game over any other rivalry:
|| Sophomore DB Dominique Franks
"I think this is number one. Just being an Oklahoma kid, it's non-stop Bedlam. Just going out in public, Oklahoma fans don't want to lose to OSU, and OSU fans don't want to lose to Oklahoma. So I think it's a bigger toll than Texas only because we come into more contact with OSU fans."
On the challenge Oklahoma's defense will face against OSU:
"Well, when we played Tech, all of the receivers got the ball pretty much evenly. At Oklahoma State, they throw it to [wide receiver] Dez Bryant the most; he has 68 catches. Then the next guy has 35, which is a tight end. So if we can stop the run and stop him, then we have a great chance of shutting down the offense.
On the type of challenge Dez Bryant presents:
"More of a deep bomb threat. Zac [Robinson] is going to throw it up there to him. He's a big physical guy, and he's great when the ball is up in the air. We have to make sure and get a body on him and contest him on the d-bombs."
On OSU's run-game being the best he has seen all year:
"Oh, yes. They've got a great running back, Kendall Hunter,[Keith] Toston and all those guys. It's going to be a really big challenge for us to tackle them in the open field and not allow them to get big plays."
On putting the BCS aside and concentrating on this Saturday:
"We just have to realize that no matter where we are at, we have to come out and win. It's all on us. We can't worry about the voters or anything like that. We have to come out and perform to the best of our abilities.
"We just have to come out and focus the way we did against Texas Tech, and hopefully we can have the same success."