Oklahoma entered Saturday night's game against West Virginia as the 12th-ranked team in the nation and clinging to hopes of returning to the spotlight in a BCS bowl. And with their narrow 50-49 win in Morgantown, the Sooners can still keep their eyes on the BCS bowl prize, and they have Landry Jones to thank for that.
Jones has been criticized for much of the last year and half for not showing up in big moments, shrinking under pressure and not adequately filling the shoes of Sam Bradford. Well, tonight, the senior quarterback stood up and was the rock his team needed as Bob Stoops and Oklahoma keep pushing to return to a big-time bowl game.
On the road, when his team needed him most, Jones showed up huge for the Sooners. He threw for 554 yards, six touchdowns, just one interception and, most importantly, the winning score with fewer than 30 seconds to play. The Oklahoma signal-caller, in going 38-of-51, outdueled the Mountaineers' "September Heisman Winner" Geno Smith.
Jones completed deep passes. He complete long passes. He threw accurate balls and gave his receivers a chance to make big things happen in the open field. Oklahoma, led by Jones, did its job tonight and now sits squarely in the mix to be selected by a BCS bowl.
Kansas State, by losing to Baylor, did make things interesting, as the Sooners go from Fiesta Bowl replacement to BCS at-large hopeful. However, by putting up a show-stopping performance and getting his team a W, Landry Jones has kept his team in the hunt for a return to the big stage.