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Ash and the Longhorns could make Knight's Red River debut a miserable one.
Knight’s three key games will be in succession.
Sept. 28 at No. 11 Notre Dame
This game not only marks the first road game of Oklahoma’s season but also the first of the young quarterback’s career.
Beating the Irish has never been an easy task for the Sooners—they’re just 1-9 all time against Notre Dame. But beating them in South Bend with a freshman quarterback? That may be asking a little too much.
However, with the Irish without Everett Golson and Manti Te’o this time around, Oklahoma might have a chance to pull off the upset. It would be revenge for last year’s 30-13 whooping Notre Dame handed to the Sooners on their home field.
Win or lose, expect Knight to grow up a great deal by the final whistle.
Oct. 5 vs. No. 20 TCU
This game is key for two possible reasons.
Either Knight will be fresh off leading the Sooners to a significant road upset over last season’s title game runners-up, or he will be coming off a night where his team was exposed as young and inexperienced. Regardless, Knight will have no time to bask in the glory or feel bad for himself because another tough opponent will be up next.
Last year, in a 24-17 loss, the Horned Frogs gave Oklahoma a fierce contest. With the return of quarterback Casey Pachall, TCU will be an even tougher out.
This is a big game for Knight.
Oct. 12 vs. No. 15 Texas
This game is always a big one for these two longtime rivals. It becomes even bigger because Knight, who grew up a diehard Longhorns fan, will be making his first start in the series.
Luckily, his Sooners have the edge, having won three straight against Texas. That includes humiliating blowouts of 63-21 and 55-17 the past two years.
However, the Longhorns should be a much-improved team this season. The game should be a lot more closely contested this year.
It will be interesting to see how Knight handles the pressure and attention that comes with a big-time rivalry game such as this one.