10 Things We Learned in Oklahoma's Win Against West Virginia
After a monotonous, sloppy game at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium, the Oklahoma Sooners have earned an ugly 16-7 victory against the visiting West Virginia Mountaineers.
Last season's 50-49 Oklahoma victory in Morgantown, W.V. is but a distant memory after this low-scoring affair, though there is much to take away from the game film.
Despite the poor play from both teams, plenty was left to be learned about both teams.
What lessons can be learned?
Let's get started.
West Virginia's Defense Is the Real Deal
Last season's West Virginia defense certainly didn't hold court with its offensive counterparts.
The Mountaineers defense allowed at least 30 points or more nine times last season, leading many to be fearful of the unit's performance this season, particularly after allowing 17 points to FCS member William and Mary last week.
Saturday against Oklahoma, the Mountaineers played a bend-but-don't-break style, allowing more than 300 rushing yards, but only yielding 16 points on the evening.
The unit played opportunistically, taking advantage of four Oklahoma turnovers.
Unfortunately, the West Virginia offense committed four turnovers of its own.
Oklahoma Is Overrated...For Now
Entering the season ranked 16th nationally, expectations are, once again, sky high for the Sooners.
Yet they struggled to dispatch a West Virginia team that narrowly escaped FCS member William and Mary last week.
And the mistakes within the contest were more than noteworthy—nine penalties for 53 yards and four turnovers should be a large cause of concern for Oklahoma fans.
If the Sooners don't prove this performance to be an anomaly, the doubters will grow even louder.
Trevor Knight Isn't the QB We Thought He Was
Trevor Knight, a redshirt freshman, won the Sooners' starting quarterback battle over Blake Bell during fall camp but was wholly unimpressive during the victory.
Knight finished the evening having completed 10 of 20 passing attempts for 119 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions.
The lone bright spot of Knight's performance was his ability as a scrambler; the quarterback finished with 42 rushing yards on seven carries.
But until Knight proves himself as a passer, the starting job will be up for grabs.
West Virginia's Starting Quarterback Position Is Unsettled
Inheriting former starting quarterback Geno Smith's old job isn't an enviable task, and Paul Millard has learned that the hard way.
The junior quarterback completed 21 of 41 passing attempts for 218 yards and one interception, while not convincing anyone he's the man for the job.
Calls for Clint Trickett to get an opportunity were ringing throughout the West Virginia fanbase throughout the second half, if not the latter portion of the second quarter.
Both Offenses Are Inept
At first glance, you'd think Oklahoma and West Virginia combining for 822 total yards would mean two brilliant offensive performances.
Despite the spectacular yardage gained by both teams, only 23 total points were to show for it.
And the eight combined turnovers committed by both teams were enough to make this quite the ugly affair.
West Virginia's Narrow Win Against William and Mary Was an Anomaly
West Virginia's scare against William and Mary last week—a 24-17 victory—was just that.
There's no reason for Mountaineers fans to worry about that victory, despite the way in which it felt like a painful loss.
Competing with 16th-ranked Oklahoma for 60 minutes on the way to a 16-7 loss is nothing to scoff at. If anything, it proves the Mountaineers' fluky game last week was simply a minor speed bump along a long road of a season.
Oklahoma Is Really Missing Landry Jones
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
Oklahoma's offense has gone down the drain during the first two installments of the post-Landry Jones era.
The current Pittsburgh Steeler was one of the most prolific passers in program history and played a large role in the Sooners' high-octane offense the past three seasons.
With Trevor Knight's disappointing performance and Blake Bell's questionable passing skills to worry about, fans are certainly missing Jones.
Clint Trickett May Be West Virginia's Answer at Quarterback
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sport
Paul Millard was disappointing in his second start at West Virginia, leading fans to clamor for Florida State transfer Clint Trickett.
If anything, a quarterback controversy in brewing in Morgantown.
The offense's struggles with Millard leading the way are enough to warrant a serious look at testing Trickett as the Mountaineers' starter.
Brennan Clay May Be One of the Best Running Backs in the Nation
Brennan Clay was one of the lone bright spots for either team during the ugly contest.
He racked up 170 rushing yards on 22 carries and was the lone source of offense for the Sooners all evening.
Being the only spark of a dismal offense may force Oklahoma to become a run-first offense featuring Clay as the lead back.
The Big 12 Is Wide Open
Aside from Oklahoma State, the rest of the Big 12 appears to be wide open.
The Sooners were pegged as the second-best team in the conference.
But with the way TCU and the rest of conference is playing, the race appears to be wide open.