Oklahoma vs Texas: Sooners Running Game Will Be Too Much to Handle for Longhorns

Ryan RudnanskySenior Writer IOctober 11, 2013

NORMAN, OK - SEPTEMBER 14:   Running back Brennan Clay #24 of the Oklahoma Sooners leaves the field after the game against the Tulsa Golden Hurricane September 14, 2013 at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, Oklahoma. The Sooners defeated the Golden Hurricane 51-20.  (Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images)
Brett Deering/Getty Images

New Texas defensive coordinator Greg Robinson faces an uphill battle against Brennan Clay and No. 12 Oklahoma on Saturday. 

It's not going to be a fun experience for Robinson or the Longhorns.

Heading into Saturday's Big 12 clash at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, the Sooners rank 20th in the nation in yards per carry, according to CFBStats.com

The Longhorns, on the other hand, rank 110th in yards allowed per carry. That includes ceding 11 rushing touchdowns in five games.

It's a recipe for disaster for Texas.

Sep 14, 2013; Austin, TX, USA; Texas Longhorns head coach Mack Brown (left) talks with defensive coordinator Greg Robinson (right) against the Mississippi Rebels during the second half at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium. Ole Miss beat Texas 44-23.
Brendan Maloney-USA TODAY Sports

It's worth noting that Texas' defense has been better in its last two games under Robinson. The Longhorns have forced five turnovers (four forced fumbles, one interception) in the wins over Kansas State and Iowa State.

Still, the Longhorns allowed Iowa State junior Aaron Wimberly to rush for 117 yards and a touchdown in the 31-30 nail-biter last week. How do you think they are going to fare against Clay and the Sooners?

Clay has rushed for 450 yards and three touchdowns on 6.6 yards per carry this season. That includes averaging 5.5 yards per carry at Notre Dame on Sept. 28 and exploding for 111 yards and a touchdown on nine carries against TCU last week.

But Oklahoma's rushing attack goes beyond Clay. Senior Damien Williams rushed for 161 yards in the first two weeks of the season against Louisiana-Monroe and West Virginia, and dual-threat quarterback Blake Bell has scampered for 175 yards on 40 carries this season. Bell has rushed for 120 yards in the last two wins against Notre Dame and TCU.

So, in terms of stopping the run, Texas probably won't be doing a lot of it.

NORMAN, OK - SEPTEMBER 14:  Quarterback Blake Bell #10 and running back Brennan Clay #24 of the Oklahoma Sooners celebrate a touchdown September 14, 2013 at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, Oklahoma. The Sooners defeated the Golden Hurr
Brett Deering/Getty Images

The only way the Longhorns have a chance is if they force fumbles like they have been doing the past two games. Junior defensive lineman Cedric Reed has forced two fumbles by himself in that span.

On the other hand, the Sooners have lost just one fumble since losing two against West Virginia in Week 2, and that was on a kickoff return last week.

Going up against a run-heavy offense that has taken care of the ball lately, don't expect Texas to upset Oklahoma on Saturday in Dallas.

 

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