The Oklahoma Sooners had a very nice 11-2 year a season ago, which ended with a 45-31 Sugar Bowl win over Alabama. Now the Sooners are looking to build off of their late season momentum and take the next step. Which is an invitation to play in the inaugural NCAA Playoff System. Preview & schedule are below.
The Sooners scored 32.8 ppg on offense last year, with Blake Bell and Trevor Knight sharing the QB duties throughout the year. Trevor, though, solidified the spot coming into this year by guiding the Sooners to wins over Oklahoma State and Alabama to end the year. The Sooners do lose some key pieces on offense, including their top 2 RBs and 3 of their 4 top WR’s, but this team had plenty of depth last year and there are players just waiting to step up and take their turn. RB Keith Ford was rated #7 coming out of HS and this year the Sooners signed the #3 RB out of HS in Joe Mixon and they also have a #15 and a #22 RB on their roster as well. The WR Corps does return its second leading receiver from last year in Sterling Shepard, who caught 51 balls for 603 yards and 7 TDs last year. He will join a plethora of highly touted WRs to give Trevor plenty of targets to throw to. The OL has 3 senior starters back and is rated as one of the best lines in the nation. The defense is loaded with 23 lettermen, including 9 starters back. The LB corps is the strength this team and is rated 9th best in the land. The leaders of this group are Frank Shannon, who led the team in tackles last year (92) and Erik Striker, who led them in sacks (6.5). The secondary ranks 12th in the nation and is led by Zach Sanchez, who had the 13 PBUs and 2 INTs last year. The DL is very strong as well with all 3 starters back and plenty of solid depth.
This Sooners team should be an improved group on offense, even though they lost some key pieces. Trevor Knight has a year under his belt and the skill positions are all loaded with highly touted players and everyone will be playing behind an OL this rated 6th best in the nation. The defense rates overall as one of the best in the nation, with big play makers at every level, plus allot of depth as well. The schedule seems very kind, with a soft non-conf schedule and their toughest conference games at home and getting the likes of WVA, TCU, Iowa State and Texas Tech on the road. This team has an excellent shot at running the table, but more importantly they should be all set to grab on of the 4 spots in the playoff bracket. KEY TREND: 9-1 ATS after playing Texas Tech
2014 Oklahoma Sooners Football Schedule
Sat, Aug 30th, 2014 Louisiana Tech
Sat, Sep 6th, 2014 at Tulsa
Sat, Sep 13th, 2014 Tennessee
Sat, Sep 20th, 2014 at West Virginia
Sat, Oct 4th, 2014 at TCU
Sat, Oct 11th, 2014 Texas
Sat, Oct 18th, 2014 Kansas State
Sat, Nov 1st, 2014 at Iowa State
Sat, Nov 8th, 2014 Baylor
Sat, Nov 15th, 2014 at Texas Tech
Sat, Nov 22nd, 2014 Kansas
Sat, Dec 6th, 2014 Oklahoma State
Info gathered From Phil Steele's CFB Preview and Athlon Sports
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