Monday blowout: Venables' coaching curve and more (perhaps not limited to sports)
Talking the Sooner head coach; polls, football and otherwise; and the best play-by-play guy going
Note: Maybe this will be a Monday thing. Or maybe not and it will be an only-this-Monday thing. We’ll see. You’ll notice a bit of a format here, the old “column-and-notes,” good for a bunch of sports and some Oklahoma politics, too.
Much happened Saturday upon Owen Field, where Oklahoma topped Kansas 52-42, snapping an embarrassing three-game losing streak.
Some of it we tackled in this postgame piece.
At least two other things, we did not.
Here they are:
One, despite Sooner offensive coordinator Jeff Lebby saying OU would be done with the Wildcat-direct snap package were quarterback Dillon Gabriel to return to face the Jayhawks, though it produced yards and first downs against Texas, the Sooners weren’t.
OU’s second touchdown, a 2-yard run from Eric Gray, came on a direct snap. Though he failed to reach the end zone in the first quarter via direct snap, Jovantae Barnes got another chance in the second quarter and scored from 6.
Maybe Lebby’s a fine poker player and was playing coy when five days earlier he put out the kibosh. More likely, he came to his senses, or Brent Venables brought him to his senses.
For our purposes, let’s presume it was Venables.
Because, two, if it was Venables, it’s an indicator that given crystal clarity on process, culture and other tried-and-true big-picture, program-building imperatives, he’s also beginning to pick up the week-to-week differences between coordinating and the top job.
Sooner fans should hope it’s that because, in the final moments of the first half, with the ball and a 35-21 lead, Venables proved how much learning there’s still to be done.
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