Oklahoma vs Iowa State
No. 11 Oklahoma plays a rare midweek game Thursday night when it travels to Iowa State in Big 12 Conference play (Enter Contest). The contest marks just the fourth time in the 18-year Bob Stoops era that the Sooners will be playing a non-Saturday contest and is just the second time during that span that OU will be playing a game with a shortened week of preparation.
The only other time Oklahoma played with a short week under Stoops came in 2007 when the Sooners, behind quarterback Sam Bradford and running back DeMarco Murray crushed host Tulsa, 62-21, in a Friday-night affair. Oklahoma also played two other midweek games under Stoops, but both of those came after bye weeks. So Thursday night’s game at Jack Trice Stadium, just five days after a 56-3 thrashing of Kansas in Norman, could present more of an obstacle for the Sooners. Also, Stoops is 11-0 versus Iowa State as Oklahoma’s head coach with the average score being 41-9.
ABOUT OKLAHOMA (6-2, 5-0 Big 12)
Quarterback Baker Mayfield, who threw for 342 yards and three touchdowns in a 52-16 win over the Cyclones last year in Norman, has thrown 27 touchdown passes compared to just five interceptions and leads the nation in passing efficiency (195.8). Wide receiver Dede Westbrook set a school record with his fifth straight 100-yard receiving game against Kansas and has an amazing 40 receptions for 881 yards and 11 touchdowns during that span. Sophomore running back Joe Mixon leads the Big 12 and is third nationally with an average of 195.4 all-purpose yards per game but will sit this one out for a violation of team rules while linebacker Ogbonnia Okoronkwo (seven sacks) and cornerback Jordan Thomas (13 passes defended) lead a suspect Sooner defense.
ABOUT IOWA STATE (1-7, 0-5)
The Cyclones come into the contest just five days after losing to Kansas State, 31-26, at home, the team’s fourth straight loss since a 44-10 non-conference victory over Mountain West bottom feeder San Jose State. Quarterback Jacob Park passed for a career-high 301 yards, including 250 in the second half, against Kansas State and has one of the top freshmen wide receivers in the country to throw to in Deshaunte Jones, who has 19 catches for 282 yards and five TDs over the last five games, as well as steady junior Allen Lazard, who has caught a pass in a school-record 31 straight games. Junior safety Kamari Cotton-Moya leads the team in tackles (48) and ranks third in the Big 12 in solo stops with an average of 5.4 per game.