Tahlequah Daily Press

January 5, 2013

Shinn at 3 p.m.: This was the year to advance at Sooners' expense


The Norman Transcript

IRVING, Texas — Oklahoma had the unique distinction of facing all three Heisman Trophy finalists this season. After Johnny Manziel smashed Cotton Bowl records 516 total yards, throwing for two touchdowns and running for two more, it was clear the Sooners were impressed.

“Best player I think I’ve ever played,” OU defensive coordinator Mike Stoops said. “He just does so many good thing. Like I said, he’s got magic. He’s throwing the ball better than he did early in the season and he understands what they’re doing. His offensive line does a great job stretching plays for him. He’ll have a chance to win four of them if he stays healthy.”

But Manziel joined a list of several players who had career days against the Sooners this season.

• Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o collects 11 tackles, a sack and a game-sealing interception in the Sooners’ 30-13 loss to the Fighting Irish on Oct. 27.

• Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein rushed for 79 yards and a touchdown and threw for 149 more in the Wildcats’ 24-19 victory over OU on Sept. 21.

Those were just the Heisman Trophy finalists. There were others that had career-making performances at the Sooners’ expense.

• West Virginia receiver/running back Tavon Austin rushed for 345 yards in OU’s 50-49 victory over the Mountaineers on Nov. 17. It was over half of Austin’s season total of 643. He had 1,289 as a receiver.

• UTEP running back Nathan Jeffery rushed for 177 yards in OU’s 24-7 victory over the Miners. Jeffery finished the season with 897 yards.