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Q&A With Crimson And Cream Machine On Bedlam

Got the chance to talk to Matt Hofeld of Crimson and Cream Machine, the OU site for SB Nation

Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

It's finally here. Bedlam. Everyone has hyped this game up so much for the past 12 months since Bob Stoops decided to punt again. Last night added onto the hype as the Baylor Bears lost to TCU to give this game even more meaning. Tonight is for all the marbles. So let's learn a little about our fellow Oklahoma school, who has made quite a turnaround since that loss early in the season.

1) Since Texas, this OU team has looked completely different. What do you think happened and what's so different between then and now? Are the holes that were exposed then still there?

The Texas game is going to be the loss that haunts Oklahoma fans for a long time. OU had no business losing that game, and yet they did. The Longhorns did their limited offense and did the basic things really well. I think the other thing that Texas did really well was to continuously be more physical that the Sooners.  There were a few personnel changes that took place after that game, along the offensive line and in the defensive secondary, so I'm not 100% certain that you could say that the struggles that Oklahoma faced are still found today. The Sooners are vastly improved since facing Texas but I would say that if you're looking for an advantage then it'll be attacking the offensive line and being more physical on both sides of the ball.

2) Baker's supposed to be fine, but do you think the concussion will have any impact on how he plays or will we see the same old Baker?

I would guess that if he's 100% then there's not going to be any impact. He's not the kind of guy to play reserved and I wouldn't expect him to change the way he approaches a play or situation due to an injury. This is the same quarterback who jumped up and got in Shawn Oakman's face when they played in Waco and his emotion is at the center of the way he plays. If he's reserved in any way then it'll have an adverse effect on Oklahoma's offensive game plan.

3) OU has a pretty dangerous offense. If OSU could only stop one of either passing or rush, which would be the one that could keep OU from winning?

I liked what TCU did last week. They game planned to stop Oklahoma's passing attack first and then force the Sooners to beat them on the ground. When Mayfield went out it became that much easier to stop the passing game. The Horned Frogs came close to pulling the upset and even when Mayfield was in the Sooners had to settle for field goals a few times early on.

4) Let's talk defense. Sanchez is pretty good but some seem to think the weakness is the passing defense. Which is the weak spot in your eyes and how can OSU expose it?

I think specifically in the secondary the safety position is going to be suspect above anything else. Outside of that, if the Cowboys could get a guy like Glidden matched up on a linebacker then it could pay dividends. OSU would most likely struggle running the ball into the gut of Oklahoma's defense but I think there may be an opportunity in attacking the edges.

5) If Trevor Knight came in again this week, do you expect him to go full Belldozer or look like TCU Knight?

There was clearly an issue with Knight throwing the ball last week against TCU and hopefully he won't need to be utilized in Stillwater on Saturdaynight. One advantage that he may have though would be getting more reps in practice this week and having a better mental approach to the contest. It's grasping at straws a bit but there's an entire Sooner Nation out there that hoping Mayfield is 100% for a reason.

6) Give me your prediction on what you think will happen.

Its Bedlam football and that says a lot right there. The two teams are split evenly over the last four years and punt returns have been significant in each of the last three. I don't see this being a blowout in any sense but I do see the Sooners sneaking off with a 35-21 win. I can see OU surviving a late Oklahoma State rally that pulls the game to within one score.