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Big 12 showdown pits Sooners against Wildcats

With their chances of playing for the BCS ranked Oklahoma Sooners will ranked Kansas State Wildcats.

Oklahoma had opened the season at 6-0 and was ranked as high as second in the country, but Texas Tech put an end to the Sooners' 39-game home winning streak last Saturday by posting a 41-38 win in front of a stunned crowd in Norman. OU's last loss at home came against TCU in the 2005 season opener, and the Sooners are now 75-3 in Norman under current head coach Bob Stoops.

Stoops credited the Red Raiders with coming into a hostile environment, keeping their composure, and making the plays necessary to win the game. "I told our players, we were definitely out-coached and out-played." He continued, "Defensively, we really got outplayed and offensively, it was just too little too late."

Bill Snyder's Kansas State squad is a perfect 7-0 to this point in the campaign, marking its best start since 1999 when it began the season with nine straight wins. The Wildcats whipped in-state rival Kansas last weekend, 59-21, earning them their fourth conference win in the process. K-State opened the season with a narrow 10-7 win over FCS foe Eastern Kentucky, but has averaged 37.5 ppg since.

While knowing there are some issues his team needs to work out, Snyder was obviously pleased with last week's outcome, "We were not without our faults but I thought our youngsters played well and particularly played well when they had to. We got off to a good start and then stalled a little bit, but they came back and really opened it up in the third quarter."

Oklahoma owns a commanding 70-14-4 lead in the all-time series with Kansas State, and the Sooners have won the last four meetings.

Oklahoma Heisman hopeful QB Landry Jones did his best to keep the Sooners' undefeated record in tact last weekend, throwing for 412 yards and five TDs. Unfortunately, the Oklahoma defense didn't hold up its end of the bargain and even a furious fourth-quarter comeback couldn't keep Stoops' troops from suffering their initial loss of the season. WR Kenny Stills caught eight balls for 135 yards and two scores, while All-American Ryan Broyles finished with seven grabs for 84 yards. RB Roy Finch led the OU ground attack with a career- high 93 yards on only 13 carries (7.2 ypc).

Jones is completing 65.3 percent of his passes for 369.9 ypg this season, and he has 21 TD passes against seven INTs. Broyles has caught 67 balls for 899 yards and nine scores, while RB Dominique Whaley, who missed last week's game with an injury, highlights the ground assault with 627 yards and nine TDs.

Texas Tech has been one of the most explosive offensive teams in the country for quite some time now, so it was not surprising that the Red Raiders were able to move the ball and put points on the board, even against an Oklahoma defense that have given up more than 17 points just one other time this season. Tech QB Seth Doege threw for 441 yards and four TDs to power the Red Raiders to victory in a game they started as huge underdogs. The visitors finished with 572 yards of total offense, claimed a 10-minute advantage in the time of possession battle, and scored on five of their six trips to the red zone. DB Aaron Colvin and LB Travis Lewis both logged double-digit tackles for the Sooners, but the team failed to come up with a turnover.

Lewis (51 stops) is the team's leading tackler on the year, and the Sooners have made a ton of impact plays on defense, posting 56 TFL, 27 sacks and nine INTs. DE Frank Alexander has seven sacks, while DB Tony Jefferson has four picks.

Stoops, a former K-State assistant (1989-95), was very disappointed in the play of his defense, "I thought it was very poor. Obviously they weren't coached well and we didn't play well. Tech came out, they hit us first and they hit us last. They hit us in between and we couldn't stop them."

Kansas State QB Collin Klein threw for a career-high 195 yards and a TD, while adding 92 yards and a whopping four TDs on the ground in the team's rout of Kansas last week. Freshman Tyler Lockett returned a kickoff 97 yards for a score to open the second half, marking his second return for a TD in as many weeks. He also added a receiving score as part of his five-catch, 110-yard performance. RB John Hubert helped the team's cause by rushing for 92 yards as well, and he added a TD on a five-yard run in the second quarter.

Both Klein and Hubert average in excess of 90 ypg rushing for the season, and the former has scored 14 times on the ground while passing for eight TDs. Klein, who ranks third in the country in rushing yards by a QB, averages just 133.4 ypg through the air, so it's clear that the Wildcats prefer to run the ball as much as possible.

The KSU defense stood tall last week, yielding just 76 net rushing yards to a Jayhawk offense that has struggled all season long. Kansas did manage to post 210 passing yards, but having to play from behind typically forces a team to throw more than it would usually like. Adding insult to injury, Kansas was penalized nine times (105 yards), and lost a couple of fumbles. DB David Garrett led the K-State stand with 11 tackles, nine of which were solo efforts, and DE Meshak Williams was credited with both of the team's sacks.

Kansas State is a vastly improved defensive club this year, particularly against the run as foes are averaging just 93.9 ypg. Furthermore, the 'Cats are yielding 19.7 ppg, while allowing opponents to convert a mere 32 percent of their third-down attempts. Standout LB Arthur Brown continues to lead the team in tackles with 53, and Garrett is next with 44. Williams has logged six sacks, while DB Nigel Malone has picked off a Big 12-best four passes.