Rives Mitchell and Dave Myrick
One of the most anticipated press conferences of the young season took place Monday morning. Normally, these interviews with the coaches are extremely vanilla. After the recent controversy around Coach Lebby on Saturday, however, media and fans were itching to hear the latest update.
After OU’s 28-11 victory against SMU on Saturday, OU recruiting analyst Parker Thune took a very interesting picture of OC Jeff Lebby that quickly blew up across the twitter sphere.
The picture showed Lebby with a notorious (for the wrong reasons) college football figure in Art Briles, who happens to be the grandfather of Lebby’s children. Briles was fired from Baylor after a large rape scandal which took place under his leadership.
Though Briles was never found guilty under the law, his reputation is forever stained. Bringing a man like Briles onto the field, sporting OU gear no less, is the kind of distraction any program wants to avoid.
Upon his press conference this morning, Lebby prepared a long statement explaining the decision.
“After the game the other night was something that created a distraction, and I apologize for that. That was not the intent at all. The intent was just to celebrate with my family.”
A surprise to no one, this is a situation that OU wants to put behind them as quickly as possible. Any added drama during the grind of a season can have huge effects on a team’s spirit and focus.
Drama aside, it was not the cleanest of days for the Oklahoma offense. Outside of a few good drives, the offense sputtered along for the majority of the game. It wasn’t until the fourth quarter that they truly found their footing, which was led by the run game.
Despite Tawee Walker and Marcus Major showing flashes of greatness on Saturday, everyone is curious about the Sooners dynamic duo of Javontae Barnes and Gavin Sawchuk. Both players showed tremendous potential in the Cheez-it bowl to end last season, but have been essentially non-factors to start 2023.
“The stress is being able to get 2 and 27 going. They’ve worked themselves back into being in a really good position.”
While Coach Lebby seems committed to getting these two more touches, the proof will be in the pudding these next few weeks. The Sophomore tandem are simply too talented to be held off the field.
Dave gave his thoughts on Coach Roof and the defense below:
Oklahoma defensive coordinator Ted Roof seemed pleased with his unit’s performance, now two games into the season.
One question he was asked did catch our attention. Roof was asked how the solid start to this season differs from last season. A legitimate question followed by a legitimate response.
“Depth. Overall depth on the defense is better. Year two in a system. Guys are playing faster, more free.”
Roof even snuck in a smile on his face when asked about true freshman safety Peyton Bowen, who seemed to be all over the field Saturday night. Talking about the staff, Roof said, “we’re realizing football makes sense to him.”They’re going to need it to continue to make sense and give the young former five star safety more reps, because he is an elite talent. Bowen gave OU its first boost of momentum on Saturday, blocking a punt that set up the Sooners first scoring drive of the day.
Bowen could be a game changer for a unit that finished 120th in scoring defense a year ago.
Post practice availability will take place tonight. We will be on the scene to provide you with all the juicy quotes.
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