Oklahoma-WVU grades: Run game carries Sooners to victory

The top-graded players and biggest storylines from Oklahoma’s win over the West Virginia Mountaineers.

| 3 weeks ago
(Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

(Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

Oklahoma-WVU grades: Run game carries Sooners to victory


Oklahoma Sooners 56, West Virginia Mountaineers 28

Here are the top-graded players and biggest storylines from Oklahoma’s 56-28 win over West Virginia.

Oklahoma Sooners

Quarterback grade: Baker Mayfield, 72.7

Mayfield impressive despite throwing just 15 passes all game

Mayfield has been arguably the best quarterback in the nation this season, and he continued his strong play in this game. Though his numbers don’t reflect it, Mayfield had a great game on Saturday night. He had an adjusted completion percentage of 86.7 percent (13-of-15) thanks to four drops by his receivers, all of which would’ve been for first downs. His only bad pass was an overthrow on a slant, as even his interception was just a great play by the defender rather than anything to do with his throw.

mayfield-pass-chart

Top offensive grades:

RT Bobby Evans, 80.4
HB Joe Mixon, 78.5
LT Orlando Brown, 77.4
TE Dimitri Flowers, 76.2
WR Geno Lewis, 75.2

Run game paces Oklahoma offense, carries them to victory

With the inclement weather that Oklahoma faced, they decided to run the ball early and often. Joe Mixon had yet another big day, rushing for 147 yards on 23 carries, with 93 of those coming after first contact. He also forced seven missed tackles. Perine had a solid day too, gaining 160 yards on 31 carries and forcing four missed tackles. They were helped by the edge-setting by both tackles Bobby Evans and Orlando Brown, who had run block grades of 76.9 and 78.4 respectively.

Top defensive grades:

LB Jordan Evans, 89.5
ED Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, 77.8
LB Caleb Kelly, 75.7
DI Matt Romar, 73.4
DI Neville Gallimore, 71.6

Big performances by some defenders are just enough to hold on to victory

There was a lot to be disappointed with when it came to the Sooners defense, as they surrendered a ton of yards but were able to bail themselves out by forcing big turnovers. Jordan Evans once again had a huge game, making a play on the ball early on that he almost intercepted, and then getting an interception and returning it for a touchdown later on. Overall the pass rush was a big issue, as the Sooners finished with just one sack, one hit and four hurries the entire game.

West Virginia Mountaineers

Quarterback grade: Skylar Howard, 59.1

Howard struggles to keep Mountaineers in game early on, can’t quite bring them back

It was a tough day throwing the football for Skylar Howard, as he never really looked comfortable throwing the football all day. On throws more than ten yards downfield he connected on just 4-of-12 passes but did gain 137 yards and two touchdowns on those throws. But he had a couple of really bad throws where he stared down his receivers and completely misread coverage, one that resulted in the huge pick-six.

howard-pass-chart

Top offensive grades:

HB Justin Crawford, 90.9
RG Kyle Bosch, 78.4
C Tyler Orlosky, 69.5
LT Colton McKivitz, 66.7
WR Shelton Gibson, 64.3

Crawford puts the Mountaineers on his back and almost rushes them back into the game

On the first play for the Mountaineers, RB Kennedy McKoy was injured, which meant the rushing load fell squarely on Crawford’s shoulders. And he did not disappoint, carrying the ball 24 times for an incredible 330 yards (13.8 YPC). He gained 204 of those yards after first contact, which works out to an average of 8.5 YAC per carry. He also forced 11 missed tackles, which works out to an unbelievable elusive rating of 389.6 for the game.

Top defensive grades:

S Kyzir White, 80.7
DI Darrien Howard, 77.7
LB Al-Rasheed Benton, 76.1
CB Rasul Douglas, 74.3
ED Adam Shuler II, 70.0

Defense just can’t quite handle high-powered Sooners offense

There were definitely positives for the Mountaineers defensively in this game. Rasul Douglas arguably won his matchup with Dede Westbrook, as he allowed just two catches for 100 yards, but one of them was a screen pass in which he forced Westbrook inside towards his linebacker like he was supposed to. He had a beautiful interception later in the game in coverage on Westbrook too. And Darrien Howard was big up the middle in the run game for the Mountaineers, finishing with a team-high run defense grade of 82.4.

 

| Analyst

Bryson has been an analyst at Pro Football Focus since 2014, and has also been a contributor to 120 Sports.

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