User ID
Password
  Forgot User ID
or Register Today!
VegasInsider.com
Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us on Google+ VI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds
Home
NFL
NBA
NHL
MLB
NCAA FB
NCAA BK
Soccer
Golf
Auto
Horses
More
Betting Tools

 
Sooners ready to move past bowl win

New Sportsbook.ag customers: Make your 1st bet, get your 2nd bet free, 100%, winnings paid in cash.
Join Now

Already have an account? Click here to view new Exclusive Rewards!

NORMAN, Okla. (AP) - Oklahoma got a lot of attention with its upset victory over Alabama in the Sugar Bowl.

Advertisement
As good as it was for the program, the Sooners are looking forward. The Big 12 favorites begin practice Aug. 5 in preparation for the Aug. 30 opener against Louisiana Tech.

''They've been getting stroked for a long time about Alabama,'' co_offensive coordinator Jay Norvell said Thursday. ''That's ancient history as far as the football world is concerned. It's time to turn the page and move on and see what this 2014 team can do.''

The challenge for Oklahoma will be keeping a team that has been praised all offseason hungry.

''I told my guys what we did last year is last year,'' defensive line coach Jerry Montgomery said. ''We haven't done anything this year. We still have to prove ourselves. We're going to have guys that didn't play much last year that are going to play. We've got guys that played a bunch of ball last year. We've still got to go out and play the man in front of us. We've got to work well as a team. I don't believe in the hype. It's not where you start, it's where you finish.''

This team appears to be in position to contend for a national title, with significant experience returning and a strong freshman class. The Sooners should be especially strong on defense, where 11 players with at least five career starts return from a unit that led the Big 12 in total defense and pass defense and ranked second in scoring defense and rushing defense.

Defensive coordinator Mike Stoops says the unit can be even better this year. Last year, the Sooners switched from a 4-3 to a 3-4 and adjusted on the fly. This year, there is a greater sense of comfort for coaches and players that should allow the team's improved athletic ability to shine.

''I think we're a bigger, longer, faster football team than we were at any time last year,'' Stoops said. ''Our size and our strength has grown.''

Second-team All-Big 12 defensive end Charles Tapper is back. He was second on the team in tackles for loss (9) and sacks (5 1/2) last season.

Defensive tackle Jordan Phillips is back after missing nine games last season with a back injury. Stoops said the 6-foot-6, 341-pounder is a difference maker.

''We just want Jordan to play where he was a year ago, and hopefully, he'll make a huge difference in our defense if we can keep him on the field and keep him healthy,'' Stoops said. ''He feels great, so that's a good sign. We instantly get better with him on the field.''

Linebackers Frank Shannon, Dominique Alexander and Eric Striker combined for 222 tackles last year. Jordan Evans, who missed five games last season with an ankle injury, is back. Geneo Grissom, who will move from defensive end to outside linebacker, had two sacks, two fumble recoveries and a touchdown in the Sugar Bowl.

Zack Sanchez earned numerous honors as a freshman cornerback last season. Senior Julian Wilson, the team's starting nickel back last year, also will be considered at cornerback.

Stoops said the Sooners are two-deep across the board.

''Players get complacent and content when they're not pushed,'' he said. ''So we've got a bunch of guys pushing for playing time, and to me, that's the best thing we have going for us right now.''

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2014
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

  
HEADLINES
Nelson: Auburn at Kansas State
Rogers: Bad Company - Week 4
Williams: ACC Report - Week 4
ASA: Big Ten Report - Week 4
Edwards: Florida at Alabama
Marshall: Tech Trends - Week 4
Sportsbook: Auburn faces tough road test
Nelson: 4th Quarter Covers - Week 3
Rose: Top 25 Betting Recap - Week 3
MORE HEADLINES
 
Why Buy Picks From VegasInsider.com
NCAAFB College Football Handicapper Sports Picks Records
NCAAFB Hot Streaks
6-1 Sat., 13-2 Run, +961 TY
+923 Picks This Year
3-1 Saturday, 9-3 L3 Saturdays
7-1 Guarantees, 14-7 Picks TY
4-1 Record Saturday
5-1 Last 6 College FB Picks
7-1 Over/Unders This Year
3-1 Last 4 CFB Totals
5-2 Week 3, 6-1 Guarantees TY
7-3 Record Last 10 Picks
5-0 Fridays This Year
7-3 L2 Saturdays, 10-3 L13 Picks
3-1 Saturday, 4-0 Guarantees TY
4-1 Fridays This Year
6-3 Week 3 Record
6-0 L6 G-Plays, 5-2 Totals TY
NCAA FB College Football Expert Sports Picks- Auburn Tigers at Kansas State Wildcats
2014 CFB SEASON PICK RECORDS
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Chip Chirimbes + 961
Michael Black + 923
Stephen Nover + 600
Last Week's Leaders
Handicapper Money
Chip Chirimbes + 595
Greg Smith + 390
Kevin Rogers + 380
Percentage Leaders
Handicapper Pct
Chip Chirimbes 75 %
Stephen Nover 67 %
The SportsBoss 67 %
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Stephen Nover + 590
Pat Hawkins + 490
Bruce Marshall + 485
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
Jimmy Boyd + 590
Stephen Nover + 480
Paul Bovi + 290
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Mike Rose + 366
Marc Lawrence + 290
The SportsBoss + 280
MORE PICK RECORDS
  
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 10% off a Live Odds subscription, SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!
VI Daily Fantasy NFL Perfect Lineup Contest