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August 31, 2014

OU defense gets plenty of work for entire depth chart

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Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops was pleased with how his defense performed in the Sooners' 48-16 victory against La. Tech on Saturday night.

The Sooners held the highly heralded Kenneth Dixon and the Bulldogs to 54 yards rushing and just 245 total offensive yards. La. Tech didn't even get on the scoreboard until the Sooners were up 31-0.

"I was really pleased with the No. 1 defense," Stoops said. "When they were all out there together, I thought they were really strong and great against the run and getting after the quarterback -- all those kinds of things."

video by Eddie Radosevich

OU held ULT quarterback Cody Sokol to 22-of-36 passing for 191 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. He was consistently pressured, harassed and made to feel uncomfortable inside Oklahoma Memorial Stadium.

"They fly around the field," Sokol said. "They've got good speed, and they've got some big guys up front. They do a lot of great things schematically in their defense to kind of keep you off balance."

The Sooners were able to keep consistent pressure on Sokol because they were so fresh up front on the defensive line. Stoops admitted he's never had so many on the defensive line he could rotate through in one game.

Defensive tackle Jordan Phillips made his return and looked like his old disruptive self over the nose.

"It's been way too long," Phillips said. "It was nice to go out there and play without any pain and just have fun."

Defensive linemen Matt Romar, Matt Dimon, Charles Walker and D.J. Ward among others all got snaps in behind OU's regular starting line. Defensive coordinator Mike Stoops thought it was great to see his younger defensive linemen, linebackers and defensive backs play snaps in a live game situation.

"It is good to play because it keeps people involved," Mike Stoops said. "It's the good thing about having a night like tonight because twos think they should be ones. Sometimes you need them to go out there and see how the ones do it and what they need to change."

One of the twos, linebacker Aaron Franklin, ended up leading the Sooners in tackles with six, and true freshman corner back Jordan Thomas accounted for four tackles of his own.

Linebacker Dominique Alexander loved having fresh defensive linemen in front of him, keeping him clean to make plays. He was ecstatic to see his linebacking corps and the secondary play so well, too.

But there is one thing the Tulsa native wanted to accomplish that the Sooners didn't against La. Tech.

"Shutout -- not let anybody score. I'm trying to get a shutout against TU," Alexander said.

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