Mims arrives, OU rolls past Kent State
Sometimes, you just need your best players to be your best players. Not playing up to any sort of high-level standard offensively, Oklahoma needed a wake-up call.
The Sooners have those type of players, though, and maybe nobody who has that ability more than wide receiver Marvin Mims.
Paced by Mims coming alive, the rest of the Sooners came along for the ride as well in a 33-3 win against visiting Kent State on Saturday night.
For 28:50 of the first half, Mims, Dillon Gabriel and the rest of the OU offense just couldn’t get anything going. And then Mims did what he can do.
A 13-yard reception. A 14-yard reception. Then a 36-yard touchdown that woke up the OU fans and allowed everybody to breathe that sigh of relief and a 7-3 halftime lead.
“It was pretty cool. I liked it,” Mims said. “I love it when I get thrown the ball. Just making the most of my opportunities. Even when I’ve got to block for someone else or something, I’m going to try my hardest at it because we’re a team. This year, there’s no type of selfishness. We’re all out there playing football for each other.”
Mims wouldn’t slow down in the second half, either. He finished the game with seven receptions for 163 yards and two touchdowns, connecting on a 58-yard score from Gabriel in the second half.
The defense never let up, and OU fans who might have been flustered or confused in the first half, got to see what the team is capable of in a 24-0 third quarter.
“It’s trust. It’s also big that we have a bunch of guys who can do a bunch of things,” Gabriel said. “Obviously with Marvin, when he has the ball in his hands, he does a lot of special things. He’s very talented. But just him being in the right spot, things working out for him.”
Gabriel finished with 296 passing yards and three touchdowns and didn’t turn the ball over for the second game in a row.
This is who Mims has been since arriving at OU for the 2020 season. When you need a play, he can be the spark. And when he’s not touching it, not a coincidence that the Sooners offense will often sputter.
Mims and Gabriel were able to develop an instant connection. You could see it in the spring, and it has carried over into the first couple of games.
It’s not a shock to anybody who has to see him every day.
“Marvin is just Marvin. I call him Marvelous,” Cheetah Justin Harrington said. “He does a lot of great things. He’s a great practice player. How he does one thing is how he does everything.”
OU accounted for 236 of its 430 offensive yards in the third quarter that also included a forced fumble and recovery by Billy Bowman.
It was a strange Saturday in college football. Usually reserved for November, it was a survive type of weekend. From Notre Dame losing at home to Marshall to Texas A&M being upset by Appalachian State, style points went out the window.
And Kent State had OU teetering a bit at 3-0 late in the first half. Then Mims happened, like in 2021 vs. Texas in helping anchor that historic comeback.
Maybe he is Marvelous.
“He’s my player of the game,” said head coach Brent Venables, rather succinctly after the game.
It just took one. One play, one drive to get everything back on track. For yet another season, OU knows it can count on Mims to deliver.