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October 29, 2011

Sooners turn top ten showdown into blowout win

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP)-Landry Jones and Ryan Broyles put Oklahoma's season back on track.

Now, Kansas State will see if it can bounce back from its own loss.

Jones threw for a school-record 505 yards and five touchdowns Saturday, his All-American wide receiver caught 14 passes for 171 yards and a score, and the 11th-ranked Sooners took out some pent up frustration with a 58-17 thumping of the No. 10 Wildcats.

Their national championship hopes dashed by Texas Tech last week-along with their 39-game home winning streak-the Sooners (7-1, 4-1) spoiled the same hopes harbored by Kansas State.

Jones shattered the previous school record for yards passing of 468, which he had shared with Sam Bradford, and moved into first place on the Oklahoma career list with 90 touchdown passes.

"We just came out with a focus," he said with a shrug. "Kept playing ball."

Just about the only downer on an otherwise splendid Saturday afternoon was a season-ending injury to leading rusher Dominique Whaley, who fracture his left ankle on the first play of the game.

Whaley will have surgery Sunday to have a pin inserted.

"Really sad for Dom," coach Bob Stoops said. "What a great young man. We'll miss him."

Perhaps so, but the offense looked just fine without him.

Broyles moved into first place on the Big 12's career list with 4,499 yards receiving, Kenny Stills added four catches for 101 yards, and Roy Finch finished with 73 yards rushing and another 69 through the air for the Sooners' potent, fast-paced attack.

They wound up with a season-high 690 yards of offense against the Big 12's top defense.

"Oklahoma's a lot better than some people would want to think, probably, and I did a really miserable job of getting our football team ready to play," Kansas State coach Bill Snyder said.

Relying on a smoke-and-mirrors offense that had been consistently out-gained all season, Kansas State (7-1, 4-1) still managed to piece together its best start since 1999.

It all came undone against Oklahoma.

Collin Klein was sacked seven times, the Wildcats were penalized an uncharacteristic five times, normally reliable kicker Anthony Cantele missed a chip-shot field goal and a defense that had been assignment sound all year crumbled against the Sooners' relentless onslaught.

"It's really painful," cornerback David Garrett said, "but they're a good team, a lot of great athletes. We've just got to come together Monday and bounce back."

Kansas State actually led 17-14 midway through the second quarter, but the Sooners scored late in the half, and John Hubert's fumble with 19 seconds left allowed Michael Hunnicutt to kick a career-long 53-yard field goal on the final play for a 23-17 halftime advantage.

It was the start of 44 straight points scored by the Sooners.

Broyles hauled in a 29-yard touchdown catch early in the third quarter, tightrope walking down the sideline the final 10 yards. Moments later, Jones hit Jaz Reynolds for the second of his two touchdown catches to give Oklahoma a 37-17 lead.

Finch added a 31-yard touchdown run later in the third quarter and the rout was on.

"It was a fun night," Jones said. "The offense was executing and we were doing our job."

By the time Trey Millard slipped through the porous Kansas State defensive front and outran the secondary to the end zone for a 61-yard touchdown run with 11 minutes left, a crowd of 51,004 that had been in such a festive mood early in the afternoon was heading for the doors.

Klein finished with 92 yards and two TDs rushing for Kansas State, but he was just 8 of 16 for 58 yards through the air. Hubert added 71 yards rushing, while Nigel Malone had two interceptions.

That was about it for the positives.

Oklahoma scored on six straight possessions at one point, and the 58 points allowed by Kansas State's defense were the most by a Snyder-coached team at home since Nov. 18, 1989, when Colorado piled up 59. The Wildcats' offense couldn't keep up, managing only 32 yards after halftime.

"We knew what kind of team they were coming in," Klein said. "It wasn't a surprise, but it was frustrating, not being able to execute like we were. We were struggling."

The Sooners have won five straight in the series, their last loss coming in the 2003 conference championship game. They haven't lost in Manhattan since 1996.

More importantly, they're still alive in the Big 12 race.

The Sooners and Wildcats are both chasing undefeated Oklahoma State, with Kansas State getting the first shot against the nation's third-ranked team next weekend. Oklahoma gets its chance against its in-state rival in the annual Bedlam game on Dec. 3.

"We bounced back the way we should," Reynolds said with a sly smile. "There were some plays that we left out there, but we were pretty good."


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