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Secret "O" in store for Sooners?

I've never been one to buy into the idea teams would withhold an entire offense for a tougher team the following week. Maybe, a few trick plays here or there. But an entire offense?

This week as Miami has prepared for Oklahoma, some of you brought up the idea that UM may have been saving something for the Sooners this week and thus that was the reason Kirby Freeman and the pass offense put up an unimpressive 81 yards against Marshall's weak pass D last Saturday. So I decided to raise the question. And to my surprise, I got a lot of smiles after practice Wednesday when I asked if offensive coordinator Patrick Nix simply didn't want to tip his hand to Oklahoma last week.

Darnell_jenkinsQ: Hey Darnell Jenkins, were you guys holding back?
A: "That's what Coach Nix wanted. And if we do everything against Marshall, they have all our film. Right now, we're just going over offense and preparing ourself."
Q: So people are going to be surprised? Real surprised?
A: "Watch the game Saturday," Jenkins said. "Stay tuned."

Jenkins got me thinking. Maybe there is something to it. But I had to ask some more. How about Lance Leggett?

Q: You caught a lot of quick little flare passes on Saturday, any chance we see you downfield some more?
A: "[Laughter]. I don't want to say anything. You'll see Saturday."
Q: But will the offense be more exciting?
A: "I don't really want to say. Just wait for Saturday. We can throw the ball. I know the fans want to see it. They just got to wait."

Jason Fox smiled when I asked him the same line of questioning. Sam Shields too. As much I want to believe there is some great pass offense in store waiting to be unleashed, I'm still very much skeptical. It's been a long time since I can remember Miami's pass offense being very effective. Why wouldn't Nix want his kids to go into Oklahoma with some confidence it could throw downfield?

For those of you wondering the last time Miami's pass offense actually had a big day, I went back and researched last season. The biggest passing day? 299 yards against Duke. The Canes, in fact, eclipsed the 200-yard passing mark only five times in 13 games last season. For the record, the last 300-yard passing game came against Wake Forest in 2005. What about the last time a Miami receiver had more than 100 yards? Lance Legget (6 catches for 131 yards vs. Duke). It was the only time a Miami receiver went over the 100-yard mark at all last season.

There's no doubt 81 passing yards probably won't be enough to beat Oklahoma Saturday. Miami's pass offense has to be more effective than that because Oklahoma's defensive line is no joke. After speaking with left tackle Jason Fox, center John Rochford and right guard Derrick Morse, all three said OU's d-line is just as good as the one they face in practice everyday, "just younger," Fox told me and "a bit lighter and faster" at defensive tackle according to Morse and Rochford.

"They'll get into your body and try to use a rip move or a club move," Rochford said when describing OU's attack. "It's something we're going to have be ready for. From what I saw on film, it looked like they only had one or two moves each time. They didn't blitz a lot on North Texas, they didn't need to. But we'll be prepared if they bring it this week. These guys are good, they're big, strong, we have to bring our A-game this week."

* I also asked Jenkins what having a guy like Sam Shields (who was suspended last week) back in the lineup would mean to Miami's offense. Apparently, he thinks it will make a huge difference.
"It takes pressure off," Jenkins said. "It takes them from play 3 [defensive backs] over 2 [receivers] or man. Now, they may back up a little because of the speed. He's a big threat. All of us have speed, it just hasn't been shown yet. Like I said, watch Saturday."

Shields is listed third on the depth chart, but Shannon later added "what does that really matter? They all play 35 to 40 plays anyway."


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how many reverses, traps, counters, or motion plays did you see vs. Marshall? I doubt that is the whole playbook we saw in our first game. Let's see

Saturday, Saturday, Saturday

Come one, come all, to the incredible Miami show!!!

I'll say this, the quoted players are giving Oklahoma better respect than the posters of this board. Whether in earnest or if it's sports-talk will remain to be seen.

I think if UM is hanging their hopes on an arial attack, that probably IS their best bet. They'll either win, or sink, with trying for deep touchdowns.

What the hell is an "arial" attack? Will they be using different fonts? LOL @ you.

Texassooner, Just wait and see. The key to this game is speed, which we will know soon who has more.

Texassooner, this game reminds me of the ohio state, and florida game. No body was giving florida a chance to win that game, but they were not counting on florida speed. Most important, they were not counting on the coach. Canes!!!!!!

norm, I don't think you could be MORE wrong. OSU didn't give FU any credit at all. The coaches and players at Oklahoma are distinctly aware of the UM talent and capabilities. Short of this story, I haven't really seen the reverse to be true though.

Unlike the 80s, UM isn't the only team anymore with speed. Or does last year's Louisville game not bring back any memories of teams with speed and power? And, wasn't that against this same heralded defense?

Win or lose, I think your evaluation of the Sooners will improve, at least if you're honest it will.

Eh, arial, aerial, shmerial. I work 2 full-time jobs and I haven't slept in 40 hours, so sue me for making a typo that I didn't catch. At least I don't normally spell in monosyllable words.

Texassooner, the louisville game was a different team compare to the one we have now. This one has purpose, and know what it needs to do. Where in the past, they used to fold when it came down to competition. Now we have starters that earnd their spot. Not because they think they deserve it, but because they earnd it.
We also have a different head coach, which demands perfection. Unlike the one we had before. CANES,CANES,CANES!!!!!!

Hey, one more thing, TS. Why don't you get some sleep now because after the game you won't be able to sleep. You will be crying in the little wagon with not wheels.

TexasSooner, we went up 7-0 on Louisville and was about 2 go up 14-0 when Charlie Jones fumbled on his way in the end zone, not 2 mention we missed 2 straight field goals after that, all in the first quarter so dont get it twisted. This team had a bad habbit of giving up over the past 2 seasons once they got down by 2 or more points because they had no leader on or off the field (coach or qb) but things will be a lot better now cause these kids know if they dont perform their best they may never see the field again. Plus you know as well as we do that if we had a proven qb over the past 4 seasons we would'nt even be having this conversation.

Damn, im so pumped... lets beat that ass

I think our D should go out and play a little smash mouth football and level the playing surface a bit. Get the Homies on their heels so there's not so much pressure on the offense. Go Canes...

I'd like to believe that we were holding back on offense, but I doubt the dropped passes were on purpose.

Google search is awesome. You should try it sometime, Manny.

Shields went over 100 yards in the Bowl game last year vs. Nevada.


hey Rusty98UM, didn't you upload the youtube video seen 'round the world?

We have not seen “it” all yet in the Marshall game. Where was Coop lined up in the slot? Where were JJ and Coop in the backfield together? And where was Sam Shields speed? Not to mention the play action and bootlegs we saw a bit of. Oklahoma is a great team and it will be a tough game, but The U is not getting much respect in the media. Stoops and his players will be ready, but so is Boss Cane, Nix and his players. The Miami D is not going to give up a lot of rushing yards. Its gonna be a good game!

Can Miami put up another +200 yards rushing? Can the U put up +100 yards passing? How about +200 yards? Can the NINE “U” D-Line “starters” wear out the Sooner O-line in a close game? Can Miami get more sacks this week than last? Remember, these two defensive ends are SICK, so will Moncur or Campbell get more sacks this week – pick your poison.

Is Oklahoma gonna sell out defending the run? Can Kirby and his receivers finally have the break out game we have all been waiting for? Miami will have to pass this week or the run won’t be there. Can they do it?

We have not seen anything yet with Marshall – I think we will this week.

Warm up the grill and chill the beers – its gonna be a GREAT game to watch.

Oh yeah... Kicking game is gonna hurt if it turns into a field position game. Ouch!

http://www.insidetheu.com/images/newspics/447040683RobertMarve3.jpg in uniform, Robert Marve flings it ...

No sellout on the run, Oklahoma will probably play 90% straight up in run situations. Because they can.

Nebraska put up over 600 yards on Nevada last week.

http://photos-165.ak.facebook.com/ip002/v72/113/82/10601674/n10601674_32474165_6358.jpg Kirby's fiancee

i dint think that UM can rely only on their speed. sooners will have that. this kis coming down to execution! who can do it.

report: in addition to dumping tickets, fui small potatoes opens the Orange Bowl ... by closing 1/2 the Orange Bowl. NO INTEREST

http://blogs.trb.com/sports/college/fau/blog/ sunsentinel's ted hutton (sep 5): "... FIU post attendances of 10,000-plus last season when it was more like 3,000 in the stands." LIARS

hey green, I doubt UM packed the orange bowl every week 4-5 years into their existence...largely doubt it because we still don't do that.

BTW, good catch Kirby!

The Sooners are a very good team and Stoops rarely ever gets outcoached. The Sooners have a freshman QB who can be rattled, and will be by Moncur and Calais. However, I think their defense is very solid.

This is going to be a very, very good game. But only if the Miami offense can move the ball a bit more convincingly. I don't doubt they'll be ready though. They need to be able to pass for 150 yards minimum, since OU will be gearing for the run here. If ya see the Sooners cheating up those safety, you've got to go playaction.

I'll stick my neck out and say that with a game where points are at a premium, The U will barely come out on top, because I just think the Oklahoma QB has never seen a defence like ours, and same that applies for us, applies for them, they won't be able to run he ball either.

hey green, I doubt UM packed the orange bowl every week 4-5 years into their existence Posted by: MancuniasRedArmy | September 06, 2007 at 10:29 AM that was then, this is now ...

fui small potatoes lies about attendance to appear larger and meet division 1 requirements. the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth ...

7-6 and going through the transition period of a new (somewhat) coaching staff usually results in a wait and see attitude from the media.

I think the Sooners will end up being a lot better than last year but it remains to be seen against better competition. I want Miami as confident as possible because I want the the Sooners to be tested.

Everyone is optimistic at this time of year (well, not Mich) and especially with a new coach. The Miami defense is outstanding but I think the offense might be more of a liability than an asset on Saturday. North Texas is bad but Oklahoma and Sam Bradford treated them as such. Plenty of other teams that didn't take care of their business as expected.

Holding back the playbook is one thing, execution is another and it should be a concern with Freeman. 9-21 for less than 100 yards. 2 of 8 on 3rd down conversions. 3 TD drives TOTALED about 55 yards and came off INTs. Miami has a nice pair of RBs but very few teams run on Oklahoma, especially without a passing game to respect.

Miami's defense is outstanding but Oklahoma's is pretty strong and fast as well and Bradford goes against them every day in practice. It will be a test for sure but the North Texas defense is not his main reference point for defensive speed.

Oklahoma appears to be a complete team with enough talent to help a young QB. Miami is strong on defense and very suspect on offense. I don't see Freeman making a giant leap of improvement in the passing game in Norman in front of a hostile crowd that will be a lot louder than usual because of the memories of those 80s games. Freeman makes more mistakes than plays and OU pulls away late 23-10.

http://www.tulsaworld.com/sports/article.aspx?articleID=070905_2_B1_hNewH08150 world's guerin emig: "The Miami Hurricanes whipped Marshall in their first game under new football coach Randy Shannon last Saturday, then stuck around the Orange Bowl field. Not to taunt, however. Or to prance or preen or strike any look-at-me poses that have become as much a trademark of Miami football as success. No, this time the Hurricanes sang their alma mater." don't know 'bout U ... but I miss those Canes. IN YOUR FACE

green no1 has questioned the fact that UM has more fans in the stands than fiu but fiu fan base is growing slowly but surely. i dont know where or why you decidedto bring FIU into it. i think you have a bigger task than to worry about FIU right now.. lol it actually sounds like your begining to look past OK for FIU lol i know your not but it just sounds like it

green no1 has questioned the fact that UM has more fans in the stands than fiu but fiu fan base is growing slowly but surely. Posted by: CJ | September 06, 2007 at 11:24 AM GLACIAL

I'm tired of hearing about OU's speed. Everyone says they have great team speed these days because it's the popular thing to say when you're winning (makes you sound intelligent). Miami made it popular, and noone else knows what team speed is until they run into the Canes (at least, the in shape, non-Coker Canes). South Florida players DEFINE speed, everyone else just seems fast because they're running by slow people.

I'm also tired of hearing about how great OU and Stoops are. If Miami had gotten into the title game over FSU that year (as we should have, OU would never have won that title, and Miami would have 3 in a row instead of 2 (that's right...TWO!). OU has done nothing but get mauled in championship games since. Stoops gets outcoached all the time, he just kept beating good Texas teams. He doesn't even do that anymore.

http://wqam.com/ QAM airs Hurricane Hotline 7p-9p tonight!

How about this UM scores in all facets of the game. Cooper gets his first TD on a punt return. The defense swarms Bradford into throwing interceptions and scores on one of them. The offense comes to life on the Oklahoma defense and appears dominant.
FINAL SCORE: Miami 24 Oklahoma 13
How is that for a prediction? GO CANES!!!!!!!!!!

nick i'd say that would be incredible. id love to see it

I posted this the other day and thought it should be re-posted. Sorry Manny, one step ahead:

I am predicting that you will see a COMPLETELY different team and offense against OU. I have gone on record and predicted an OU win and I am not sure the Canes can pull of the upset (ouch!). The Canes CAN win but they will have to be flawless in all three phases of the game to win in Norman. It will be interesting to see how the game plays out.

Here are my best guesses for the game:

1. Don't be surprised if you see a completely offense against OU that will include different personnel groupings and formations than the Canes used against The Herd:

A. Look for Coop and JJ to both line up in the backfield at the same time.
B. Watch for Kyle and Kirby to both be in the game at the same time.
C. Look for Coop to line up in the backfield and then split out wide for a four wide set.
D. Look for JJ or Coop to take a direct snap with Kirby split out wide.
E. Look for one WR with two TE's and a FB/RB set.

2. You will see a lot more play action and passes to the RB's and TEs. Look for a lot of misdirection, draws, screens and throw backs to the weak side to take advantage of OU's (over)pursuit and to counter their team speed.

3. Look for Kirby to throw DEEP early and often. Look for LL, DJ and SS to actually catch the ball and score on a 40+ yard play.

Posted by: SOUP | September 04, 2007 at 09:28 AM


No one but Miami fans even bring up the 2000 season and how they think they should have played OU. Miami lost to a weaker team than FSU (that's all that matters, not that the U beat FSU). Miami didn't deserve to be there.

How many years do we hear the wanna-be's say "We would have beaten (insert National Champion here) if we had played them". Get over it. OU was undefeated in 2000 and found a way to win every game. Miami did not.

I'm excited about this Saturday and think it'll be a great game. Rankings mean nothing at this stage, but you have to respect the Miami and OU talent. Both are stacked and it will come down to a few big plays. I'm biased and think OU will pull it out due to it being a home game for us and that your coach is in his first year (it takes time for the players to completely adjust to new systems).

I would pick execution and no surprise over surprises ANY day. A play here or there sure, but it is not like Bob Stoops or Venebles (their DC, not going to look up the spelling), is going to go "Darn you can do THAT with the WR!" Rich Olson promised us the same BS, that the Spring Game was "vanilla," and my favorite had to be the year Bobby was bringing the Rainbow Offense down to Miami in 2004! How did that go.

Execution over surprise for me any day of the week, and the misses in the game were fundamental. I think Kirby will be fine, and of course we are the greatest team that has ever lived, but get cute with OU and execute poorly, and we will get killed.

No one but Miami fans even bring up the 2000 season and how they think they should have played OU. Miami lost to a weaker team than FSU (that's all that matters, not that the U beat FSU). Miami didn't deserve to be there.

THAT IS TOTALLY WRONG. Everynoe I know in football agreed Miami should have been there. Bobby Bowden all but said it. SteveS sure did. I think the reality is that it doesn't matter, OU DESERVED EVERY PIECE OF THAT TITLE AND I AGREE WITH THAT. We have a dumb system no doubt, and it is not fair, worse on teams like Auburn than it was on us, but when a major program goes through a tough conference and wins all their games... .

Problem for me is what about Rutgers? Do you send undefeated Rutgers over say one-loss UF this year? And please don't tell me that it is all about the record because that is TOTALLY UNFAIR to the teams like OU and Miami that play tough games. I would send a one loss UF or a one loss Miami over Rutgers, but it would be VERY interesting to say that least.

Taht said, FSU should not ahve been in the OB ni 2000, but OU won the game and that is that. I never argued that OU did not deserve that title.

http://hurricanesports.cstv.com/genrel/090507aab.html "Hurricane Sports Properties" extends rights deal with Learfield Sports and ISP Sports through 2012 ...

So, Nebraska put 600+ yards over Nevada. Who cares? Miami was not able to use their speed on that game because it was snowing, and the grass was wet. Both teams were pretty much even because of it. Nevada's team this year is not the same as last year.

http://graphics.fansonly.com/photos/schools/mifl/sports/genrel/auto_widephoto/1341399.jpeg Hurricane Sports Properties

I don't want to STOOP to their level, I just want to play this game SOONER rather than later so we all know who was right and wrong. UM wins 28-20.

TexasSooner, You in Texas but a fan of the Sooners and then you post in a Canes blog.

You know you should just change your handle to Canesooner:)

Come on the dark side and blog with the best!!!

I'm not saying that OU didn't deserve their 2000 title. They did. They went undefeated and won the title game, so that's it. Congrats. I AM saying that they wouldn't have deserved it after the whooping that 2000 UM team would have put on them had they gotten to play against Oklahoma like they deserved. That's all. And if you take that 2000 title away, the program doesn't look nearly as impressive this decade with it's handful of Big 12 titles (zzzzzzzzzzzzz), butt-kickings in title games and a bowl loss to Boise State.

I hope Miami does pass often. OU's secondary is the strength of the defense and is ranked the #1 secondary in the nation by several publications.

Bradford plays against OU's D every day and the speed of the 2 D's is similar. In his last scrimmage against the first team D, he threw for 4 TDs, in large part because OU's WRs & TEs are really good.

OU's run game is stellar with 5 RBs with distinctly different running styles. That kind of depth should provide fresh legs for the whole game at the RB position.

And even if all things are equal between the offenses and defenses, OU should have a distinct edge with special teams. The blocking, tackling, and kicking on OU's ST is one of the best around, although I haven't seen anything above average in returns yet this year (or last).

Then you have coaching experience and home field to take into consideration, at least to some degree. I, personally, have a HUGE amount of respect for Miami, and I think ALL Sooner fans do, whether they admit it or not. But I do like OU in this game.

This game WILL be decided by factors like field position, execution, and turnovers. I've put a lot of thought into this, and my prediction for the game is:

OU - 24
UM - 20

Boomer Sooner!

OU has a great team and great football program with rich tradition. Miami does as well. There's no need for us true Canes' fans to come on here bad-mouthin' other programs. Let's let the play on the field do our talkin'.


hey matt, get ready for our double-secret game plan ; )

Oklahoma - 31
Miami - 3

Much like the Louisville beat down from last year.

hey gatorbait!, shouldn't you worry 'bout fu's titanic tussle with (helen of) troy?

Its been 22 years Gayturd Bait...22 years.

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