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BIG 12

Oklahoma Wrecks Texas Tech

November 24, 2002|From Associated Press

Oklahoma left no doubt about which team is the best in the Big 12 South.

The fourth-ranked Sooners controlled the ball with Quentin Griffin and harassed Kliff Kingsbury with its defense from start to finish in Saturday night's 60-15 victory over 24th-ranked Texas Tech at Norman, Okla.

Griffin ran for 207 yards and three touchdowns -- his seventh consecutive 100-yard game and third 200-yard game of the season -- as Oklahoma (10-1, 6-1 in conference) won the South Division title.

Kingsbury came in averaging 371 yards passing, but he completed only 15 of 35 passes for a season-low 187 yards -- 67 of those on a fourth-quarter touchdown pass. Oklahoma's defense forced two safeties, sacked Kingsbury six times and intercepted two of his passes.

"Everyone's talked for three weeks about how they've scored 50, 60 points, and we hold them to one touchdown, really a meaningless one at the end of the game," Oklahoma Coach Bob Stoops said. "Just another spectacular performance by the defense."

The Sooners finish the regular season next Saturday against Oklahoma State, then play 16th-ranked Colorado for the conference title Dec. 7. Oklahoma beat Colorado, 27-11, on Nov. 2, and the winner of next month's game gets a berth in a bowl championship series game.

Texas Tech (8-5, 5-3) won three successive games to get in position to play for the South title. But the Red Raiders had no answers for Griffin, or Oklahoma's defense, in their worst loss of the season.

"That's the best defense I've seen in four years," Kingsbury said. "They just beat us in all phases of the game."

Oklahoma held Texas Tech to 24 points and nearly 270 yards below its average.

Kingsbury's worst game this season had been a 268-yard effort in a loss to Colorado on Oct. 26. He is 0-3 against Oklahoma since beating them as a freshman in 1999.

The Red Raiders had 12 yards and no first downs in the first quarter. They crossed midfield only once in the first half and were outgained, 263-64.

Griffin's highlight-reel 62-yard touchdown run on the second possession gave Oklahoma a 14-0 lead and made it clear the Red Raiders were in for a long night.

Kingsbury was sacked in the end zone late in the first quarter, making it 16-0. Kejuan Jones scored on a three-yard run midway through the second quarter, then a holding call against Texas Tech in the end zone resulted in another safety and a 25-0 halftime lead.

Brandon Shelby blocked a punt on Texas Tech's first possession of the third quarter and Will Peoples recovered it in the end zone for a 32-0 lead. Two short touchdown runs by Griffin pushed the lead to 46-0 before Vincent Meeks scored for Texas Tech on a 98-yard kickoff return.

"They played with great tempo early," Texas Tech Coach Mike Leach said. "They didn't really have any secrets. We kind of started playing on our heels and stayed on our heels."

No. 10 Kansas State 38, Missouri 0 -- Darren Sproles ran for 116 yards and a 12-yard touchdown, setting school records for yards rushing and all-purpose yards in a season, to lead the Wildcats (10-2, 6-2) at Columbia, Mo. It was the 10th consecutive loss in the series for Missouri (5-7, 2-6), which did not get past midfield until the fourth quarter.

Missouri quarterback Brad Smith, a redshirt freshman, became the second player in NCAA history to pass for 2,000 yards and rush for 1,000 in a season. Smith began the game needing one yard rushing to join Clemson's Woody Dantzler, who did it last season. Smith had 30 yards rushing in 13 carries and completed seven of 24 passes for 126 yards.

Oklahoma State 63, Baylor 28 -- Josh Fields threw for four touchdowns and ran for another as Oklahoma State qualified for a bowl game by beating Baylor at Stillwater, Okla. Tatum Bell ran for 106 yards and three touchdowns in 14 carries as the Cowboys (6-5, 4-3) beat the Bears (3-9, 1-7) in Baylor Coach Kevin Steele's final game.

Rashaun Woods caught seven passes for 134 yards and two touchdowns. He set conference and school records for yards receiving in a season and a school mark for catches in a season.

Connecticut 37, Iowa State 20 -- Dan Orlovsky threw three touchdown passes, freshman Terry Caulley rushed for 191 yards and Maurice Lloyd had two interceptions at Ames, Iowa, as Connecticut earned its biggest victory in Division I-A. Connecticut (6-6) scored 27 consecutive points after trailing, 20-10, to stun a team that had been ranked ninth nationally in mid-October.

Iowa State (7-6) lost five of its last six after a 6-1 start. Quarterback Seneca Wallace completed 19 of 44 passes for 216 yards with four interceptions.

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