Sooners Win Epic Bedlam Battle In Overtime
A year ago, the combination of a Bedlam win and the program's first Big 12 championship produced pure elation for Oklahoma State.
Coach Mike Gundy and his Cowboys felt the exact opposite feeling in the rematch.
Landry Jones threw for 500 yards and three touchdowns and Brennan Clay scored on an 18-yard run in overtime to lift No. 14 Oklahoma to a 51-48 win against No. 22 Oklahoma State in the Bedlam rivalry on Saturday.
The Cowboys (7-4, 5-3 Big 12) never trailed until the final, heart-wrenching play and couldn't hold double-digit deficits in either half.
"I don't think there's any question there's a lot of disappointment in the locker room," Gundy said. "I'm very disappointed that we weren't able to finish. We certainly made enough plays to win the game today."
The Sooners (9-2, 7-1) just made one more. In a reversal of last season's postgame scene - when Oklahoma State fans flooded the field and tore down the goalposts - Oklahoma players had a rare home-field celebration after mobbing Clay in the south end zone.
The Cowboys could only trudge off, needing to get past their rivals to get back to the locker room.
"The truth is the better your program gets, the more success you have and the more highly regarded you are, the harder it is to lose," Gundy said.
"In a World Series, a Super Bowl or a state championship game when you lose it's a crushing blow. And the only reason is because you've taken it to another level. For the most part, this program's at a different level."
The victory kept alive Oklahoma's chances for at least a share of the Big 12 championship, and eliminated Oklahoma State's chances of splitting the crown. The Sooners could win it outright by beating TCU next week if No. 7 Kansas State loses to Texas.
Joseph Randle ran for 113 yards and matched his career-high with four touchdowns for Oklahoma State, which settled for Quinn Sharp's 26-yard field goal in overtime.
On the Sooners' second play, Clay got through traffic at the line of scrimmage and then broke through attempted tackles by Daytawion Lowe and Shamiel Gary to score the game-winner.
It was the final home game for Jones, who has won more games at Oklahoma than any quarterback.
"No better way," Jones said. "God blessed me so much tonight to be able to go out like this.
"There's no better way to go out."
With his second straight 500-yard passing game, Jones surpassed Texas Tech's Graham Harrell to become the Big 12's career passing leader. He also became the first Bowl Subdivision quarterback ever to throw for 3,000 yards and 26 touchdowns in four seasons.
He led Oklahoma's first fourth-quarter comeback victory in five years a week earlier, beating West Virginia 50-49 on a pass to Kenny Stills with 24 seconds left, and directed the first 16 plays of the game-tying drive in this one.
Backup quarterback Blake Bell tied it with 4 seconds left on a 4-yard keeper on fourth-and-1 in Oklahoma's short-yardage "Belldozer" package.
"Football's a crazy game," Jones said. "There's up sand downs, good and bad. You have to stay somewhere in that middle ground, realizing who you are and what you're capable of and what type of offense you are.
"When you need a play, just go out and make it."
Jones finished 46 of 71, both school records, with one interception.
Clint Chelf threw for 240 yards with one touchdown and one interception and also ran for 63 yards for the Cowboys, who were trying to win on Owen Field for only the ninth time but couldn't protect an early 14-0 lead or an 11-point edge in the second half.
"There were a lot of big plays. You know there's going to be ups and downs throughout the game, so we were prepared for that," Chelf said. "We just tried to answer every time they did something and they just made one more play than us."
Jalen Saunders tied it at 38 on the second play of the fourth quarter, dodging three early tackles and racing 81 yards up the Sooners' sideline to score on a punt return.
Oklahoma State answered two possessions later, going 77 yards and taking a 45-38 lead on J.W. Walsh's 2-yard keeper with 10:41 remaining. The Cowboys sacked Jones on third down and forced an incomplete pass on fourth down to get the ball back with 7:07 to play, but went three-and-out to give it right back and set up Oklahoma's tying drive.
"It's definitely very hard on us," Oklahoma State defensive lineman Nigel Nicholas said. "I felt like we could come in here and beat any team in the country. Anytime you lose, especially to our rivals, it's a bad feeling."