Country Roads chats about this weekend's Mountaineers-Sooners game with the Oklahoma blog Crimson and Cream Machine.
Time for the weekly Q&A. Despite both teams underachieving, the Oklahoma blog Crimson and Cream Machine took some time to chat about Saturday's game with us and they actually think this could be a trap for the Sooners. Let's hope they're right.
Country Roads: Compared with expectations, how are your fans feeling about the Sooners' season so far? Ranked #12 and with 2 losses seems sub-par for OU, but those losses are to 2 of the top 3 teams in the country. Is there a sense that you've underachieved so far? If so, are the natives getting restless that Bob Stoops is letting the program stagnate? Or is a national championship and 2 other title game appearances with a slew of BCS bowls enough for him to be around until he totally falls off the map?
Crimson and Cream Machine: Make no mistake about it, this season has been a complete failure compared to preseason standards. Oklahoma fans expected the Sooners to at least be in the hunt for the Big 12 championship, with this game being a deciding factor. Now, not only are they out of the BCS championship picture, but they are also having to sit on the sidelines and watch Kansas State run through the conference.
Oklahoma fans only want championships and there's never a sell-able excuse for anything less. There's no reasoning or reckoning for a failed football campaign and fans make no bones about it whatsoever. That said, Stoops isn't going anywhere. No coach wins every game and lives up to every expectation. Bob Stoops writes his own ticket in Norman and that won't change until he says it does.
CR: How good a quarterback is Landry Jones? He's going to break all kinds of records, but it seems like he's little more than Ken Dorsey in that he's a solid player whose unprecedented success is largely the product of the system he plays in and the immense talent that surrounds him. What will his legacy be in retrospect when the calendar turns 2020?
CCM: Landry Jones is going to be remembered as the greatest quarterback in Oklahoma football history...who never did anything. He's a great person and a successful quarterback, he's just not the leader that was expected. He has the most wins of any quarterback in Sooner football history and has rewritten the record book. At times he looks incredibly gifted and a sure hero at the next level of football, and at times he's looks like an unconfident freshman who doesn't know that the other team has a position on the defense known as the safety. There lies the run with a lot of OU fans. They expected Jones to outgrow those issues in four years as a starter.
I honestly think that most people are too hard on the kid. He hasn't been perfect but he's also seen a ton of success as well.
CR: Unlike most of the teams in the Big 12, WVU and the Sooners actually have some relatively recent history, with OU being the victim of 2 of probably the top 10 wins in WVU history (1982 in Norman and the 2008 Fiesta Bowl). While this season obviously has taken a turn for the worse for our beloved Mountaineers, what is the general consensus among Oklahoma fans about the West Virginia program?
CCM: Our general thought is that four consecutive losses by the Mountaineers, makes them extremely dangerous. West Virginia comes across as a desperate team that is loaded with offensive talent. Their backs are clearly against the wall and a win on Saturday could turn things back in the right direction. West Virginia has three games left to become bowl eligible and enhance their position.
On the road, at night, in Morgantown, against a desperate team, sounds like a pretty scary proposition to me.
CR: What can WVU fans expect to find in terms of Sooner fans traveling to Morgantown this weekend? The game has lost most, if not all of its luster, but Mountaineer Field at night is still a pretty cool venue, and would be an entirely new experience for all Big 12 fans. Will Morgantown be overrun with Crimson? And what reputation do you all have in terms of fan interaction? Everyone I met at the Fiesta Bowl was fantastic, but bowl games seem to draw out everyone's friendliest behavior. Except Georgia fans, those guys were assholes.
CCM: For the most part, Oklahoma fans are known as pretty friendly and football savvy. Every fan base has, "those guys" but most people walk away from an interaction or tailgate with a pretty good impression. The game has lost its luster (I tabbed it as the Big 12 championship game back in September) but because it is OU's first ever trip to Morgantown it will draw Oklahoma fans.
CR: Ah, yes, the prediction portion of our program. You guys are probably a bunch of homers who will predict Oklahoma to win anyway, so let's have some fun. Do you cover the 10.5 points Vegas is giving WVU? And where's your money on the over/under of 73?
CCM: Of course I'm picking Oklahoma to win! You guys wouldn't expect anything different of me though, would you? I wouldn't pick Oklahoma to cover the spread and would absolutely bet the over in this game.
Thanks again to the guys at Crimson and Cream Machine for answering our questions. Be sure to stop over there for more info on the Sooners, my answers to their questions, and general funsmanship.