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WVU set to challenge Sooner ‘D’

September 7, 2013
By John Wickline Upshur Bureau Chief , The Inter-Mountain

MORGANTOWN - Oklahoma defensive coordinator Mike Stoops is back for his second season in his second term at the helm of the Sooners' defense.

After blanking Louisiana-Monroe in the opener, it appears the Sooners are picking up where Stoops left off during his first tenure with the team.

Stoops guided the OU defense between 1999-2003, ranking in the top 10 nationally almost every season during that time.

"They move fast," West Virginia running back Dreamius Smith said. "They've always been a good team because they move fast to the ball and they're very physical. We know in the back of our minds we have to be more physical than them, give more effort and just go out there and play West Virginia football."

The defense is led by senior defensive back Aaron Colvin, who finds his name on the watch list of nearly every award for which he is eligible. He was named a pre-season All-American and an All-Big 12 pick. He had four tackles and broke up a pass in the season-opening victory.

Corey Nelson led Oklahoma with eight tacks and one sack.

"They're not going to sit on their heels," WVU coach Dana Holgorsen said. "They're going to attack. They're going to apply pressure and play man coverage, which they are very good at.

OU head coach Bob Stoops said he was pleased with his defensive front in the first game.

"Those guys up front were very disruptive and played well," he said.

To prevent those disruptions from happening Saturday night in Norman during a nationally televised game, Holgorsen said his offensive linemen need to show improvement.

"You could tell there was some inexperience with the interior three," Holgorsen said. "We talked to them about consistency, and we talked about growing up and to quit using inexperience as an excuse."

Holgorsen said he has noticed a difference in that Oklahoma defense from a year ago.

"They've made some changes," he said. "They seem a lot more aggressive, a lot more attacking. They're blitzing more."



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