NORMAN, Okla. (AP) -- For Jason White and No. 2 Oklahoma, it was
just like the good old days -- before those two painful losses that
ruined last season.
White was 21-for-31 for 238 yards and three touchdowns and the
Sooners ended their first two-game losing streak since 1999 with a
40-24 victory over Bowling Green in their opener Saturday.
The Sooners' last two games were losses in the Big 12
championship and the Sugar Bowl.
"It felt like picking up from a long time ago," White said.
"I think we have a totally different attitude this year. This
year's a different team, different players -- a few different
players -- and we have a different attitude this year."
Kejuan Jones rushed for a career-high 148 yards for the Sooners.
"It's always good to win," coach Bob Stoops said, "but there
was no Hokey Pokey going on. Aw, geez, we were able to win. How
Adrian Peterson, the Sooners' top-rated high-school recruit,
flashed brilliance with a 35-yard touchdown run and finished with
100 yards on 16 carries. But he also fumbled out of bounds on two
of his first six carries.
With White recovered from knee surgery and a broken bone in his
left foot, Oklahoma's offense was able to operate frequently with
the quarterback under center instead of in the shotgun. The
Sooners' offensive line -- which returned all five starters from
last season -- opened huge holes for Jones to run through and
prevented White from being sacked.
"Those guys were opening up holes that anybody could've run
through," Jones said. "They were just flying off that ball and
they did a great job blocking for me."
The oft-injured White was hit hard only twice -- on a 2-yard run
on a busted play to end the first quarter and following an
incomplete pass in the third quarter. He even pulled the ball down
and ran 6 yards for a first down early in the fourth quarter.
"I definitely felt more mobile this year," White said.
White, the first Heisman Trophy winner to return since BYU's Ty
Detmer in 1991, was brilliant early. He went 12-for-15 in the first
half and one incompletion hit receiver Brandon Jones in the hands.
After Charles Sharon's second dazzling touchdown catch of the
game -- a leaping grab during which he landed one knee in bounds --
brought the Falcons within 37-17, White threw an interception that
Keon Newson returned 28 yards for a touchdown to give Bowling Green
a chance. The Falcons were down 37-24 early in the fourth quarter.
The Sooners responded with a 17-play, 73-yard drive that ate
nearly 9 minutes off the clock and ended with Trey DiCarlo's second
field goal of the game and doused Bowling Green's hopes for a
"There was really no pressure on us at any time," Sooners
center Vince Carter said. "We knew that prior to the interception
they hadn't stopped us. We pretty much were stopping ourselves. We
just knew that if we went out on the field and continued to play
aggressively, we would score points."
Newson also caused a turnover that put Bowling Green in position
for its first touchdown. Three plays after the fumble, Sharon
outjumped Antonio Perkins at the goal line for an 18-yard touchdown
catch that tied the game at 7.
Kejuan Jones put the Sooners ahead for good on their next
possession with an 11-yard TD run.
"Their running backs were hard to tackle," Bowling Green coach
Gregg Brandon said. "We had to swarm to tackle those guys. It's
tough to sustain that intensity for four quarters.
"I think that's what got us -- them running the ball pretty
Mark Clayton, a second team All-American last season, found
himself wide open on both touchdown catches. In the first quarter,
he ran away from linebacker Daniel Sayles as White lobbed a 6-yard
pass to the back right corner of the end zone for the score. In the
second quarter, Clayton made a sharp right turn and caught White's
9-yard pass in the front of the end zone to put Oklahoma up 21-10.
White also connected with a diving Will Peoples for a 24-yard
scoring pass in the third quarter that made it 30-10.
Sean Suisham hit a career-long 47-yard field goal in the second
quarter for Bowling Green.
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