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Patrick picks up Peterson's slack; Sooners stomp Buffs

NORMAN, Okla. (AP) -- Allen Patrick didn't think he needed a pep
talk from the record-setting running back he was replacing. He got
one anyway.

After a brief encounter with Adrian Peterson right before
kickoff, Patrick ran for 110 yards and a fourth-quarter touchdown
to lead No. 20 Oklahoma to a 24-3 win Saturday night against
Colorado.

"When I was going out there on the field, I just had my mind
set to go out there and give punishment, to let them know I'm on
the field, to let me go out there and get my name known," Patrick
said. "I was going out there trying to make things happen."

Peterson, who broke his collarbone last week against Iowa State,
watched the game from the sidelines in a gray hooded sweat shirt
and red cap. After the coin toss, he and Patrick spoke near
midfield.

"He pretty much knows I can run the ball. He was just telling
me to go out and get it, just keep grinding until I get it,"
Patrick said. "I finally got it for him."

In his first start, Patrick surpassed his career-high for
carries early in the third quarter and finished with 35 rushes --
more than Peterson had in a game this season.

"It was different, but I was definitely satisfied with what
Allen was doing out there," Sooners quarterback Paul Thompson
said.

Oklahoma relied on Patrick from the start. He carried seven
times for 36 yards on the Sooners' first scoring drive, setting up
Thompson's 3-yard TD pass that Manuel Johnson caught with one foot
inside the left edge of the end zone.

"He's coming back and he wants the ball more and more,"
Thompson said of Patrick. "Even though he hasn't been in that
position and he's not a star, he definitely has a role of a leader
of this offense, coming back to the huddle, telling guys, 'Come on,
let's go! Keep it rolling.' He's going to be a big part of this
offense."

Patrick got periodic advice from Peterson. The nation's No. 2
rusher and 2004 Heisman Trophy runner-up took part in Oklahoma
huddles during timeouts and was almost always among the front row
of Sooners on the sidelines.

Mainly, Patrick said, Peterson told him to run toward openings
outside instead of continuously slamming the ball inside.

Patrick ended up as the first player to run for more than 100
yards this season against Colorado (1-7, 1-3 Big 12), which entered
with the nation's No. 9 defense against the run.

"He has all the confidence in the world, and I have all the
confidence in him," Thompson said. "He was making some plays for
us."

Patrick got the ball on seven straight plays as Oklahoma ran out
most of the final 6:13. He finally got a rest after converting a
fourth-and-inches with 2½ minutes left. Freshman Chris Brown took
over and scored on a 4-yard run with 17 seconds remaining.

"Our focus is on this team. You're definitely aware that
Adrian's not back there, but we're not down about that," Thompson
said. "We're not looking to see if we can overcome that."

The Sooners (5-2, 2-1) got all four of their scores going with
the wind, and coach Bob Stoops even called two timeouts to keep the
wind at Oklahoma's back before Garrett Hartley's 46-yard field goal
made it 10-0 at the end of the first quarter.

"The conditions weren't the best," Stoops said. "The gusts of
wind that were down there were really tough."

Colorado couldn't do much on offense, no matter which way the
wind was blowing. The Buffaloes managed only two first downs on
their first nine possessions, and Bernard Jackson didn't complete
his second pass until the fourth quarter.

He finished 3-for-14 for 39 yards with one interception, and
Colorado had a season-low 113 yards of total offense.

"I was not vocal enough. I'll take the blame for this game,"
said Jackson.

The Buffaloes avoided their first shutout in 18 years on Mason
Crosby's 39-yard field goal, a line drive into the wind, with 6:13
to play.

Crosby missed a 56-yard field-goal attempt wide left that would
have pulled Colorado within 10-3 in the second quarter, and Zach
Latimer intercepted a tipped pass by Jackson after the Buffaloes
had taken possession in Oklahoma territory on Jordan Dizon's fumble
recovery.

The loss ended any remaining bowl hopes for Colorado, which
halted a 10-game losing streak with a win against Texas Tech last
week. The Buffaloes are winless in their last 13 games against
ranked opponents.

Stoops said he expected starting right tackle Branndon Braxton
to miss the rest of the season after breaking his leg in the third
quarter.