Perine runs wild for Oklahoma as QB Mayfield beats former team
Baker Mayfield felt the emotion and the pressure.
For the first time, Oklahoma’s quarterback was facing Texas Tech, the school he left on bad terms two years earlier.
Samaje Perine and Joe Mixon took the heat for him. They combined for 355 yards and six rushing touchdowns to help the 17th-ranked Sooners roll past the Red Raiders 63-27 on Saturday.
Mayfield left Tech after his freshman season in 2013 and had to sit out last year because the school blocked him from playing right away. He stayed calm and completed 15 of 22 passes for 212 yards and two touchdowns.
"Obviously football’s an emotional game, and I used to attend there, it’s just a fact," he said. "So there was little bit coming into it, but I had to look at it like a normal game. That’s the focus we came into it with, and that’s how we had to execute."
Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops talked to Mayfield about his approach before the game.
"The message was, `When you’ve played really well, have the same demeanor. This is no different, you can’t just all of the sudden come out and play differently because of who it is. I don’t think that works for you.’ He understood that. He just had to be in the same mindset he’s been in and operate in the same way. And he trusted that."
Perine hammered out 201 yards and four touchdowns, while Mixon ran for 154 yards and two more scores. The Sooners (6-1, 3-1 Big 12) turned their Air Raid into the ground and pound, rumbling for 405 yards on 57 carries.
"Running the ball, that makes my job easy," Mayfield said. "When you have two horses like that in the backfield and get your offensive line going, it’s great for me. All the credit due to the running game and the big guys up front and the boys making people miss."
Texas Tech quarterback Patrick Mahomes passed for 233 yards and ran for 58, but threw four interceptions. DeAndre Washington ran for 94 yards and a touchdown for the Red Raiders (5-3, 2-3).
"Any time you give up 400 yards rushing and throw four interceptions, there are very few positives to be had," Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury said.
Mayfield walked on and started at Tech two years ago before losing the job. He transferred because he believed Tech had no plans to offer him a scholarship. On Saturday, he helped the Sooners gain 617 total yards.
It was the fourth 200-yard game of Perine’s career, and the most yards for the sophomore since he set the FBS record with 427 last season against Kansas. It was his third career game with at least four rushing touchdowns. He jumped from 25th to 18th on the school’s all-time rushing chart in just his 20th career game.
Oklahoma jumped to a 21-3 lead, but two turnovers became scores for the Red Raiders. Reginald Davis caught a 6-yard touchdown pass from Mahomes, and Washington scored from 13 yards out to bring the Red Raiders back.
Perine rumbled in from 10 yards out to give the Sooners a 28-17 halftime lead. He ran for 132 yards and two touchdowns before the break, and Mixon added 67 yards and two scores.
Mark Andrews caught a 13-yard touchdown pass from Mayfield to make it 35-17. Perine got loose again for a 48-yard run and closed the drive with a six-yard score. The Sooners took a 49-27 lead into the fourth quarter.
Oklahoma cornerback Zack Sanchez left in the first quarter with a right ankle injury. The All-Big 12 selection last year was carted off and returned to the sideline later in the quarter with an air cast. Stoops said it was a sprain rather than a fracture.