Stoops wants less mistakes from OU QBs

NORMAN, Okla. – As their competition continues, Blake Bell, Kendal Thompson and Trevor Knight will be evaluated by how many plays they make during Oklahoma’s spring game Saturday.

Coach Bob Stoops, however, will be most focused on those plays the quarterbacks don’t make.

“What all of them have to learn to do -- not have the really bad play that changes the game,” Stoops said after Tuesday’s workout. “You can't just gamble and try to make the big play and make the bad one.”

If Stoops has any complaint with the quarterbacks so far this spring, it’s been their penchant for the big mistake trying to convert the big play.

“They’re doing a pretty good job, but it seems like every day or scrimmage or team sessions there will be one or two plays where, ‘Ah, you better reevaluate that one.’ And it’s been all of them,” Stoops said. “I’m not sitting here saying they’re doing a really bad job. They’re doing a really good job.

“But some of those plays can be game changers, and you can't make them and gamble with the ball.”

During Sunday’s closed scrimmage, all three quarterbacks marched the offense down the field. Too many drives, however, were stalled out by sacks. Interceptions ended others. And that was with the quarterbacks being off limits to contact.

“They know they're not going to being tackled -- so they'll hold onto the ball a little longer, then let something go at the end and get a touchdown,” Stoops said. “But in reality they would have gotten hit in the mouth, the ball would've went straight up in the air and (the defense) would been running it back.

By all accounts, no one has pulled away in the quarterback battle this spring. All three have played well at times. In some cases, really well.

But the quarterback that ultimately secures the starting job figures to be the one that commits the fewest errors. On Saturday -- and beyond.

“There's enough good players around them that we'll be successful moving the football,” Stoops said, “if you trust them and don't gamble with the football.”