Oklahoma-Tennessee Preview Capsule
The Associated Press
Sep. 10, 2015
No. 19 Oklahoma (1-0) at No. 23 Tennessee (1-0), 6 p.m. (ESPN)
Line: Oklahoma by 1
Series Record: Oklahoma leads 2-1
WHAT'S AT STAKE
Oklahoma is attempting to beat a Southeastern Conference team for the third straight season. The Sooners ended the 2013 season with a 45-31 Sugar Bowl victory over Alabama and beat Tennessee 34-10 last year. Tennessee is seeking to improve its recent performance against ranked foes. The Volunteers have lost 27 of their last 28 games against Top 25 teams, with the lone win being a 23-21 victory over No. 11 South Carolina in 2013.
Tennessee running game vs. Oklahoma run defense: Tennessee ran for 399 yards in a 59-30 victory over Bowling Green last week, which marked the Volunteers' best single-game rushing total since 1994. Alvin Kamara and Jalen Hurd each went over 100 yards. QB Joshua Dobbs added 89 yards. Oklahoma ranked eighth nationally in run defense last year and allowed 3.1 yards per carry in a season-opening 41-3 triumph over Akron.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Oklahoma: QB Baker Mayfield. The Texas Tech transfer threw for 388 yards and three touchdowns without an interception in his Oklahoma debut last week. Now he faces a Tennessee defense that allowed 433 yards passing against Bowling Green.
Tennessee: Kamara. This Hutchinson (Kansas) Community College transfer ran for 144 yards against Bowling Green, the highest rushing total ever by a player making his Tennessee debut. Kamara's speed and Hurd's power give Tennessee a dynamic running-back tandem.
FACTS & FIGURES
Tennessee says it has sold out the 102,455-seat Neyland Stadium for this game, which means this will be the biggest crowd to ever see Oklahoma play. Currently the largest attendance for an Oklahoma game is 96,009 for the Sooners' 55-17 victory over Texas in 2011. ... Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops owns a 5-4 record against the SEC. That doesn't include his record in games against Missouri and Texas A&M when they still played in the Big 12. ... Tennessee WR Alton "Pig" Howard and defensive backs coach Willie Martinez return for Saturday's game after serving suspensions last week.