Opponents to Watch: Oklahoma

Evan Vieth, Sports Reporter

After a decisive win against West Virginia at home, the Texas Longhorns look to win one of the biggest rivalry games of the year, the Red River Showdown against Oklahoma. Though both teams enter Saturday’s game unranked, they each feature some of the best players in the Big 12. Here are four players to watch from the Oklahoma Sooners:

Eric Gray

Just a year after transferring to Oklahoma from Tennessee, Gray solidified himself as the lead back for the Sooners. Gray has already surpassed his 2021 rushing yards and touchdowns and currently ranks third in the Big 12 in yards with 460 through five games. He excels greatly as a pass catcher and will pressure the inside of the Longhorn’s weaker defensive line.

Marvin Mims

Marvin Mims currently ranks second in the conference with 438 receiving yards, and his 19.9 yards per reception makes the top 20 in the nation. The Frisco product is a top priority for Texas’ defense to shut down. In last year’s Red River Showdown, Mims netted 136 yards and two touchdowns, the latter tying the game in the fourth quarter on a 52-yard pass from now USC quarterback Caleb Williams. A true deep ball threat for a struggling Texas secondary, Mims’ impact will play a key role in Saturday’s matchup.

Anton Harrison

The junior offensive lineman’s protection on the left side is one of the few sure things about the Oklahoma offense. Oklahoma’s offense is still top 15 in the nation in rushing despite two straight losses, and Harrison’s a major contributor to that. Harrison will likely be put up against sophomore edge rusher Barryn Sorrell, who is sixth in the Big 12 in sacks and provided constant pressure on West Virginia’s JT Daniels last weekend.

David Ugwoegbu

Despite the defensive struggles to start the season, senior linebacker David Ugwoegbu shines through as a bright spot for the Sooners. Ugwoegbu leads Oklahoma with 44 tackles, 25 of which come from its last two games against Kansas State and TCU. Ugwoegbu, with tackling as a strong suit, improved nearly every game so far. Ugwoegbu is very similar to Texas’ DeMarvion Overshown, as both are senior linebackers who contribute positively on the field and in the locker room.