Oklahoma St. 16, Oklahoma 13

Nov. 24, 2001 at 9:19 PM
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NORMAN, Okla., Nov. 24 (UPI) -- A 14-yard touchdown pass from freshman Josh Fields to Rashaun Woods with 1:36 remaining Saturday night allowed Oklahoma State to pull off a stunning 16-13 victory over No. 4 Oklahoma that knocked the Sooners out of the national championship race and sent another shockwave through college football.

Prior to the holiday weekend, it seemed almost certain that Nebraska and defending national champion Oklahoma would meet next Saturday in the Big 12 Conference title contest with the winner of that game likely earning a chance to play for the NCAA crown.

But Nebraska was shocked by Colorado on Friday, 62-36, and Oklahoma State then put on an amazing defensive effort and ended the Sooners' 19-game home winning streak.

Those results left Colorado and Texas as the teams in the Big 12 championship game with the Longhorns suddenly alive in the national title hunt. Nebraska and Oklahoma began the weekend as the Nos. 1 and 3 teams in the Bowl Championship Series ratings.

"I don't think we came into this game unprepared and looking ahead to next week," Sooners coach Bob Stoops said. "The team was outplayed and I was outcoached. That's really the only excuse I have for this loss."

Oklahoma fell to 10-2, its other loss having come against Nebraska. The Sooners' lack of offensive production has been a concern for the team's coaches late in the season and their inability to move the ball against Oklahoma State eventually cost them Saturday.

Nevertheless, the Cowboys had been unable to make any dramatic strides against Oklahoma's talented defense until the final minutes, when Fields directed the winning touchdown drive.

Fields came into the game early as a replacement for Aso Pogi and then came back again in the fourth quarter after suffering a thumb injury. He hit Woods with a throw of 31 yards to get the drive going and the Cowboys eventually moved to the Oklahoma 14.

From there, on first down, Fields lofted a pass to the left side of the end zone and Woods outjumped Derrick Strait to grab the ball. Woods barely got one foot inbounds as he came down, stunning the Oklahoma home crowd.

"They just went up and made a great play," Stoops said. "That's why you play the game. It's a chance to let players make plays and see if you can do it. We've come up with a great number of big plays and we didn't tonight."

The Cowboys nearly halted the Sooners' eventual national championship run last November in Stillwater before losing, 12-7. This season, Oklahoma State (4-7, 2-6 Big 12 South) had far more to celebrate, posting its first win over a ranked team since a 42-23 decision over Mississippi State in 1998.

The Cowboys closed their first season under coach Les Miles with back-to-back wins that followed a five-game slide.

"They are a good football team. They finally got an opportunity to show someone else," Miles said.

Oklahoma State was in position to win with the help of Luke Phillips, who kicked field goals of 26 and 52 yards in the second quarter and again from 52 yards in fourth.

Quentin Griffin of Oklahoma opened the scoring with an eight-yard run early in the second quarter after the Sooners took over deep in the Cowboys' end of the field on a turnover. Tim Duncan kicked field goals of 23 yards in the second quarter and 22 yards in the fourth.

After Woods caught the winning pass, Oklahoma took over inside its own 20 and four straight passes by Nate Hybl were incomplete.

Oklahoma State was unable to run out the clock and the Sooners wound up with 16 seconds remaining as they took over at their own 26. But Hybl was intercepted on first down by Marcus Jones.

Fields completed 19 of 38 passes for 231 yards and was intercepted once while the Cowboys came up with three interceptions against Hybl.

The Oklahoma home winning streak had been the second-longest current one in the country next to Nebraska's 21. Oklahoma last home loss was to Colorado in 1998, the year before coach Stoops arrived.

"This was my last game here and it just kills me," said Oklahoma receiver Josh Norman. "We didn't lose at home in three years and now to lose this one, it's just a tough way to end the regular season."

An inability to run the ball again doomed the Sooners, who entered the game ranked 79th nationally in rushing offense and had zero net yards on 27 carries.

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