Demarco Murray is set to play in the final Bedlam game of his Sooner career. The senior running back has already broken the school record for touchdowns in a career passing 1969 Heisman Trophy winner Steve Owens earlier this season. Murray talked this week about his final Bedlam game, a tough OSU defense and his development as a player throughout his final season in Norman.
Demarco, talk about the different ways the coaches have found to get you the ball? It has to be enjoyable for a guy like you. Yeah, it is. Coach Wilson does a great job of getting us playmakers the ball and letting us do what we can. It feels good to get the ball in space and not (have to) run in between the tackles every single time that I get it. Our line does a great job blocking and Landry does a great job of picking and choosing where the ball goes. We always have a good game plan going into the game.
Is it a message sent to you and the rest of the team, when coach talks about the fact that you guys have played for a chance at the Big 12 championship in nine of the past 11 years? Yeah, Coach Stoops has talked about it. We've put ourselves in a good position to make it to the Big 12, like we've done in the past couple of years. But OSU has put themselves in the same spot, so it will be a good game. Its bedlam, it's going to be a hard-fought game. They have a lot riding on the line and so do we.
For a guy who has been here as long as you have, how amped are you to play in your final bedlam game? It hasn't really hit me yet. I don't get too excited during the week. It takes me till about Saturday just to get going. I'm relaxed, I'm focused but at the same time I'm level headed. I'm mentally ready as well as physically ready. But we have a long time before this game.
Were you surprised at how fast Roy Finch bounced back after that lick on Saturday? No, I'm not surprised.
What do you think of the new 'diamond' formation you guys unveiled on Saturday? Yeah, I enjoy it. It gives us a little misdirection in not letting them focus on just one guy in the backfield. It spreads it out a little bit more. It's a good little concept that Coach Wilson came up with. It's been working well for us the last game we tried it, so hopefully we'll continue to do it.
You've had a chance to look at their defense, break it down for us? Their line-backing corps is really good as well as their secondary. They play smart and hard for the most part. They're a good team that gets after it, they try to start fast by hitting you in the mouth. We're going to have to do a great job on both lines of scrimmages. We have to control the run on the defensive side, and for us, we have to get the run going fast. But they're a team that has a lot of pride and they have a ton of schemes to throw at you.
Everybody is expecting a game like the one you guys played in 2008 where you guys combined for 102 points. Do you see that happening again? You never know. Obviously, they're putting up a lot of points. I think, in Big 12 play, we're both putting up about the same amount of points. Hopefully, our defense will be able to shut them down, and hopefully we'll be able to help them out by putting some points on the board. They have a great offense over there and I feel like we have a pretty good one on this side.
I asked Coach Stoops that if he was an NFL general manager, if he would have an eye on you. He said he would because of your versatility. Could the way they've used you play a role in your future? Yeah, the coaches have really given me an opportunity to showcase what I can do. Not only by catching the ball at the perimeter, but by blocking out there and catching some bubble screens. I don't know if they do it for that reason alone, but it has been helping me for the next level. Coach Wilson does a great job of putting me in the right place at the right time to make plays for the team. I have to give a lot of credit to him.
Do you think this team has a new sense about itself since the A&M game? You try to change some things after wins and losses. You have to continue to get better, grow as a team and improve in certain areas. So, you can say that. We've been trying to improve, since week 1, on certain things. We're still trying to improve, now, in week 11. We're still trying to find ourselves , we're still growing and we're still looking to make plays out there. We have to continue to prepare like we've been preparing. We've been a great practice team since I've been here and this has been the best that I've been a part of. As long as we continue to do that, we have a great chance to win on Saturday.
With that being said, are you guys playing your best ball right now? Yeah, but you can always get better though. For instance, last week, we didn't play in the second half like we should have. We definitely left some points out there, we didn't come up in the red zone. We need to continue to pick six points up, when we're down there, instead of three.