With all that Baker Mayfield and the Sooners’ passing attack will bring to the table in 2016 that warrants notice, no opposing defensive coordinator should look past the Sooner run game.
The backfield is headlined by Samaje Perine and Joe Mixon.
Some have called them Thunder and Lightning. Other big time Dynamic Duo-type names come to mind.
Their coach might just call them the best.
On Tuesday, Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops gave that response to a reporter at the Big 12 Football Media Days who asked him if this was as good a 1-2 combination at running back as he had coached in 18 years with the Sooners.
“It’s fair to say, ‘Yes. Absolutely,’” Stoops said. “These guys are such all-around players. They’re amazing when you watch the coaches’ version of the end zone copy. The holes they pick and the patience they have.
“Then you notice the obvious is the strength and power. And they rarely get caught. They’re usually fast for that size.”
The two combined for 2,102 rushing yards last season in their first time to share the backfield. Perine rushed for 3,062 yards total during 2014 and 2015.
“They have it all. They have great hands and they’re really well-rounded guys that way. They complement each other really well.
“I’m trying to think of other tandems I’ve had. I don’t know that I’ve had two to that quality.”