Oklahoma Schedule Preview: Western Carolina Catamounts

The Oklahoma Sooners open up their home slate on Sept. 11 when they host Western Carolina in front of a 100 percent capacity crowd.
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The Oklahoma Sooners welcome the Western Carolina Catamounts in their 2021 home opener on Sept. 11.

After getting a majority of their 2020 season shifted to the spring, the Catamounts posted a 1-8 record in the Southern Confernece.

Not only did the Catamounts struggle to win games in the spring season, they struggled to even be competitive. Losing their eight games by an average of 27.4 points per game, Western Carolina’s only win came against The Citadel, as the Catamounts eked out a 21-14 victory.

Struggling to get much going on offense, Ryan Glover led the way at quarterback for the Catamounts. Seeing action in six games, Glover threw for 832 yards and three touchdowns, while also giving away four interceptions. Glover also struggled with his accuracy, completing just 58.5 percent of his passes.

Oklahoma Sooners 2021 Schedule

  • Sept. 4: at Tulane Green Wave
  • Sept. 11: vs. Western Carolina Catamounts
  • Sept. 18: vs. Nebraska Cornhuskers
  • Sept. 25: vs. West Virginia Mountaineers
  • Oct. 2: at Kansas State Wildcats
  • Oct. 9: vs. Texas Longhorns
  • Oct. 16: vs. TCU Horned Frogs
  • Oct. 23: at Kansas Jayhawks
  • Oct. 30: vs. Texas Tech Red Raiders
  • Nov. 13: at Baylor Bears
  • Nov. 20: vs. Iowa State Cyclones
  • Nov. 27: at Oklahoma State Cowboys

On the ground, Donnavan Spencer led the way, averaging a respectable 5.5 yards per carry. Spencer played in all nine games, rushing for 718 yards on 131 carries, finding the end zone six times. Mikai Stanley was the second-leading rusher for the Catamounts, logging 45 rushes for 222 yards and two touchdowns across the nine-game season.

Running back Calvin Jones was the leading receiver, catching 24 balls for 198 yards and a touchdown. Tight end Clayton Bardell wasn’t far behind him, hauling in 10 balls for 156 yards and three scores.

While the offense struggled to find foothold in games, the defense didn’t pull their weight either.

Allowing nearly 40 points per game, the Catamounts defense gave opponents 359 yards per contest.

Western Carolina’s run defense was especially poor, as opponents gashed them for 5.3 yards per carry.

The contest should afford Sooner fans an early look at some of the young talent on the 2021 Oklahoma squad.

As the game will surely be in hand early, quarterback Caleb Williams should get plenty of run alongside his fellow class of 2021 recruits.

Regardless of the competition, the contest will represent the first time that Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium will be at 100 percent fan capacity since the onset of the pandemic, just in time for OU to host their old rivals a week later, the Nebraska Cornhuskers.