NORMAN — University of Oklahoma co-offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh was named one of 15 semifinalists for the 2018 Broyles Award on Tuesday. The Broyles Award is presented annually to the nation’s top assistant coach.
Bedenbaugh, who is in his sixth season at OU and who was a Broyles Award finalist last year, has been key to OU’s consistently explosive offense in 2018. Oklahoma leads the nation in total offense (576.1 yards per game) and scoring offense (49.5 points per game), and ranks second in passing efficiency rating (199.6).
The Sooners are averaging 8.8 yards per play this year, a figure that would break the FBS single-season record of 8.6 by Hawaii in 2006. The next highest average this season is 8.0 by Alabama, and the third highest is 7.4 by Georgia.
OU also leads the nation with its 6.9 yards per rush, and ranks second by averaging 11.9 yards per pass attempt. No FBS team has ever finished in the top two nationally in both categories in the same year.
Additionally, the Sooners are the only team in the country this season with at least 30 rushing touchdowns (36) and at least 30 passing TDs (35).
What makes those numbers even more impressive is the fact that OU had to replace two-time All-American and 2017 Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield at quarterback, as well as one of the country’s top running backs who was lost for the year in this season’s second game due to injury (Rodney Anderson led all Power Five players in yards from scrimmage [1,333] and total TDs  from Oct. 21, 2017, to the end of last season).
Despite those losses, the Sooners have been as efficient as last year when they set school records for total offense, yards per play, passing yards per game, completion percentage and passing efficiency rating.
Oklahoma leads the country in yards per game this season despite ranking 108th out of 130 teams in plays per game (just 65.5). OU is also averaging 0.73 points per offensive play. Going back to 1996, the highest end-of-season figure was 0.69 by 2013 national champion Florida State.
Four times already this season the Sooners have recorded at least 300 rushing and at least 300 passing yards in a game. The feat had only been accomplished six times in program history entering the year.
Five Broyles Award finalists will be invited to travel to Little Rock, Ark., where the 2018 award will be announced on Dec. 4.
Past Oklahoma winners of the Broyles Award are current head coach and then-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Lincoln Riley in 2015, offensive coordinator and tight ends/fullbacks coach Kevin Wilson in 2008, and offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Mark Mangino in 2000.
2018 Broyles Award Semifinalists
Alabama: Michael Locksley, Offensive Coordinator
Army: Jay Bateman, Defensive Coordinator
California: Tim DeRuyter, Defensive Coordinator/OLBs
Clemson: Jeff Scott, Co-Offensive Coordinator/WRs
Georgia: Sam Pittman, Offensive Line
LSU: Dave Aranda, Defensive Coordinator
Michigan: Don Brown, Defensive Coordinator
Mississippi State: Bob Shoop, Defensive Coordinator/Safeties
Notre Dame: Chip Long, Offensive Coordinator
Oklahoma: Bill Bedenbaugh, Co-Offensive Coordinator/O-Line
UAB: David Reeves, Defensive Coordinator
UCF: Glen Elarbee, Offensive Line
Utah State: David Yost, Offensive Coordinator/QBs
Washington State: Tracy Claeys, Defensive Coordinator
West Virginia: Jake Spavital, Offensive Coordinator/QBs