When the Sooners prepared to face Alabama four years ago, there was little indication that Knight had a performance like that in him.
Knight’s passing yardage that day not only set a career high, which he never quite reached either in his next two season at Oklahoma or his final season at Texas A&M, but it more than doubled any of his passing yardage output in any game that season. More than 42 percent of Knight’s passing yards that season came in the win over the Crimson Tide.
Alabama scored a touchdown four plays into that game. Nine plays later, Knight was throwing an interception. From then on, though, Knight was on fire.
Just two plays later — after Gabe Lynn picked off an A.J. McCarron pass — Knight hit LaColtan Bester for a 45-yard touchdown pass and from then on Knight’s blend of mobility and accuracy lifted the Sooners.
“He was very athletic and was very accurate throwing the ball,” Alabama coach Nick Saban recalled of Knight three years later.
There’s nobody on either team that played in that game that’s still around. But the Sooners say it still has an effect.
Offensive lineman Cody Ford, who is from Louisiana, remembers watching the game just as the Sooners were beginning their recruitment of him.
“I think that was pretty much the turn for OU, letting everyone know that they’re not being pushed around any more,” Ford said. “It shows that we’ve been here before. We know how to handle ourselves.”