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OU football: Jalen Hurts wants more 'execution' from Sooners' nation-leading offense

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Jalen Hurts

Senior quarterback Jalen Hurts during the game against UCLA in Pasadena Sept. 14.

Jalen Hurts wants better offensive execution.

That’s saying a lot coming from the quarterback of a team that’s averaging 352.3 passings yards, 324.2 rushing yards and 676.7 total yards per game — the most in the country. Oklahoma’s offense has been a juggernaut, no question about it.

But Hurts wants more.

“It’s not about numbers, it’s about execution. Being better in our execution,” Hurts said. “Just sharpening those things up. Just not our standard of play at times. Just being consistent doing it. Having that mentality every time we touch the field.”

The word “execution” is one of the most-used words in Hurts' vocabulary. Tuesday, he used it five times in a five-minute media scrum.

Hurts is a perfectionist. Even though he’s scored more touchdowns, 13, than incompletions, 12, he sees those as small mistakes that he can get better at.

While an outsider may see the Sooners’ offense and Hurts’ production and the staggering numbers they’ve put up, he knows there are small details he and his teammates could be better at.

And that type of mentality is rubbing off on those around him.

“It’s the little things we see on film,” junior halfback Jeremiah Hall said. “I know that Jalen has said multiple times that we could be better (at the small things), and I totally agree with that.”

But there’s only so much OU’s offense can be better at.

They’re converting 59.3 percent of third downs, they’re averaging 10.5 yards per play and they’re scoring 55.7 points per game. How much better can they realistically get?

“I don’t think we are where we should be as a team,” Hurts said. “(UCLA was) probably the most complete game we’ve played as a whole. Is it where we want to be as a team? No. We’re fortunate enough to have a bye week where I think we’ve had the right intent so far. When we get an opportunity to show it and go out there play and compete again, hopefully we can do it the way we want to do it.”

As for Hurts, he’s been nearly perfect in Oklahoma’s first three games. He’s 49-of-61 with 880 yards passing, nine touchdowns and zero interceptions. And he’s rushed 38 times for 373 yards and four touchdowns.

That’s good enough for 12th in country for passing yards, sixth in the country for rushing yards and second in the country for total offense.

So what did he say when a reporter asked if he thinks he’ll finish the season in the top 10 passing and rushing yards?

Nothing.

What about top five?

“Next question,” he said with a grin, a rare occurrence.

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I joined The Daily in the fall of 2016 as a sophomore. I've covered the soccer team, both men's and women's basketball, as well as the football team for the past two years. I have been the sports editor since spring 2018.

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