DALLAS (FWAA) – Linebacker Eric Striker led Oklahoma with a career-high 12 tackles in a 44-24 win over previously unbeaten West Virginia. Striker tied a career high with three tackles for a loss (for 18 yards lost), which earned him the AutoNation National Defensive Player of the Week honor for games of the weekend of Oct. 3, as selected by the Football Writers Association of America.
Striker, a 6-0, 222-pound senior from Seffner, Fla., also finished with a forced fumble and two sacks, extending his own Oklahoma record for career sacks by a linebacker to 18. The 2014 first-team All-Big 12 selection was a main force as Oklahoma forced five West Virginia turnovers. In the fourth quarter, Striker forced a WVU fumble that was returned 41 yards for a touchdown by Jordan Evans, a score that gave the Sooners a 17-point margin in the fourth quarter.
“Eric’s played well a lot. Some people don’t give you the opportunities (to rush),” Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops said. “In this game, for instance, we have the lead so (WVU) had to throw more. I guarantee it’s more than they wanted to. So there’s more opportunity [for Eric]. He was huge. He’s hard to block. A time or two he beats the guy, but they get a holding call off of a pass that was a first down and it ended up being called back – that would’ve been a sack had they not held him.”
2015 AutoNation FWAA Defensive Players of the Week
• Week of Sept. 5: Karl Joseph, West Virginia
• Week of Sept. 12: Kai Nacua, BYU
• Week of Sept. 19: RJ Williamson, Michigan State
• Week of Sept. 26: Jeremy Cash, Duke
• Week of Oct. 3: Eric Striker, Oklahoma