Oklahoma starting quarterback Dillon Gabriel suffered what coach Brent Venables described after the game as an “upper body injury” in the first half of the Sooners’ 31-24 victory. 14 at BYU on Saturday and did not return. Gabriel’s injury prompted five-star freshman Jackson Arnold to take over in the second half after Gabriel did not return for halftime warmups.
Venables did not offer a specific timetable for Gabriel’s return, but said he expects the Sooners signal-caller to return to action “pretty quickly.” Oklahoma concludes the regular season at home against TCU on Nov. 24 and is still in contention for the Big 12 championship game, which is scheduled to be played Dec. 2 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Gabriel completed 13 of 21 passes for 191 yards and two touchdowns before leaving the game, which was tied 17-17 at halftime. Arnold, in relief of Gabriel, completed 5 of 9 passes for 33 yards and rushed for 24 more yards on eight carries as the Sooners emerged from Provo, Utah, with a 7-point victory and avoided a third straight loss on the road. .
With Arnold entering the game in relief, Oklahoma was forced to redshirt burn the touted freshman who signed with the Sooners as a five-star prospect, according to 247Sports, during the 2023 cycle Arnold already saw playing time in four games earlier this season, which was the maximum playing time for him to preserve his redshirt. Arnold, before Saturday, had thrown for 169 yards and two touchdowns while rushing for another 54 yards and two scores in his playing time this season.
Gabriel, who joined Oklahoma in 2022 after transferring from UCF, previously suffered a head injury last season in a loss at TCU, forcing him to miss one start (against Texas) . Gabriel has been a vital part of the Sooners’ offense in 2023. He eclipsed the 3,000-yard mark in Week 11 when he threw for 423 yards and five touchdowns in a home win over the West Virginia. Gabriel’s impact on the field has also been felt, as the Sooners signal-caller has totaled 337 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2023.
Oklahoma’s win over BYU was the first in three tries as the programs met for the first and only time as conference foes. The Sooners previously dropped contests against the Cougars in 1994 and 2009.
Gn En sports