NORMAN, Okla. – Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield said he had no idea that his teammates would take their jersey to the midfield to throw the coin, and the ovation he received from Oklahoma fans after serving a suspension of a series is a moment that he will always stay with him.
"The love I received when I first entered is something I will never forget," said Mayfield, whose Sooners crushed West Virginia 59-31 on Saturday. "It means the whole world to me, to have the support of the fans, the moment in itself for me … It's going to be hard to know that I will not play here anymore, but what makes me overcome is that we have three more games."
The Sooners will face TCU in the Big 12 championship game next weekend. If they win, they are likely to advance to the college soccer tie.
Saturday was an emotional day for Mayfield, who started the game on the bench. He was suspended from his departure and temporarily stripped of his captaincy by grabbing his crotch and shouting, "F — you!" to the Kansas sideline last weekend.
Because he was banned from walking to midfield, Oklahoma captains Orlando Brown and Dimitri Flowers took Mayfield's shirt.
"I love those guys," Mayfield said. "I have their backs and they have mine."
Mayfield replaced Kyler Murray in the second series, and quickly led the Sooners to touchdowns on their six possessions before finally leaving the game in the third quarter with an enthusiastic ovation and Oklahoma up 28 points. With Mayfield in the lead, the Sooners set a one-game school record with an average of 12 yards per game. Mayfield completed 14 of 17 pbades for 281 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Throughout the day, Oklahoma fans chanted "BA-KER, BA-KER", more pronounced just before halftime, as the Sooners had built a 42-10 lead. 19659002] "Having the support of [fans] made me realize that I just needed to settle in and do my job," Mayfield said. "It's more a sense of relief for me to know that they will always be on my side and it's okay for me to grow, learn and follow in. If I progress and become a better man in front of their eyes, that's something I'm proud of. I am proud to show that I can learn from my mistakes and move on. "
Earlier in the week, Mayfield started crying when addressing his actions in Kansas. After the game against West Virginia, Mayfield trotted down the four sides of Owen Field, colliding with the fans before heading down the tunnel to the locker room for the last time.
"Just try to give back as much as they do," Mayfield said of the fans. "It's not the same, but I'm trying to do everything I can after everything that has helped me."