Oklahoma's defensive linemen heard all the naysayers. So it was gratifying to shut them up in a dominating performance against Texas.
The Sooners defensive line heard the chatter.
Oklahoma's not strong enough, Oklahoma's not physical enough, Oklahoma can't hold up against tough running games.
Entering Saturday's Red River Rivalry game against Texas, the questions about OU's defensive interior, nationally and locally, put the line in the spotlight.
"People saying we don't have guys like GK [Gerald McCoy], Frank [Alexander], Jeremy Beal, Auston English," defensive end R.J. Washington said. "They've been talking about me, Casey [Walker] and J-Mac [Jamarkus McFarland]. They always say Casey is too short, and I never make plays, David [King] never makes plays.
"For two years, they've been talking about us and what we were going to do and having 'down' years because we're the weak spot."
Then the Sooners coaching staff pushed things to another level.