NORMAN (AP) — After two games, it’s clear that Oklahoma hasn’t reinstalled Paul Thompson as quarterback to baby-sit the offense and prevent defeat. The Sooners think he can be a difference-maker.

“He’s going to be,” coach Bob Stoops said. “I just believe that Paul has a lot of ability. The more comfortable and the more snaps he gets back there, the better and better he’s going to get.”

Thompson got a second chance at quarterback last month after starter Rhett Bomar was dismissed for breaking NCAA rules.

Thompson had been the starter in Oklahoma’s season opener last year, but he threw for only 109 yards, and his three turnovers contributed to a 17-10 loss to TCU. He was replaced by Bomar in Week 2 and subsequently moved to receiver.

This season, Thompson helped Oklahoma win its opener and he looked even better in Week 2. He completed 21 of 33 passes Saturday for 272 yards and two touchdowns in Oklahoma’s 37-20 win against Washington. In the second half, he was 9-for-11 for 170 yards.

“I think he’s going to be better than he was (Saturday),” offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson said. “I don’t think we’ve said, ’Wow! Better than we thought.’ It looks like he’s doing good and gaining, and we think he’s going to keep getting better.”

Thompson earned praise in fall camp for how he manages a game and commands a huddle, and those compliments haven’t stopped. But now he’s finally getting kudos for his passing.

About the only complaint is that Thompson has a tendency to throw high when he misses.

“He’s going to the right places, he’s not forcing throws,” Wilson said. “Every once in a while, like everyone, he’s a little bit off target but that’s most quarterbacks, most places, all levels of football.”

Thompson owned up to the mistakes he did make Saturday, most notably an interception on a play where he was hit as he threw and a fumble in the end zone. Thompson said he could have avoided the fumble, which gave Washington the ball at the Oklahoma 4, and the interception if he had stepped up in the pocket.

Stoops forgave Thompson the fumble.

“The turnover in the end zone, that’s on us as coaches,” Stoops said. “We shouldn’t have put him in that position.”

Next up for Thompson and the Sooners is a road trip to No. 20 Oregon, which beat Fresno State 31-24 Saturday.

“In Game 2, we definitely made some good jumps from Game 1,” Thompson said. “We definitely need to make some big jumps from now ’til Week 3 when we play Oregon. ... As I said last week, there’s things that we can build on, some miscues we had where we could’ve had more points on the board.”

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