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We haven’t been able to talk to Stoops in over a month, but today, there was some notable information released.
The biggest thing to me that stuck out, was that Stoops mentioned on more than one occasion that strength coach, Jerry Schmidt has been very happy with the progress this spring. He even went as far to say that, Schmidt has said it’s been one of the best winters since he’s been here. That’s obviously a great sign as this team heads into spring workouts.
Some of the bigger news that comes out of a preseason press conference is who will and won’t be healthy for spring workouts. Bob said that Nila Kasitati and Aaron Ripkowski won’t be available this spring. However, Adam Shead, Daniel Brooks and Tyler Evans will be able to. Taylor McNamara will miss a portion of the spring, but will participate.
Another big topic of concern was the defensive scheme that OU will try and run this season. Gauging from Bob’s comments, they will indeed experiment with a “50 front” but they’ll still use a four-man front as their base defense.
As far the defense goes, there will be a lot of experimenting and moving guys into different positions. Basically, they’re going to evaluate the talent they have early in the spring, and move guys accordingly to where they fit best.
There were a few questions concerning the importance of this spring, and if this is indeed Stoops’ most important spring since he’s been at Oklahoma, but he quickly shot down any questions surrounding that. He repeated that he’s just as excited for this season as he’s been for any other.
Now that Jerry Montgomery has taken over the defensive line, Bob announced today that Bobby Jack Wright will help out in the secondary and coach the cornerbacks.
Bob was complimentary of all three quarterbacks in the race. He didn’t rave on about a specific one, he just commented that all of them have the ability to both throw and run. Bob said they won’t be in any hurry to name a starter. I would expect the competition to last into two-a-days before they make a decision, based on Bob’s comments.
Only having three defensive tackles for spring practice is alarming. But, Bob commented that a few defensive ends have beefed up and will be able to contribute at defensive tackle in the spring. He didn’t mention who those players would be.
Three starters are gone from the secondary, but there is talent. Bob did mention that Julian Wilson will see more playing time. He also singled out both Kass Everett and Zach Sanchez. Aaron Colvin was also brought up, and Bob basically said that he’s one the best and most consistent players on the team.
Also, on the secondary, Gabe Lynn will move to free safety, Quintin Hayes will move to strong safety, and Julian will play the nickel.
Drew Allen will officially not be with the team this spring. Odds are very likely that he transfers this summer.
The overall feel from Bob was that he’s eager and excited for the spring to begin. He was very quiet about the intentions of the offense with the quarterback run game, as well as other subjects.
This post has been edited 2 times, most recently by James Hale 13 months ago
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Every spring and fall Bob reports that Jerry says it was one of the best years ever. Don't think it means anything.
Some things I took:
1) Mike said if they can lock down the other corner position, he feels like they will have good safety play and the secondary will be comparable to last years group. That's encouraging. Lot's of talk that Cortez Johnson will/can be an excellent corner.
2) Mike seems truly baffled as to how to defend against the spread teams of the big12.
3) Mike made a comment about the defensive tackles needing to learn how to get off blocks better when talking about technique and Montgomery ... "learn". Thought that was interesting.
4) Clearly Mike is big on Corey and Shannon at LB.
5) Mike said they have a "very talented" group to work with on defense.
6) Both Bob and Mike commented that defensive reinforcements would be here in the fall. I think the defensive talent overall, will be pretty solid this fall. They just need to recruit real difference makers in the front 4, imho.
He does mention it every year, but not like he mentioned it today. I had heard from a source that this was the best winter they've had since 2008, and you can tell that Bob was very pleased with the report from Schmidt.
I think you're right on. I've never seen Mike as defensive as he was today. I think he knows he has a lot of talent to work and experiment with in the secondary, but in my opinion, I like the defensive line play concerns him a bit.
I'm very interested to see who the "beefed up" defensive ends are who can move inside? Wonder if this is really true or they are just saying this because there are not enough DL guys for depth this spring?
Thanks for the report. Keep the info. coming. Should be an interesting spring.
Tapper would be the only one that I think has the frame too beef up.
If I were the OU strength and conditioning coach that just saw three of my associates get shown the door I'd be telling Bob that it was my best summer, too!
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