- Jake Trotter, ESPN Staff Writer
NORMAN, Okla. -- Through two games, the Sooners have played nine true freshmen: wide receivers Trey Metoyer, Sterling Shepard and Durron Neal, tight end Taylor McNamara, center Ty Darlington, defensive ends Mike Onuoha and Charles Tapper, linebacker Eric Striker and cornerback Gary Simon. With the cupcake portion of the schedule over and one with, it appears the rest of the true freshmen will redshirt this season.
SoonerNation breaks down the rest of the freshman class, from those most likely to least likely to make an impact in 2013:
1. Alex Ross, running back: The Sooners could have an opening in the backfield for Ross with Dominique Whaley due to graduate. Damien Williams figures to be projected starter, and then there’s Brennan Clay and Roy Finch. But Ross nearly avoided this redshirt this season with an even more crowded backfield. Ross’ future is bright.
3. Zack Sanchez, cornerback: Sanchez has the kind of versatility that Mike Stoops covets. Sanchez can play either cornerback, nickel or dime back, and the Sooners will have at least a couple of openings in the secondary.
4. Sam Grant, tight end: Grant actually made the trip to UTEP, though didn’t get in the game. He could still play this season, should the Sooners suffer any injuries at tight end. Either way, Grant is an intriguing prospect and will eventually factor into the tight end rotation.
5. David Smith, running back: Smith gets overlooked in this class because of Ross, but he had a very strong camp and drew praise from position coach Cale Gundy. It’s not unthinkable that he could factor into the rotation next season.
6. Trevor Knight, quarterback: Knight has been impressive in more ways than one since arriving on campus. The coaches love his leadership off the field, and Knight has had his moments as a scout-team quarterback. But unless somebody transfers, Knight is probably no higher than third-team quarterback next season.
7. Kyle Marrs, guard: Marrs got time with the second-team offense during fall camp, but is not physically and technically ready to contribute just yet. Playing time figures to be tough for Marrs next season, with OU’s top five interior offensive linemen (Gabe Ikard, Tyler Evans, Nila Kasitati, Adam Shead, Darlington, Austin Woods) all expected to return.
8. Derrick Woods, wide receiver: Woods was banged up most of the preseason and quickly fell behind the other freshman receivers. Woods’ future might be on defense, which could actually expedite his chances for getting playing time earlier in his career.
9. Daniel Brooks, running back: Brooks is still rehabilitating from a serious knee injury he suffered last fall. Until he’s cleared medically, it’s unclear how and where Brooks fits in.
1dBrandon Chatmon and Jake Trotter