Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Crimson Countdown: K.J. Young
By Brandon Chatmon
During the summer months, we will take a closer look at each scholarship player on Oklahoma’s roster in our Crimson Countdown series. Every day, we'll analyze each player’s impact on the program since arriving on campus, his potential impact this fall and his long-term projection. Starting with No. 1 Dominique Alexander, the series will follow the roster numerically through our final analysis of No. 98 Chuka Ndulue.
Impact thus far: Young redshirted during his first year in the program. He developed a reputation for having some of the best hands on the roster.
Impact in 2014: Young needs to seize the opportunity to play as a redshirt freshman or risk allowing other young receivers on the roster to secure bigger roles in the team's plans. Jalen Saunders is NFL-bound, and the redshirt freshman has the ability to help fill that playmaking void, both as a slot receiver and returner. Young should be able to carve himself a role in the receiver rotation this fall.
Long-term upside: Young could be a staple of OU’s receiving corps for at least three seasons. If he continues to mature, he has tremendous upside and could become an All-Big 12-type of receiver.
Evaluation grade for Young: Incomplete. It’s too early to grade Young, though he appears to have the physical tools to be an impact player.
Development grade for Young: A. Even though he probably could have seen spot duty for OU as a freshman, redshirting him was the right move with Saunders and Sterling Shepard standing between him and any true impact as a slot receiver. Now it’s possible for OU to get four productive seasons from the California native.
Quotable: “He’s away from home but he’s gotten a chance the last few days in practice to make some plays and he’s really stepping up. We’re really excited about him next year.” -- OU receivers coach Jay Norvell on Young during Sugar Bowl practices.