Oklahoma Sooners: James Hanna

Top 10 Bedlam moments of Stoops era 

November, 20, 2012
Despite last season’s loss, the Bob Stoops era has featured many memorable games and moments against Oklahoma State. SoonerNation ranks the Top 10 Bedlam moments in the Stoops era for the Sooners:

1. Mike asks Les if he wants more

The week of Bedlam in 2003, OSU coach Les Miles said the game would feature “maybe the best team in college football” and “a darn good football team” and “we’re going to figure out which one is which.” The Stoops brothers didn’t care for the comment. In the fourth quarter, with the Sooners on their way to a convincing 52-9 victory, defensive coordinator Mike Stoops stepped from the sideline and stared across the field, raising his arms, then his palms, as if he were asking Miles, “You want some more?”

Stats: Examining Landry Jones' struggles 

September, 27, 2012
Oklahoma’s 24-19 loss to Kansas State last Saturday seems to have made Sooners fans forget just how good Landry Jones can be. His struggles were the driving force behind OU’s first loss of the season but the Sooners will need the senior if they have any hope of competing for a Big 12 championship this season.

No matter how bad it seems, Jones is the only quarterback in the league who has led his team to a Big 12 Championship during his career.

[+] EnlargeJones
Nelson Chenault/US PresswireOU quarterback Landry Jones has not spread the ball around as much in 2012.
In 2010, Jones led the Sooners on a five-game winning streak to capture the Big 12 title and win the Fiesta Bowl. Thanks to ESPN Stats & Information, SoonerNation was able to take a closer look at what many consider the best stretch of his career.

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Where OU draftees ranked in high school 

April, 26, 2012
This weekend won’t resemble Oklahoma’s NFL draft class of 2010, when Sam Bradford, Gerald McCoy, Trent Williams and Jermaine Gresham all went in the first round.

That said, several Sooners with pro aspirations leave Norman with higher ESPN NFL draft rankings than high school recruiting rankings. Breaking down the OU draft class through that prism:

Frank Alexander

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Every weekday morning, a member of the SoonerNation gives his take on three things happening in the Sooner sports world.

1. The NFL draft begins tonight at 7 p.m, and though it’s unlikely any Sooners will hear their names called during the first round, there will be plenty of familiar names coming off the board. Oklahoma’s defense was much maligned late last season but Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III, who torched the Sooners' secondary, is set to get selected No. 2 overall by Washington and Oklahoma State receiver Justin Blackmon, who had 18 receptions for 200 yards and one touchdown in two games against OU, likely will be drafted in the top 10. ESPN draft guru Mel Kiper also has OSU quarterback Brandon Weeden going late in the first round. Clearly the Sooners weren’t the only team who struggled to stop Griffin or Weeden and Blackmon.

2. You have to wonder what it is like to be Landry Jones tonight. He could be walking across the stage to meet Roger Goodell, but instead he’s in class? There are several NFL teams looking for a quarterback in the draft and it’s easy to believe Jones would have been a top 10 pick if he had elected to declare early. Regardless, Sooners fans should be happy, they’ll have an NFL quarterback at the helm this fall, someone multiple NFL teams would love to have in their locker room.

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Chat wrap: Hope for OU tight ends

April, 3, 2012

SoonerNation writer Jake Trotter chatted with readers Monday. Here's the full transcript. If you didn't get your question answered, send it to Jake's mailbag to be published on Friday.

Here are a few highlights from the chat:

Michelle (Dallas): Give us your opinion on the new WR corp.

Jake Trotter: It's an exciting group that has a little bit of everything. Trey Metoyer reminds me of Dez Bryant the way he can go up and get the ball. Durron Neal
has a lot of savvy. Courtney Gardner is an athletic freak. Sterling Shepard
has Ryan Broyles pedigree. Metoyer could have the same first-year impact that Kenny Stills did two seasons ago. The others could factor in to the rotation, too, but we'll see.

Tony (Richmond, CA): Have you witnessed any hope for the TE position during spring ball? Also, was James Hanna underutilized last season? A TE running a 4.5 40 sounds like a matchup problem that could have been exploited more.

Jake Trotter: Yeah, I have hope. Brannon Green
seems to be serviceable, maybe more. But as you point out, TE is not a critical position in a Josh Heupel offense, far less so than a Kevin Wilson offense. James Hanna could be a steal in the draft. He has some measurables you can work with.

Glenn (Chicago): Jake...is the secondary or linebackers going to need more help? It looks like the linebackers are missing a lot of experience.

Jake Trotter: Tom Wort started all of last season and some two seasons ago. Corey Nelson has played a lot the last two years. So I don't know if experience is a worry at LB. Secondary is the bigger concern. There are some holes there that need to be addressed.

Steve (cali): what can you tell us about the DE position from the two scrimmages?

Jake Trotter: R.J. Washington is clearly the best DE on the team. He's been solid. David King has been nicked up but we know what he can do. Chaz Nelson has a lot of speed. He's going to help. Chuka Ndulue has been the best of the young guys.

Position battle update: Tight end 

March, 21, 2012
While the Sooners are on spring break this week, SoonerNation will update readers on five position battles this spring. For today: Tight end.

The thinnest position on the entire team going into the spring was tight end. Austin Haywood quit, Max Stevenson suffered a potentially career-ending injury and left the team and James Hanna and Trent Ratterree graduated. That left the Sooners without a single returning tight end on scholarship.

No wonder, then, that tight was a top priority for OU’s most recent recruiting class. The Sooners went out and signed junior-college transfer Brannon Green and California prep star Taylor McNamara, who both enrolled for the spring. Now, it appears the Sooners are off the precipice at a position that has been vital to what OU has done offensively the last several seasons.

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“Loss Impact” analyzes each outgoing starter or rotation player to assess how much his departure will impact Oklahoma next season.

What Oklahoma loses: James Hanna wasn’t extremely productive -- just 27 catches for 381 yards and two touchdowns in 2011 -- but he did bring experience and provided another pass catching option for Landry Jones.

He was not a dominant blocker nor was he consistently used as a deep or short-yardage threat. He was not a indispensable part of the offensive attack as a senior.

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Triple Option: Wrapping up the combine 

February, 29, 2012
Every weekday morning, a member of the SoonerNation gives his take on three things happening in the Sooner sports world.

1. The NFL combine is over and it seems Jamell Fleming and James Hanna made the biggest impressions among the Sooners entering April's draft. Fleming was a solid corner in college but scouts have questioned his speed. A 4.53 in the 40-yard dash was great for the 5-foot-11, 192 pound prospect. As for Hanna, he most likely went from an undrafted free agent to a late-round pick. Brandon Chatmon details the combine results from OU's perspective here.

2. With Oklahoma's second junior day approaching on Saturday, the popular question among OU fans is this: Who will be the Sooners' first verbal commitment for the class of 2013? Well, I think fans won't have to wait much longer. Expect at least one commit from a junior day visitor by the end of the weekend.

3. Meanwhile, the Sooners have extended more than 70 offers for the class of 2013 and 15 of those prospects already have committed to other schools. Oklahoma is 0-7 in head-to-head battles against Texas and has lost out on all four of its offensive tackle offers (Evan Lisle committed to Ohio State last night). But as Bob Przybylo details, most of OU's top targets are still on the board.

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Several Sooners made themselves some money during the NFL combine in Indianapolis. Seven former Oklahoma standouts participated in the seven-day combine as teams and draft prospects prepare for the NFL draft which will be held on April 26, 27, 28.

Top Performers

Tight end James Hanna was one of the stars of the combine, ranking as the fastest tight end with his 4.49 time in the 40-yard dash along with top ten rankings in the three-cone drill (6.76 seconds) and bench press (24 reps).

Tom Pennington/Getty Images
James Hanna flashed his excellent speed near the end of the 2010 Bedlam game.

Hanna’s stellar numbers surprised many and will likely force NFL teams to go back and give his game film a closer look with the goal of figuring out if Hanna was under-utilized at OU or if his workout numbers simply don’t translate to the field.

Cornerback Jamell Fleming was another Sooner with a terrific showing during workouts. He could explode up draft boards with his solid 40-yard dash time, strong bench press numbers and excellent broad jump.

Fleming was also solid in on-field drills and could have cemented himself a spot on Day Two (second or third round).

Solid Showings

Defensive end/linebacker Ronnell Lewis had a solid showing, topping all linebackers in the bench press (36 reps) and running a 4.68 time in the 40-yard dash.

Receiver Ryan Broyles, who is still recovering from his torn ACL last November, impressed in his lone physical test, with 21 bench press reps at 225 pounds, which was second among receivers.

Tackle Donald Stephenson was the fastest offensive lineman at the combine, clocking a 4.94 time in the 40-yard dash. He showed excellent athleticism but will be looking to improve his 19 reps in the bench press at OU’s pro day.

Matthew Emmons/US Presswire
Travis Lewis will likely run the 40-yard dash again at OU's Pro Day in March.

Can’t Wait Until Pro Day

Linebacker Travis Lewis was very solid overall but ran a disappointing 4.88 time in the 40-yard dash which will be held against him unless he improves his time at OU’s pro day. Lewis did impress in other areas with a 10-foot, 2-inch broad jump, which ranked sixth amongst linebackers, solid bench numbers and a 36-inch vertical.

Defensive end Frank Alexander didn’t workout at the combine due to a previously undiscovered heart condition, according to his Twitter page.

Complete Summary of Results

Broyles: second among receivers with 21 reps at 225 pounds.

Fleming: 4.53 in the 40; second among cornerbacks with 23 reps at 225 pounds; 34-inch vertical; 10 foot, 5-inch broad jump, ranking fourth among cornerbacks.

Lewis: 4.68 in the 40; 36 reps at 225 pounds, tops among linebackers; 31-inch vertical; 7.09 3-cone drill; 4.4 20-yard shuttle; 9-foot, 3-inch broad jump.

Travis Lewis: 4.88 in the 40; 22 reps at 225 pounds; 36-inch vertical; 10-foot, 2-inch broad jump

Stephenson: 4.94 in the 40, the fastest time among offensive linemen; 19 reps at 225 pounds; 35.5-inch vertical; 9-foot, 4-inch broad jump; 7.52 time in the three cone drill; 4.78 seconds in the 20-yard shuttle.

Hanna: 4.49 in the 40, the fastest time among tight ends; 24 reps at 225 pounds, fourth among tight ends; 36-inch vertical; 6.76 three-cone drill, second among tight ends; 4.11 20-yard shuttle, second among tight ends; 11.43 60-yard shuttle.

Alexander: Attended the combine but unable to participate in drills due to injury.

Spring position preview: Tight end 

February, 28, 2012
The tight end position has seen several different faces at the University of Oklahoma. Tight ends can be a big part of the offense like Jermaine Gresham in 2008 or they can have a minimal impact like the past three seasons.

James Hanna caught 27 passes for 381 yards and two touchdowns as a senior so the Sooners won’t be looking to replace massive production at the position.

[+] EnlargeTaylor McNamara
John Albright/Icon SMITight end Taylor McNamara enrolled early at Oklahoma so that he could have a better chance to play as a freshman.
The tight end spot will be one of the spotlight positions this spring as playing time is wide open.

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James Hanna turns heads at NFL combine

February, 25, 2012

Former Oklahoma tight end James Hanna, who caught 52 passes for 720 yards and 9 touchdowns during his collegiate career, had an impressive showing at the NFL combine today. Here's an excerpt from ESPN Insider's NFL draft blog Insider:

Oklahoma TE James Hanna (6-3, 252) turned some heads with a strong workout. Hanna posted a 4.49-second 40-yard dash, a 36-inch vertical jump, and a 10-foot-2 broad jump. He did drop two passes early on, but Hanna regained his composure and fared better as drills progressed.

Hanna's 40-yard dash was first among the tight ends at the combine. And he wasn't the only Sooner to impress. Left tackle Donald Stephenson, who started two years at OU, ran a 4.94 40-yard dash, the fastest among all the offensive lineman.

It will be interesting to see where Hanna and Stephenson get drafted in April.

Seven Sooners invited to NFL combine

February, 7, 2012
Seven Oklahoma players have been invited to participate in the 2012 NFL Scouting Combine from Feb. 22-28 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. Here's the list:
Midway through December, Oklahoma knew it had to address the tight end position immediately.

James Hanna and Trent Ratterree were seniors, Austin Haywood had left the team, Max Stevenson was ailing with a pectoral injury and commitment Laith Harlow had suffered a back injury, putting his future in question.

OU quickly went to work on the recruiting trail, securing three new tight ends for the 2012 season.

Brannon Green (Altamont, Kan./Fort Scott) is a physical tight end who reminds people of Brody Eldridge thanks to his blocking mentality.

“I'm going to look them in the eye. Pancake them, then stand over them. That's my mentality,” Green said on signing day.

But he could surprise in other aspects of his game as well.

“He’s catching the ball extremely well for a guy who you think of as the most physical of those [three] guys,” offensive coordinator Josh Heupel said.

Taylor McNamara (San Diego/Westview) was an important signee for the present and the future. The spring enrollee is already on campus and will get to participate in spring football. He could have the most potential of the trio.

“He has the ability to stretch the field vertically and with a big long frame,” Heupel said. “He’s an extremely talented kid that is competitive.”

Sam Grant (Lakewood, Ohio/St. Edward) was a late pickup, choosing the Sooners over Michigan on Monday. A long, lanky tight end prospect at 6-foot-5, 230 pounds, Grant could bulk up and be a solid blocker and red zone threat.

“He hasn’t scratched the surface of what he’s going to be,” Heupel said.

Oklahoma position grades: WRs and TEs 

January, 25, 2012
Before the Sooners' 31-14 win over Iowa in the Insight Bowl, Jake Trotter and Brandon Chatmon analyzed each Oklahoma position group. Now, the SoonerNation staff is giving each position a grade for its performance in 2011.

Grade: B-
Thanks to Ryan Broyles, this unit stays in the 'B' range. But only because of Broyles. After a preseason hamstring injury, Kenny Stills never found the groove he did as a true freshman, while the progress of Jaz Reynolds and Trey Franks was interrupted by suspensions. Kameel Jackson’s development late was encouraging. But tight ends James Hanna and Trent Ratterree never factored into the passing game much.
- Jake Trotter

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As National Signing Day approaches on Feb. 1, Brandon Chatmon is breaking down every commitment and signee in the Sooners' 2012 recruiting class. View all of our profiles here.

Name: Taylor McNamara

Position: Tight End

Height, Weight: 6-foot-5, 230 pounds

Hometown/School: San Diego/Westview

Committed: Dec. 28, 2011

(Read full post)


Stoops, Players Want To Effect Change
Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops sits down with Gene Wojciechowski to discuss his team's stand against racism.