Oklahoma Sooners: oklahoma football

Crimson Countdown: TE McNamara 

July, 5, 2013
7/05/13
12:00
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During the summer months, SoonerNation will take a closer look at each player on Oklahoma’s roster in our Crimson Countdown series. Each day, we will analyze each player’s impact on the program since arriving on campus, his potential impact this fall and his long-term impact. Starting with No. 1 Kendal Thompson, the series will follow the roster numerically through our final analysis of No. 99 Chaz Nelson.

No. 88 Taylor McNamara
Tight end, 6-foot-5, 253 pounds, redshirt freshman


During the summer months, SoonerNation will take a closer look at each player on Oklahoma’s roster in our Crimson Countdown series. Each day, we will analyze each player’s impact on the program since arriving on campus, his potential impact this fall and his long-term impact. Starting with No. 1 Kendal Thompson, the series will follow the roster numerically through our final analysis of No. 99 Chaz Nelson.

No. 85 Geneo Grissom
Defensive end, 6-foot-4, 254 pounds, junior



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Crimson Countdown: DE Mike Onuoha 

July, 3, 2013
7/03/13
12:00
PM ET
During the summer months, SoonerNation will take a closer look at each player on Oklahoma’s roster in our Crimson Countdown series. Each day, we will analyze each player’s impact on the program since arriving on campus, his potential impact this fall and his long-term impact. Starting with No. 1 Kendal Thompson, the series will follow the roster numerically through our final analysis of No. 99 Chaz Nelson.

No. 84 Mike Onuoha
Defensive end, 6-foot-5, 235 pounds, sophomore



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During the summer months, SoonerNation will take a closer look at each player on Oklahoma’s roster in our Crimson Countdown series. Each day, we will analyze each player’s impact on the program since arriving on campus, his potential impact this fall and his long-term impact. Starting with No. 1 Kendal Thompson, the series will follow the roster numerically through our final analysis of No. 99 Chaz Nelson.

No. 82 Brannon Green
Tight end, 6-foot-2, 264 pounds, senior



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Under-the-radar prospects can be found all the time. During the spring evaluation period, during camp season and even after the season, prospects pop up everywhere. Wide receiver K.J. Young falls into that last category. Not many people had heard of the Perris, Calif., product until after Christmas.

Following an Oklahoma offer, things picked up in a hurry. Other schools tried to snatch him away late, but Young stayed solid with the Sooners.

He committed at the airport following his official visit, saying he realized he was home. Prior to his arrival on campus, Young spoke to SoonerNation one more time about what being a Sooner means to him.

[+] EnlargeK.J. Young
Tom Hauck for ESPN.comOklahoma wideout signee K.J. Young said his visit to Norman sealed the deal on his commitment.
SoonerNation: Nobody knew who you were before December. What was that media rush like during those final weeks before signing day?

K.J. Young: It was incredible the way everything just changed. I couldn’t believe OU was interested. But after I took that visit, it was incredible. I knew it was where I wanted to be.

SN: Any lingering thoughts about the recruiting process and how long it took to get noticed?

Young: I could only control what I could control. I couldn’t worry about it. I’m blessed that some schools thought I was worthy to begin with. I’m just going to work as hard as I can to show OU that they’ve made the right choice.

SN: Your size has some wondering if you’ll be lined up out wide or in the slot. Any insight from the coaches on your position?

Young: Coach [Jay] Norvell said there is a great chance that I could play either spot, slot or wide. OU has had a lot of success with slot receivers. Ryan Broyles was incredible and set all those records. It’s a great spot to be.

SN: When we first talked, you mentioned video games a lot when it came to your OU knowledge. Just how big of a factor was that in learning about the university?

Young: It was pretty big. I used to always play with OU on NCAA, and I always did good with them. I knew their team was pretty good. Then I watched a lot of OU games on TV and learned how dominant they could be.

SN:: How different was Norman from your expectations?

Young: It was so different. That visit was what sealed the deal for me. I thought it would be like in the middle of nowhere with nothing to do. It was so much better than I expected. It gave me even more of a reason to want to go there.

SN: What does this opportunity mean to you?

Young: My school [Perris Citrus Hill] isn’t really known for its football tradition. We have a couple of guys here that can change that. I know I can be one of those guys. I can be an example for the younger kids to let them know good things can happen. But it’s not just on the field. It starts in the classroom.

SN: Has the reality hit you’re going to be a Sooner?

Young: After signing day, I took some time off to relax and sort of soak it all in. Life has been so great. All it has done is motivate me to work harder, and that’s what I’ve done all spring.
There are some positions where Oklahoma doesn’t need any help with in its Class of 2014. But then there are others where OU’s targets should be dead-set on trying to improve.

Here are the top five positions of need for OU’s recruiting for the 2014 crop:


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Crimson Countdown: TE Sam Grant 

July, 1, 2013
7/01/13
12:00
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During the summer months, SoonerNation will take a closer look at each player on Oklahoma’s roster in our Crimson Countdown series. Each day, we will analyze each player’s impact on the program since arriving on campus, his potential impact this fall and his long-term impact. Starting with No. 1 Kendal Thompson, the series will follow the roster numerically through our final analysis of No. 99 Chaz Nelson.

No. 81 Sam Grant
Tight end, 6-foot-7, 250 pounds, redshirt freshman



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NORMAN, Okla. -- When he signed with Oklahoma last February, offensive tackle Christian Daimler drew comparisons to departed Sooner Lane Johnson, the No. 4 overall pick in the 2013 NFL draft. A raw yet athletic offensive lineman, Daimler probably won’t make an immediate impact for the Sooners. But he could end up being one of the hidden gems of the Class of 2013.

Before he arrived on campus earlier this month, Daimler talked with SoonerNation about his potential role, what he wants to improve and being compared to Johnson.

SoonerNation: How have things been going since signing day?

[+] EnlargeChristian Daimler
Sam Khan Jr./ESPN.comOffensive tackle Christian Daimler has drawn comparisons to first-round pick Lane Johnson.
Christian Daimler: Everything has been going fine. I’m just spending a lot of time in the weight room to get where I need to be.

SN: Is there anything in particular you’ve been focusing on?

Daimler: I’ve worked a lot on my legs, a lot on my core. My overall body strength was something I really needed to work on. I’ve been hitting the weight room really hard to improve my body strength and be able to compete with everybody.

SN: Do you know who will be your roommate?

Daimler: I’ll be rooming with Matt Dimon.

SN: What have the coaches told you about your potential role this fall?

Daimler: I’m going to go into fall camp, compete with everyone else and see how things go. We’ll decide after fall camp whether I’m going to redshirt. It will be a good possibility that I do, though. If that’s the deal, I’ll work as hard as I can to do whatever I can to help the team and hopefully win a national championship.

SN: What’s it been like with the coaching changes and Coach [Bill] Bedenbaugh coming in?

Daimler: It hasn’t been too drastic. Obviously not having [former offensive line] Coach [James] Patton there has been a little weird since he recruited me but Coach Bedenbaugh has been awesome. I kind of like how it’s going to be just one offensive line coach. I’m really looking forward to being with the entire offensive line and one offensive line coach.

SN: Was it frustrating to have things change in the middle of the recruiting process?

Daimler: It wasn’t real frustrating. I’d built a relationship with Coach [Bruce] Kittle and Coach Patton, and it was real odd right after I signed for them to be gone. But I’d built such a good relationship with so many other coaches on the coaching staff it wasn’t too drastic. I still felt Oklahoma was the place I wanted to be.

SN: What are you most excited about?

Daimler: Getting together with a team, building that bond that a team has and getting to know the older guys, though I know some already.

SN: What have you been told about summer workouts?

Daimler: I’ve been told, whatever I’m expecting, don’t be shocked if it’s worse. It’s going to be really tough and push you until you can’t push anymore. But they’re just doing it so you can be as good as you can and because you have potential. I know whatever they do is going to be what’s best for me so I’m going to work as hard as I can to do what they want me to do.

SN: When the coaches talked about you, they tended to bring up Lane Johnson. What was that like to be compared to him?

Daimler: That was pretty cool. I never got to meet Lane but watching his film, I can definitely see my name comparing to him and that’s a guy I can mold myself after to try to get to where he is. He’s put in a lot of hard work, and I’m willing to do the same to get to where he is.

SN: When you leave OU, what do you want your legacy to be?

Daimler: I want to be one of those offensive linemen from OU that everybody remembers. They’ve had such an awesome tradition with offensive tackles. I want to leave my mark and hopefully, one day, be able to continue on to the NFL. That’s my goal, and I’m going to do whatever possible to get to that. I want people to look back and say, 'That was a really good offensive lineman.'
One day can change a recruit’s life forever. For wide receiver Jordan Smallwood, it was the camp at Oklahoma last June.

He entered the day with Wyoming as his only notable offer. Four days later, he was committed to the Sooners.

Smallwood carried that chip on his shoulder into his senior season, helping Jenks (Okla.) High win a state championship.

Prior to his arrival on campus, Smallwood talked to SoonerNation one more time about what he expects at OU.

Jordan Smallwood
Bob Przybylo/ESPN.comOklahoma signee Jordan Smallwood said he wants to become one of the Sooners' best ever wideouts.
SoonerNation: Who is your roommate going to be?

Jordan Smallwood: Quarterback Cody Thomas.

SN: Wait, what? I had never heard of you and Cody as being buddy-buddy. How did this all happen?

Smallwood: It just sort of happened that way. Coach [Josh] Heupel got us talking. I didn’t have a roommate. He didn’t have a roommate. Last time I talked to him was the spring game. I know he’s ready to play at OU as much as I am.

SN: What have the coaches told you about what your potential role could be this season?

Smallwood: To come down there and compete. If I can learn the system, I can get on the field. If nothing else, I’ll definitely play some special teams this year.

SN: When did you know in your heart OU was the place for you?

Smallwood: After the very first game I went to. After seeing them play, even though it was the Notre Dame loss, I knew. Watching them play and perform and compete, I knew that was the place for me. It was home.

SN: What do you expect for your first year at OU?

Smallwood: To learn a lot of new things. A lot of things. Coming from Jenks, it’s a great school, but it’s a big step going from high school to OU.

SN: Who is going to help you out with that transition?

Smallwood: Jalen Saunders. We’ve been talking, and he said he would definitely look out for me. Of course there’s Alex [Ross], too. I’m not worried.

SN: What do you want your legacy to be when you leave OU?

Smallwood: That I gave it everything I got 100 percent of the time. I want to go down as one of the best wide receivers to go through OU.

SN: I know when you committed to OU, you had that chip on your shoulder about the lack of big-time offers. At this point, though, is it all water under the bridge?

Smallwood: It was God’s plan. I can’t really complain about it. You’re right, it’s not really a chip on my shoulder anymore. This is my assignment now. Now it’s up to me for what happens.

SN: The Jenks pipeline is strong with Alex Ross, yourself, and of course OU is looking at four-star safety Steven Parker for 2014 and defensive tackle Marquise Overton for 2015. What are your thoughts on recruiting kids from your high school?

Smallwood: Que [Overton] keeps saying he’s going to meet me there at OU so nothing really needs to be said. Steven is different, though. I’ve been leaving him alone and letting him do his own thing. I know he’ll make the right choice for himself. I hope it’s OU.

SN: Let’s look way into the future. Whenever I would talk with your father, he would talk about you and your younger brother, Julian. He’s going into the ninth grade this fall. Is he going to be better than you?

Smallwood: Julian is going to be better than me.

SN: Wait, you admit it?

Smallwood: Yeah, I don’t have a problem with it. It’s crazy how big he is already. I know he’s already talking about going to camps this summer. I’m glad I could open the door for him, and I’m excited to see what he does.

Crimson Countdown: G Bronson Irwin 

June, 19, 2013
6/19/13
12:00
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During the summer months, SoonerNation will take a closer look at each player on Oklahoma’s roster in our Crimson Countdown series. Each day, we will analyze each player’s impact on the program since arriving on campus, his potential impact this fall and his long-term impact. Starting with No. 1 Kendal Thompson, the series will follow the roster numerically through our final analysis of No. 99 Chaz Nelson.

No. 68 Bronson Irwin
Guard, 6-foot-5, 310 pounds, senior



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For Oklahoma's coaches, it’s clear which player is one of their top priorities to fill in the Class of 2014. It has been clear for more than 13 months.

It’s not just the coaches, though. ESPN 150 quarterback commit Justice Hansen (Edmond, Okla./Santa Fe) hasn’t been bashful about his thoughts. The same can be said for ESPN 300 tight end Carson Meier (Tulsa, Okla./Union), who is also a Sooners pledge.


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Since position coach Jay Norvell arrived in Norman, the Sooners have been stockpiling talent at receiver. To complement bigger receivers like Trey Metoyer, Norvell signed inside playmaker Austin Bennett to OU's 2013 class.

As he prepared to arrive in Norman for summer workouts, Bennett checked with SoonerNation to talk about his future roommate, what he wants to major in and Texas making a run at him just before signing day:

SoonerNation: Who are you rooming with?

[+] EnlargeAustin Bennett
Miller Safrit/ESPN.comThe Longhorns tried to flip OU receiver signee Austin Bennett late in his recruitment.
Austin Bennett: Keith Ford. We actually ended up becoming pretty good friends. We went on our official visit together. Went to a couple games together.

SN: What are you most looking forward to at OU?

Bennett: The experience of college. Getting on the field as quickly as possible, adjusting to the speed.

SN: What personal goals do you have?

Bennett: To try to earn a spot on the field and not be redshirted. If I do get redshirted, I’m not going to make a big deal about it, and [I will] take advantage of it. But short term, I want to help the team out as much as I can.

SN: What have the coaches told you about a potential role?

Bennett: Coaches have said my role is to be a slot receiver. Punt returner, kick returner, too. If my role is to play special teams, so be it.

OU has some good receivers. But I definitely think I have a shot to earn a position with my football knowledge. I think I can come in and make a big impact.

SN: What happened with Texas trying to get you to flip late?

Bennett: Well, a week to two weeks before signing day, they came to my school and told me they wanted a shot with me, that they had been looking at me my freshman year. Which was true, but they hadn’t really made a big impression on me. They haven’t produced a lot of great receivers in the last four, five years. Texas, it’s a great school to go to, but I chose Oklahoma over Texas.

SN: So you never gave it a second thought?

Bennett: I never thought about leaving Oklahoma. Once I make a commitment -- that’s where I wanted to be unless something major happened. Oklahoma is where I want to be.

SN: What are you planning to major in?

Bennett: Biology. I want to try to be a physical therapist.
NORMAN, Okla. – Bob Stoops indicated he hired Jerry Montgomery to coach Oklahoma’s defensive line, in large part because of Montgomery’s reputation as a recruiter.

[+] EnlargeJerry Montgomery
Lon Horwedel/Icon SMIJerry Montgomery comes to Norman from Ann Arbor with a strong recruiting reputation.
That reputation manifested itself when news broke that Montgomery was leaving Michigan to join the Sooners.

“I actually couldn’t recruit for Oklahoma until I signed the contract,” Montgomery said Wednesday in his first interview with local reporters. “The one thing that happened was I was involved with so many kids, that kids reached out and said, ‘Coach you’re leaving, what’s going on?’ I said, ‘Call me, I’ll explain it you.’

“They all reached out to me, a good 15-20 kids, to say why? So we talked and had those conversations.”

In Ann Arbor, Montgomery demonstrated an aptitude for developing such relationships with prospects, as he became one of Michigan’s most prolific recruiters. He believes he can do the same in Norman.

“It’s about building relationships, I don’t care where you’re at, if you’re in Florida or Texas or Michigan or whatever,” he said. “It’s about building relationships in this area, the Texas area, and the surrounding states.”

Montgomery, however, said OU won’t be restricted recruiting just from traditional pipelines. He believes the Sooners can go to the South, too, where prominent and prevalent defensive line blue-chippers have been fueling the SEC’s dominance of college football.

(Read full post)

Offers rising for Adeosun, sleeper OL 

January, 23, 2013
1/23/13
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During an interview with George Adeosun (Alpharetta, Ga./Alpharetta), a funny thing happened. It started out like any other, with the 6-foot-5, 300-pound offensive lineman giving his thoughts on his first two BCS offers -- Virginia and Oklahoma.

“Oklahoma is notable for its alumni association, and Virginia is well known for its academics,” Adeosun said.

But toward the end of his answer, a familiar sound occurred as a tweet was sent out. It was from his coach.


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Treadwell sets top 3, eyes another visit 

December, 30, 2012
12/30/12
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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Laquon Treadwell (Crete, Ill./Crete-Monee) seems to like the southeastern culture, and that could be a good thing for Ole Miss.

The ESPN 150 wide receiver says the Rebels are in his top three with Oklahoma and Oklahoma State. He will take his official to Stillwater on Jan. 11.


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