Bell seizes No. 2 QB spot

NORMAN, Okla. — After a stellar spring game and strong fall camp, sophomore quarterback Blake Bell has now bulldozed his way into OU's backup quarterback role.

OU head coach Bob Stoops officially announced Tuesday that Bell had ascended to No. 2 on the Sooners' depth chart behind redshirt senior signal-caller Landry Jones.

"The offensive staff and I have decided that Blake Bell has earned the backup quarterback position, so that is where we will proceed from here," Stoops said.

The Wichita, Kan., native made his way into fans' hearts a season ago, contributing 13 rushing touchdowns in just seven games with the short-yardage "Belldozer" package.

Stoops was quick to point out, though, that junior quarterback Drew Allen has been impressive as well; still, Bell's progress earned him the nod.

"Drew has done also a really good job and made great improvement," Stoops said. "I just feel Blake's may have been more consistent overall and is playing the way we need him to. Drew as well is getting there and he'll continue to battle."

Co-offensive coordinator Josh Heupel echoed those thoughts on Allen and Bell.

"It's not taking anything away from Drew (Allen) because he has competed hard and played well too," Heupel said. "Obviously, it's tough for him. At the same time guys that have stayed the course have had opportunity come to them and have been in the position to make the most of it."

While Bell is currently best known for his effectiveness in the "Belldozer" package, it may have been the Kansas product's arm that separated him from Allen. Stoops and the offensive coaching staff have continually made a point to mention that they view Bell as a passing threat in addition to his ability in short-yardage situations.

In the annual spring game, Bell connected on 14-of-19 passes for 179 yards and a touchdown, outshining Allen in the process.

With the promotion to the backup quarterback spot, Bell appears to be the heir apparent to Jones as the quarterback of the future for the Sooners following Jones' departure after this season to graduation.

However, Stoops is plenty happy with who he's got slinging the football right now in Jones. Stoops' response to what he would do if Jones got hurt was short and succinct.

"Let's not go there," Stoops said.

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