Shipp still molding defensive line

It was another typical workout for the Oklahoma football team this evening as the Sooners continue to prepare for tomorrow nights scrimmage.

Freshman defensive tackle Tommie Harris sat out tonight's practice with a bruised knee, but the OU coaches don't think it's serious and Harris is questionable for Wednesday's scrimmage.

Despite the recent mass of defensive tackles heading to offense, defensive line coach Jackie Shipp feels the Sooners are still loaded at the position with Harris, Kory Klein, Barry Holleyman, Dusty Dvorazcek and Juan Prishker left to plug the middle.

Of the five talented defensive tackles sophomore Kory Klein has stepped up as the Sooners best and most consistent player at the position this fall, and has already locked up a starting spot.

"Things are going well with us at the tackles" said Shipp.

"KK has shown great leadership. He's very good at always going 100 percent. He's an outstanding technician. He studies the game. When the other team lines up Kory has an instinct as to what's going to happen."

Harris, who has been slowed by injuries since last Saturday, continues to hold the other starting slot with Barry Holleyman close behind.

"Tommie Harris has been very good, but he's only a freshman, so he's still learning," said Shipp.

"However, he has a natural talent that a lot of our defensive tackles don't have that he was born and blessed with. Tommie works hard and has a chance to be a great player, but he's only a freshman and has a lot to learn."

"Barry Holleyman has been a much improved player. He has played well this summer," said Shipp.

As Prishker's nagging back injury continues to bother him more and more it appears that true freshman Dusty Dvorazcek will see playing time in the rotation this year.

"Juan Prishker has been hurt. If we can get him back Juan can be a factor. Dusty Dvorazcek is a very good young player that's very strong. He has a lot of determination," said Shipp.

Shipp said after tonight's practice that he doesn't know if he's going to rotate his tackles yet this season, but says he'll have it figured out by the 25th and would like to rotate the players if possible.

Another bright spot for the Sooners this spring has been the linebackers. Coach Stoops said he has five strong linebackers that will see time this year and he couldn't be more pleased with this unit.

Rocky Calmus, Teddy Lehman and Jimmy Wilkerson will be the three starters and Brandon Moore and freshman Russell Dennison will back them up.

The defense dominated practice for much of today's workout shutting the first team offense down, regardless of who was at quarterback, during the two-minute drills allowing only one big play on a draw to Quentin Griffin.

Both quarterbacks were about even throwing the ball. Nate Hybl took the majority of his snaps with the first team and started the two-minute drill with the first unit. White did get work with the first unit during skelly drills, but neither quarterback was effectively able to move the offense during the two-minute drill.

Andre Woolfolk worked out on offense and was outstanding catching passes. Wherever the OU coaching staff puts Woolfolk, on any given practice he is a factor. Today, Woolfolk worked only on offense and was the Sooners' best receiver.

Offensive lineman Howard Duncan continues to have outstanding practices and freshman center Vince Carter does well at times, but continues to struggle in other spurts. If the season started today, Carter would be the Sooners' starting center. There is no question Carter's upside is higher than that of junior Josh Smith, but Carter will have to fight off Smith to retain his starting spot when he returns to practice later this week after suffering a concussion.

With Smith out of the lineup the last week, the Sooners continue to test other offensive lineman behind Carter looking for a darkhorse to emerge. Will Mathis was the latest to try his luck at center today at practice.

Wes Sims continues to look hot and cold getting beat regularly in individual drills while performing better in team drills.

It looks more and more like freshman Brandon Jones will play at receiver this year. Jones worked with the one's and two's a lot today at practice and has been impressive when given the chance.

Antonio Perkins and Mark Clayton are still waging a battle for the starting punt return spot while OU has a list of three candidates to return kicks that includes Antwone Savage, Curtis Fagan and Perkins.

The Sooners will hold the final scrimmage open to the public tomorrow night beginning at 6 p.m. inside Memorial Stadium on Owen Field.

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