OU outlook: Wide receiver

Spring football is right around the corner so Sooners Ilustrated is going to get you set with an early look at 2014 for OU.

The 2013 season is in the rear view mirror for Oklahoma. And while 2014 isn't quite here just yet, never too early to start talking how the team is shaping up.

With spring football less than two weeks away, here's an early look at how the Sooners are shaping up at all positions.

Wide receiver

The starter:

Sterling Shepard. The only guarantee is Shepard is going to be the guy in 2014. And he'll be the most targeted guy by opposing defense. No more Kenny Stills. No more Jalen Saunders. The attention will be on Shepard, who has delivered huge numbers in his first two seasons.

Next in line:

Ready for the real logjam? Here we go. Assuming OU goes with a three-wide set, who's going to start and where? It feels like OU is loaded with slot receivers and not many lined out wide.

Shepard's partner in crime was supposed to be Durron Neal. The first two seasons have been underwhelming, but all of that could be erased with a fantastic junior season.

The departure of Trey Franks also opens the door for somebody like Derrick Woods or Austin Bennett to make their impact. It was only one catch against Alabama, but the Woods reception said a lot about the confidence the coaches have in him even if he doesn't have monster numbers.

Don't forget about Jordan Smallwood. The redshirt freshman receiver was making huge noise before his foot injury derailed his 2013 season. And K.J. Young was sensational in the scout receiver role for the team last season.

The 2014 class is loaded with tall guys, except for that shifty four-star prospect Michiah Quick. The future looks incredibly bright for Quick, but the present might not be too bad, either.

On the radar:

The tall guys and who will emerge from them. Between Dannon Cavil, Mark Andrews, Dallis Todd and Jeffery Mead, who is going to step out and step up? Cavil obviously seems like he has the advantage having already been on campus.

But the three-headed monster heading to Norman this summer are all highly regarded receivers that aren't just filling up a depth chart. No question the wide receiver race across the board is going to be something to watch all spring and heading into the fall.

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