Frank Shannon question looms for OU

As we've been tackling the biggest issues for OU going into spring, another one that's lingering is with linebacker Frank Shannon.

Sooners Illustrated has spent the last two weeks examining some of the biggest questions for Oklahoma heading into the 2015 season.

There is one that cannot be answered in the spring, but it’s something that will need to be addressed during this next month by the Sooners coaching staff.

Linebacker Frank Shannon is not allowed to participate during spring ball for OU. His one-year school suspension from an off the field incident ends in the middle of May. He is expected to return to the lineup for summer workouts and for the 2015 season.

But what does that mean for who is already on OU’s campus? The Sooners have a foundation with inside linebackers Dominique Alexander and Jordan Evans. The two were wet behind the ears during Shannon’s junior season, but they matured into OU’s answer as sophomores.

There’s no way to know right now the shape Shannon is in. Both physical and mental, it’s going to take a while to fully know what a year away from school, from the game has done to Shannon.

If he is able to regain top form, however, the question becomes what happens to OU’s linebacker rotation and alignment?

OU looks set right now with a 3-4 linebacker group of Eric Striker and Devante Bond/Ogbonnia Okoronkwo on the outside and Alexander and Evans manning the inside.

Nobody is going to complain about depth because OU will absolutely accept this Shannon “problem” if everything turns out well.

It will be one thing to watch going forward, for sure. Tim Kish has moved from coaching all of the linebackers to now just coaching the inside guys so Kish will be the guy calling the shots for Shannon.

Shannon was on the brink of becoming a superstar after a brilliant junior season where he led OU in tackles. The last year was obviously a rough one for Shannon. He’ll be back, but what will he bring to the table?

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