OU spring review: Interior linemen

Offensive line continues to be a question mark for OU following spring, but it doesn't mean there aren't worthy candidates.

Spring football is done at Oklahoma. The Sooners were able to get everything they could from 14 practices and the spring game and now the focus goes toward the 2015 season.

So what did we learn? Sooners Illustrated is going to take a position-by-position approach to see what we know now (or what we don’t know) going forward at OU.

Interior linemen

When talking offensive line for the Sooners, a lot of the attention was about replacing offensive tackles Tyrus Thompson and Daryl Williams.

With good reason, too, after what that duo had accomplished. But the interior linemen were hit just as bad with Adam Shead and Dionte Savage moving on.

Heading into spring, it was obvious Ty Darlington would be the man at center and Nila Kasitati is going to be one of the guards. Kasitati was banged up throughout spring, leaving the door open to a number of candidates for the other spot.

The most likely one is Jamal Danley, a juco transfer from East Mississippi CC. Danley was 24-0 with two national championships during his juco years, but there were reports of him being not as tough and physical during the spring.

That can change, of course, with a summer of conditioning, but he’s not the slam dunk choice. A couple of other names to be on the watch for are sophomore Jonathan Alvarez and redshirt freshman Alex Dalton.

Alvarez has felt like he is being groomed to replace Darlington at center for next season, but he has developed enough where you could make the case for Alvarez at guard.

There are incoming freshmen like Dominique Hearne and Cody Ford coming to campus, but it’s rare that an offensive lineman can make that leap.

Darlington solidified himself as the leader of the line, especially the way he handled himself during the SAE incident that nearly divided the team in March. And though Kasitati is incredibly quiet, he’s also very effective. So OU has two of its spots locked up. The third one, though, remains a waiting game.


Sooners Illustrated Top Stories