It doesn’t feel like it, but coach Bob Stoops was adamant that there’s no reason to expect Perine to drop off this season when addressing the media Tuesday morning at Big 12 media days.
“Samaje, it’s hard to improve on where he was, but I believe he will,” Stoops said. “He’s such a great, great worker, very humble guy that’s always hungry. He’s really trimmed up a bit. He probably lost five pounds, but he’s faster and still has the same strength and maybe more strength with another year in the weight room.”
Perine wasn’t on the radar at all heading into last season but has put himself on the national map going into this season. He’s the only legit candidate for the Sooners to be in the Heisman Trophy conversation and is a legit threat to win the Doak Walker Award for the best running back in the nation.
Obviously the highlight for Perine was his record-setting 427-yard performance in a win against Kansas. That one game, though, has almost overshadowed the rest of his season.
Perine rushed for 1,713 yards and 21 touchdowns and averaged 6.5 yards per carry. Slimmer but stronger seems to be the perfect recipe for another big year from Perine.