Oklahoma opens spring practice on March 5 with the annual Red-White game set for April 9.
The Sooners will also hold pro day on March 9 for all departing players. But there are questions abound regarding the Sooners’ outlook for next year. Even coming off an 11-2 season, the Big 12 championship and a berth in the College Football Playoff, the Sooners still have holes that need to be filled.
Over the next week, Sooners Illustrated’s Justin Hite and Bob Przybylo take a look at five major questions surrounding Oklahoma. Here’s one of the most pressing questions:
Which returning wide receiver(s) will make the leap?
OU is bringing in some good talent for the 2016 receiving class, but they’re not getting to Norman until the summer.
So the spring presents a major opportunity for the returning scholarship players to put a little distance between themselves and the freshmen arriving.
The talent is there, nobody is disputing that. The question is why hasn’t any of these guys already on campus made the jump into becoming one of the top targets?
The list is a long one and the opportunity is absolutely there with senior leaders Sterling Shepard and Durron Neal now moved on.
There shouldn’t just be one guy to watch but several as spots have opened up on the outside and at the slot position.
Will somebody like Jordan Smallwood finally stay healthy enough to make a real run? Is it time for the 2014 guys like Dallis Todd, Jeffery Mead and Michiah Quick to assert themselves? Or have the younger guys like A.D. Miller, John Humphrey and Dahu Green already made their imprint and passed everybody else up?
OU’s receiving bunch is going to be led by Dede Westbrook and Jarvis Baxter and has added a jolt with former Penn State receiver Geno Lewis, but more are going to be needed.
Lincoln Riley and Dennis Simmons want to use a nice rotation of guys. They realized last year down the stretch they couldn’t do that and stuck with the most reliable. It’s a second chance to try to make that rotation happen this time around.