It’s about that time again. Expectations are high. Questions abound. Yep, it’s time for Oklahoma spring football.
The Sooners, coming off an 11-2 season where they won the Big 12 championship and the Sugar Bowl, will no doubt be expected to be in the national championship and playoff hunt once again.
The calendar turns to March. The page officially turns to 2017, and although things look rosy for OU, there are still plenty of unanswered questions going forward.
What are those? That’s where Sooners Illustrated comes in. We’ll take a look at one pressing question each day leading up to OU starting spring practice March 21. The spring game is April 8.
Sooners Illustrated’s 17-for-2017
How good can Caleb Kelly be?
No longer have to bang the drum about the lack of playing time for Caleb Kelly. That is out the window with the way the freshman played during the second half of the season.
Now entering his sophomore campaign, what’s the ceiling for Kelly? Is there one? When you watched what Kelly was able to do in OU’s win vs. Auburn in the Sugar Bowl, you saw someone starting to piece it all together.
He won’t be a finished product in the spring, but perhaps we’ll get to see what’s next in the toolbox as he continues to improve.
He finished with 36 tackles, three for loss and one sack. Don’t be surprised if he surpasses those totals in non-conference action alone in 2017.
A former five-star prospect, Kelly simply had to find his footing in Norman through the first half of the season. He’s someone who can play a 4-3 defensive front or a 3-4 because he’s so versatile in what he can do.
Kelly can just as easy as rush the quarterback as he can drop back in coverage against a running back or tight end. There’s no spot on the field where he’s not comfortable.
It’s asking a lot for a sophomore to emerge as a leader, but Kelly has that type of infectious personality that makes him perfect for the spot if he’s ready.
A full offseason of conditioning combined with his work ethic is a scary thought for opponents and gives OU fans plenty of reasons to smile heading into 2017.