NORMAN, Okla. — Veteran Sooner assistant coach Bobby Jack Wright has added Special Teams Coordinator to his list of titles along with Recruiting Coordinator along with Defensive Ends Coach. Without question, Coach Wright is very important to the success of the Sooner football team, and he recently he sat down with OUInsider.com for the two minute drill.
JH: With Antonio Perkins setting NCAA record it was a pretty good week last weekend to be the Special Teams Coordinator wasn't it?
BJW: "Man, isn't that the truth. There has been a lot of great days in the special teams since we have been at Oklahoma and I am sure people through the years who have seen a lot of great return men at the University of Oklahoma, but they have never seen a day like that, because it was an NCAA record."
JH: Perkins is getting a lot of attention because of the record, including a feature on him on ESPN's College Gameday, which is great for him isn't it?
BJW: "That is right. That is great for Antonio personally, because of the great day that he had. It is also a great day for the guys on that punt return unit with him and the pride they take in it and the effort they put into it to spring him on those things."
JH: For the last couple of weeks you said that you were just a fraction away from breaking a big one.
BJW: "The thing that is so funny about all the special teams for anybody is that when you are struggling it is usually one guy here or one guy there. It is one guy who misses a block or a guy busts an assignment. In special teams it is not the 11 man unit, but it is just one guy here or one guy there that causes the entire unit to break down. The same thing was the case in our punt protection for a couple of weeks. Each case it was somebody different and certainly as coaches we understood the fact that we had some problems there and we were going to spend a lot of time to get that corrected. You were able to see that we were able to get those corrected and everything clicked for us against UCLA."
JH: How do you feel your defensive ends are playing?
BJW: "I am really pleased with them through four games anyway. They are playing on as high a level as any defensive ends in the country. In the games I have been watching, I don't see anybody playing any better than Dan Cody, Jonathan Jackson or Larry Birdine. I am very pleased with them and if we can stay healthy and continue to improve, then I think they will be three guys that are as good as anybody out there."
JH: I guess it is safe to say that Birdine is living up to his expectations?
BJW: "Well, he is and he is exactly what we thought he would be. He is still learning and he is extremely talented and loves to play the game. He always gives great effort, plays with intensity and plays so physical. He is exactly what you would like to have at defensive end. However, you have to temper that with the fact that he has only played in four football games his entire career and there is a learning curve and a learning process that he is still going through. He still has to learn the defense and all that goes with it. However, he has a pretty good grasp of it and he plays so extremely hard and with such great enthusiasm that he is a fun guy to coach I promise you."
JH: How do you feel recruiting is going?
BJW: "I think it is going well. We are probably a little further along right now than at any other time since we have been here. So, we think it is going well, but we still feel there are a lot of good football players out there that are giving us consideration. They are lining up visits to the University of Oklahoma and we feel very good about how things are going."
JH: There is more parity than ever in college football, so is it safe to say that you have to be ready to play every Saturday?
BJW: "As coaches we always say that. We guard against let downs and we preach that to our players. We talk about it a lot to the media. We are no different than coaches were 25 to 30 years ago that were saying the same things. You are exactly right, because every Saturday you better come ready to play. Any time you are not playing on edge, or not playing with your hair on fire, then somebody else has a chance to beat you. There are good players on every team now-a-days and if your squad goes out and plays flat and the other squad is on fire that day then you are going to have a chance to get beat."
JH: How are your young players doing?
BJW: "Our two freshman — John Williams and Alonzo Dotson — are doing great. They are exactly what you are looking for in defensive ends with their size and speed and both are very talented. John's motor is always going and Alonzo plays with a great poise about him. Both have a chance because they are extremely intelligent football players who already have a great understanding about the game. They are not ready to play for us yet, but we look forward to the day that they are, because we think both can be good players for us."
Two Minute Drill: Bobby Jack Wright
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