Spring Football: 4/10 Scrimmage Report

Stoops pleased with young receivers; Defensive line shines; Rawls impresses and much, much more...

For the first time since Friday, the Sooners scrimmaged the during the last hour of practice with the defense keeping the offense at bay for the most part.

"It was okay," said Stoops on Wednesday's scrimmage. "We did some good things on both sides of the ball. We were just too inconsistent on defense to make me totally happy. We were great at times and then we just didn't tackle well at others."

Sophomore receiver Brandon Jones returned to practice after spending the last week with the baseball team and made his presence felt right off the bat.

Jones took a slant pass from Brent Rawls, blazed by Jowahn Poteat and taunted the defense as he raced 80-yards for the first of two touchdown catches in the scrimmage. Rawls and Jones also hooked up for a 21-yard td connection.

Jones was by far the Sooners most impressive receiver today. He burned Poteat early in the scrimmage for a 22-yard pickup and was open all day in the back of the end zone against OU's defense in skeleton drills.

Both Jones and sophomore Will Peoples drew praise from Stoops after practice.

"(Brandon) Jones and (Will) Peoples looked good today," said Stoops. "They are beginning to make an impact on our football team."

At the beginning of the scrimmage, it was the defense that came to play. The Sooners' defensive tackles - Kory Klein and Juan Prishker - wreaked havoc on the middle of OU's o-line, that at one point gave up five straight sacks to the first team defense.

In a bit of a new look to start the scrimmage, OU teamed up Eric Bassey at safety with Michael Thompson and started three linebackers; Pasha Jackson, Lance Mitchell and Teddy Lehman.

Mitchell and Jackson started with the first team defense, but were yanked quickly and replaced with Clint Ingram and Russell Dennison after drawing the ire of Mike Stoops.

Getting benched lit a fire under Mitchell, who came back and played the best he has so far this spring.

Sophomore defensive end Dan Cody was OU's most dominant rusher in the inside drills, but was banged up and did not scrimmage. Tommie Harris, Derrick Strait and Brandon Everage also did not suit up and scrimmage today.

After scoring three times against the first team defense on Friday, the first team offense struggled today against OU's No. 1 defense.

On the last drive of the day, Nate Hybl led the Sooners down the field, hitting Curtis Fagan near the sideline for a big gain on third and long. Hybl also connected with Trent Smith, who had a big day, over the middle to convert another first down on the same drive.

Jared Estus had his best practice yet, using his speed to pick up several nice gains off of option plays. Estus helped the Sooners get the ball to the two-yard line after taking a hand-off and juking Lance Mitchell at the five on second down of OU's best drive. OU fluttered from there as Hybl incompleted two straight fade attempts to Smith in the endzone.

Danta Hickson also had his best effort yet as a Sooner with runs of 16- and 8-yards. The redshirt freshman looked good catching the ball out of the backfield as well, as he took a swing pass over the middle, and broke outside toward the sideline for a big gain.

Both Hybl and Rawls played really well today when they weren't getting harassed by OU's defensive line and blitzing Eric Bassey, who also stood out at times today with two sacks.

Rawls still continues to throw the ball downfield more then Hybl. He took over for Hybl on the first team for their second drive and drove them into the first team defenses' territory before the o-line bogged down and gave up several sacks. The big play in the drive was a beautiful pass from Rawls over the middle to a streaking Trent Smith for a gain of 30+ yards.

Dan Cody joined Adam Panter and Kory Klein in the battle for the deep snapper job. Klein struggled yesterday and it looks as if it's going to be a battle between Panter and Cody for the job. The Sooner coaches would like Cody to win the job because of his coverage possibilities after the snap. Blake Ferguson seemed to struggle punting the ball today.

OU returns to practice field again Friday at 3:45 pm and will hold a major scrimmage Saturday morning at 10 am.

Scrimmage Stats
Nate Hybl 6-10-0-72, Brent Rawls 7-9-0-188 (2 TDs)

Quentin Griffin: 3-43 Jerad Estus: 4-24 Donta Hickson: 1-16 Kejuan Jones: 2-2 Antwone Savage: 1 (-1)

Trent Smith: 4-70 Brandon Jones: 3-99 (2 TDs) Antwone Savage: 2-3 Donta Hickson: 1-39 Curtis Fagan: 1-32 James Moses: 1-14 Will Peoples: 1-3

Sadiki Wilson (4), Lance Mitchell (3), Teddy Lehman (4), Andre Woolfolk (2), Michael Thompson (3), Jowahn Poteat (1), Eric Bassey (4 tackles, 1 sack), Avery Shine (1), Matt McCoy (3 tackles, 1 pass break up), Russell Dennison (1), Clint Ingram (1), Jimmy Wilkerson (2), Jonathan Jackson (5 tackles, 3 sacks), Juan Prishker (2), Vershon Sublet (2 tackles, 1 sack), Kory Klein (2 tackles, 2 sacks), Lynn McGruder (2)

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