Carter Taking Advantage of Harris Absence

There's a lot of new blood in the defensive backfield for Oklahoma and Quinton Carter is among them. Coming off a redshirt season, Carter is getting a lot of snaps at strong safety this spring in the absence of Nic Harris. Read how Carter feels he's coming along in his third spring on campus.

One of the beneficiaries of Nic Harris sitting out this spring is Quinton Carter.

Carter is starting this spring at strong safety and is one of several newcomers in a defensive backfield that, as of now, returns only Lendy Holmes at free safety (Note: Harris, of course, will be back for fall practices).

In other words, Carter is one of several Sooners who have the opportunity to raise some eyebrows during spring practices.

"It's going pretty well," he said. "I still have a hamstring injury I'm trying to get over, but I'm out there being physical and just learning more technique and alignments."

Carter (6-0, 200) is coming off a redshirt season. That came after playing five games, all on special teams, as a freshman in 2006.

It was tough, he said, to redshirt, but Carter said he knew it would benefit him and the team in the long run.

"I just took it as a learning experience."

Carter said he likes to pattern himself after former hard-hitting Sooner Roy Williams and the late Sean Taylor, who played at Miami (Fla.).

"He's a hard-working guy, and a big hitter" Holmes said of his backfield mate. "He doesn't have a lot of experience, but he's out there working hard. He's got the speed, he's got the strength. Now he's just working hard trying to get a spot."

Carter, who is taking part in his third spring with the Sooners after graduating from Cheyenne High School in Las Vegas, Nev., a semester early, said he's just looking for a spot.

"I just want to have a presence in the defense, period," he said. "Whether it's strong, free, nickel, corner, whatever."

Carter said he's looking to improve his footwork this spring, as well as reading and reacting better to the quarterback. Of course, he knows if he messes up, DB coach Bobby Jack Wright will be there to let him know…and loudly.

"Different coaches have different coaching styles. He yells because he wants us to get used to the pressure of the game," Carter said. "He yells a lot but you've just got to take it stride and listen to what he's saying. You'll come out better."

Getting better is one of the reasons he came to OU.

"I was aware of the prestige of the school and I wanted to win games so I came here," he said.

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