Stoops Talks NSD and More

OU Head man Bob Stoops met with the media on Wednesday to discuss his 2010 recruiting class, and he also talked about some issues surrounding the state of his team, the coaching staff, and the health of Sam Bradford.

The Sooners announced 28 football signees—with one to come—on National Signing Day, including a plethora of four star recruits and four five star recruits, not including wide receiver Kenny Stills, who has yet to be cleared.

"It's an exciting day here, our 2010 recruiting class [and] visiting about that," said OU head coach Bob Stoops. "It really was a great morning for us. You know, it's always fun when you have all your signees and all your letters in by 11:30."

"Actually we still have one that we're pending, one recruit that's out there that's pending some, that we're still working with. I can't name him by name, but we're still working through the clearinghouse in regards to his eligibility here, and [we're] hoping that that gets resolved as soon as possible."

Stoops said he's very impressed with the class, mentioning there was "no drama," and he couldn't be more thrilled about the group.

For more on the group, here's what Stoops had to say about several of the recruits.

On five-star QB Blake Bell—Blake Bell's talented. He's a talented guy when you look at the way he can throw the football. He's an excellent pocket quarterback which, you know, is a staple of what we do. But he also, I think, Blake is more athletic maybe than any quarterback we've signed as far as being able to pull the ball down and run. He's a guy that I believe is going to be big enough, being 6-6, he's 220 now, he'll be 250 easily, that you don't mind running six or seven times a game.

On five-star RB Brennan Clay—Brennan's a very personable, talented young guy, and he has been a big help with us, just his attitude, his voice and, you know, his ability to communicate with everybody.

On five-star WR Justin McCay—Justin's, just his physical presence [is incredible]. I was up there a week ago watching him practice basketball, and their team I believe is undefeated. Their basketball team is working their way to the state championship. And, you know, he's a big guy. I hadn't seen him in awhile and forgot how big he was. He's all of 6-3, almost 6-4. He's about 205 lbs., which, you know, he'll grow on top of that after basketball season. And he is a very physical guy that can go after the football, and he reminds me of a Malcolm Kelly type guy when you look at his body frame and how physical he is and on top of it his ability to run, so he's a strong presence out there at receiver.

On five-star LB Corey Nelson—Well, just what you said, his ability, the way he runs, and he's a really good with seeing as an outside SAM type backer that he runs well. You can put him out in space where he covers. You can blitz him. You know, he's physical and big enough to bring in to play outside a tight end. So he does all of those things when you look at his size and his ability to run.

On four-star TE Austin Haywood—Definitely [we can split him out like Jermaine Gresham], he runs that way. He's a really physical, bigger guy, can run, reminds you of, I hear from a lot of Coach Switzer's assistants, reminds you of a Keith Jackson-type guy.

On four-star OLB Tony Jefferson—When you watch him run the ball as a running back, he's talented and special, but he loves to play defense. And then you watch him hit people, and he has a lot to him, you know, when he hits you, and he has a great feel for it. So we're hoping that will continue because he has had an exceptional high school career.

On three-star TE/H Trey Millard—Trey Millard, to us, is one of our best athletes we've signed. You know how I love the Matt Clapp's, the Brody Eldridge's, the guys that can play fullback, can play H-back and move around. You put Trey out there. He catches the ball well. He watches highlights of the running backs. He's a big back, and you can put him at running back, too, so Trey can do a lot of things. And really with that frame to see how talented he is and the way he moves, we love guys like that.

In addition to these recruits, there's some other big news around the Sooner football program.

Willie Martinez, who was the defensive coordinator for Georgia from 2005-09, will now serve as the defensive backs coach, while Bobby Jack Wright will go back to coaching the defensive ends.

"Willie is an outstanding coach and someone with a tremendous background in our profession," Stoops said. "His experience is very impressive and he will contribute a lot of very good things to our program. And not only is he fine secondary coach, he's a good recruiter with ties in Florida and a number of other places."

Also, there are a number of guys that will miss spring practice.

Obviously, defensive tackle Adrian Taylor, but center Ben Habern, guard Jarvis Jones and running back Jonathan Miller are also set to sit out in the spring.

Tight end Eric Mensik as well as linebacker Tom Wort should be healthy for spring practice.

And Heisman quarterback Sam Bradford appears to be progressing fine in time for the combine at the end of the month and April's draft.

"I talked to him last week, and he was real excited about how he felt," Stoops said. "He said he's not had any setbacks. He said it feels, in his words, ‘great.' And he's throwing the football, and he said that day he had thrown about 30 passes, and he said it felt good. [There were] no problems, so he's just training away and rehabbing and feels great about the way it's going."

Spring practice for the Sooners is set to begin March 8.


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