Post Spring Breakdown: CBs

Previously, Sooners Illustrated analyzed the linebacker situation for 2010-11, so now it's time to examine the secondary, starting with the cornerbacks.

Starting field cornerback—Demontre HurstHurst is a player that really impacted the Sooners in some positive ways last year as a freshman in the special teams game. He finished fourth for OU with nine tackles in his duties there. Hurst also came up with a huge 15-yard sack in the second quarter of the Red River Rivalry game last year against Texas. This year as the starter, needless to say, he has a much bigger role. Hurst proved as much as he can in the Spring Game that he can handle that role, playing solid coverage on the Sooner wide receivers and finishing with six tackles. He should give them a good option at field CB.

Backup field cornerback—Gabe LynnLynn hasn't seen any live playing time because he redshirted last season. But at 6-foot-0, 186 lb., Lynn has great speed, running a 4.50 40-yard dash, and he is a skilled guy that could step in and contribute, as evidenced by his five tackles and interception in the Red-White game.

Starting boundary cornerback—Jonathan NelsonAlso a reserve last year for the majority of the season, Nelson broke into a starting spot for last three games, where he especially stood out with 11 tackles and a pick against the Red Raiders of Texas Tech in Lubbock, Texas. This year, then, he obviously brings the most experience to the group as the only senior corner. OU head coach Bob Stoops said that experience has allowed him to develop all the tools as well as utilize his quickness to play at either the corner or safety spot. So, here's a leader for this position.

Backup boundary cornerback—Jamell FlemingHere's another guy that fits into the traditional D-back, special teams combination role. Fleming has played for a couple of years on the special teams group, and he excelled there last year, racking up nine tackles to rank second on the team. Fleming got better in the spring, so he should be a solid guy to back up Nelson.

Without last year's two starting corners, it's hard to rank them as in great shape, but they are in a good position nonetheless.


1. In great shape

2. Probably in good shape

3. Questionable

4. Not in good shape at all

Next up is the safety portion of the defensive backs breakdown.

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