Ranking the Most Important on Defense: No. 7

Sooners Illustrated has made it to the final week of the most crucial defensive players countdown, so enter to see it.

No. 7:

Player: Jonathan Nelson

Position: Starting boundary corner

The rundown: Along with free safety Quinton Carter, Nelson's one of two starters in the secondary who's a senior. He finished the final three games of 2009 as a starter and certainly did not disappoint in performing that role. Nelson picked off three passes in those last three games and even racked up 11 tackles in OU's loss at Texas Tech. He ended the year with 46 tackles, ranking eighth on the team, just behind corners Dominique Franks and Brian Jackson at 47. And his three interceptions were just one behind the team leaders, Jackson and Carter, who both had four.

Expectations for 2010: The Sooners will rely on his experience big time at the corner position. And defensive backs coach Willie Martinez has said he can operate very well in both the corner and safety position, so that is an added plus for the secondary. Nelson should be a reliable boundary corner for OU during the 2010 campaign.

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