Friday, December 11, 2009

The way too early 2010 depth chart.

Oklahoma has heard some good news over the last few days while the Sooners have been preparing to face Toby Gerhart and the Stanford Cardinal in the Sun Bowl. Almost everyone suffering from anything other than a season ending injury is back and there has been some positive talk about play makers coming back to spend their Junior and Senior years in Norman.

TBB presents to you, the way too early 2010 depth chart.

QB: Landry Jones
RB: Demarco Murray* / Jermie Calhoun/ Jonathan Miller
FB: Brandon Crow
WR: Ryan Broyles* / Cameron Kenny
WR: DeJuan Miller / Brandon Caleb
TE: Trent Ratterree / James Hanna
T: Donald Stephenson
LG: Stephen Good
C: Ben Habern
RG: Tyler Evans
T: Jarvis Jones / Cory Brandon

DE: Jeremy Beal / David King
DT: Adrian Taylor* / Justin Chaisson
DT: Jamarcus McFarland / Stacy McGee
DE: Frank Alexander / RJ Washington
Will: Travis Lewis* / Austin Box
Mike: Tom Wort
Sam: Ronnell Lewis
FCB: DeMontre Hurst / Gabe Lynn
SS: Sam Proctor / Joseph Ibiloye
FS: Quinton Carter
CB: Jonathan Nelson / Jamell Flemming

*Eligible to declare for the NFL

Interviews from practice have told nothing but positives for DeMarco Murray, Travis Lewis, Dominique Franks, and Ryan Broyles all submitting paperwork to the league but likely coming back for at least one more year.

Heisman Picks and Sooner tid-bits.

The Boomer Blog has been offline for some time due to the fact that we have been dealing with a season of unfortunate circumstances, but we're back. The Heisman ceremony is tomorrow night and there have been some recent tid-bits of information during bowl game preparation that Sooner fans will find very interesting

It's Heisman time...

Let's be honest, this years Heisman race is nothing like it was hyped up to be in August, and we're not just talking about Sooner fans. Sam Bradford went down early, real early. And it's a sad state of events for the most coveted individual trophy in all of sports when a guy that missed the first three games of the season could have easily pulled himself back into the race if it weren't for re-injuring himself in Dallas. Tim Tebow has played himself out of the "greatest player of all time" discussion, and Colt McCoy has been outplayed by a few underclassmen with less than stellar supporting casts.

In the eyes of TBB, there has been only one player in the nation who has consistently played at, and many times beyond, a Heisman level. Luckily this Heisman bill will be presented in print so there is no chance for what would surely be a slaughtering of the young DT's name.

1. Ndamukong Suh: DT Nebraska
- I said it during the Missouri game and I'll say it again. If you can make Gerald McCoy and Terrance Cody irrelevant you deserve a bigger trophy than the Heisman. Suh has played big in every game this year for the Huskers, and quite honestly put a sub-par Nebraska team into games they had no business being a part of. In fact, if Suh would have played a season like this last year TBB would have voted him first, over Sam Bradford.
2. Toby Gerhart: RB Stanford
- Whether you saw it or not, Gerhard was the most consistently great offensive player in '09. And it is the firm belief of this blog that the Cardinal running back shouldn't suffer for the fact that his games weren't televised.
3. Mark Ingram: RB Alabama
- Ingram played his biggest games on the largest stages this year, including a ridiculous performance against one of the top defensive units in the nation during the SEC Championship. Sure, the guy had 5 games with under 100 yards, but he still deserves to be number three on this list.
4. Kellen Moore: QB Boise State
- Kellen Moore was the best quarterback in the nation this year, and after playing an entire season of mistake free football he will have nothing to show for it. The Boise State QB finished the season with 3325 passing yards and a 64.6 completion percentage with only three interceptions to his 39 touchdowns. Moore wasn't even invited to the Heisman ceremony which is a little ridiculous after looking at his numbers. Looks like Moore gets to play the role of Graham Harrell this season. But we all know who really shouldn't have been invited...
5. Colt McCoy: QB Texas
- Colt McCoy did have some stellar football games this season, but nothing in comparison to the big wins and the big numbers of '08. And putting up big numbers in game like Oklahoma State, Baylor, and Kansas is really not very impressive considering he was out played by Landry Jones (FR), Jerrod Johnson (Soph.), and only looked slightly better than Zach Lee in the Big 12 Championship. It's been a great season for the Longhorns but people would be a lot more excited about the BCS Championship game if they were playing now like they did last year.

Honorable Mention
Tim Tebow: QB Florida
- Tim obviously gave his heart and soul this season as can be seen by his whimpering after getting his butt kicked in the SEC Championship game. Maybe if Florida had Percy Harvin America wouldn't have had to see Tebow drowning in his own tears. This is a man who has two National Championship rings, a Heisman trophy, and will be finishing his career playing for one of the better BCS bowls. Nobody feels sorry for you Tim.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Recruiting: Final Preditions

Yes, "The Boomer Blog" is back after what can be considered a very disappointing and intentional hiatus. Your Oklahoma Sooners are now sitting at a record of 5-4 and you're looking at a season that could potentially end without a bowl game. 

Instead, this blog is gettin' a little pick me up. We're talking recruiting, which happens to be the only real positive coming out of this season.

The Sooners are set to take a full slate of high school superstars, and TBB is going to fill you in on who Oklahoma has already rounded up, as well as guys we expect will be joining the class of 2010.

In true Boomer Blog fashion, we'll be starting off with the guys Oklahoma will be missing out on in this recruiting class. These are kids that currently hold offers from Oklahoma and are seriously considering the Sooners, but for one reason or another won't be spending their college years in Norman.

Joshua Shaw: 
Defensive Back
Palmdale, California

Shaw came in to this year as a relative unknown with great potential but has since watched his own recruitment absolutely explode. Shaw now holds offers from the entire Pac-10, as well as numerous big-time programs from across the country (Oklahoma, Florida, Notre Dame and Ohio State). Unfortunately, Oklahoma has backed off of Shaw's recruitment due to filling defensive back slots as well as what is probably a lack of interest on Shaw's part as well.

Seantrel Henderson: 
Offensive Tackle
Saint Paul, Minnesota

Oklahoma currently sits in a list of Henerson's top six schools, but things aren't looking as promising for Oklahoma as they once did. The nations almost undisputed top recruit has canceled his visiting date for Norman and will now only take visits to Notre Dame, USC, Ohio State, and Minnesota. 

Whoever lands Henderson will be taking one of the most college ready prospects in recent memory. Henderson stands around 6'8 and weighs in at 300 pounds, but more importantly has matured to the point where he will be ready to immediately take snaps at the next level.

Victor Burnett: 
Inside Linebacker
Culver City, California

Burnett was in town for an Oklahoma win over Kansas State a few weeks ago and the visit seemed to go well. At the same time we at TBB have a feeling that things between the Sooners and the young linebacker from Culver City, California won't work out in the end.

It's difficult to say in a situation like this but to be blunt about the it we believe Burnett is feeling it will be much more difficult to see the field in Norman then it will be to do the same at Washington or Arizona. Burnett is a good player but the young depth in Norman at linebacker is significant. So much so that we believe Burnett and the Sooners will eventually part ways.

George Uko: 
Defensive Tackle
Chino, California

George Uko is a player that Oklahoma would be lucky to pick up late in the recruiting process, and TBB believes that Uko is one of those players that Oklahoma won't be giving up on until the very end. With that being said Uko had yet to set up an official visit to Norman, an idea that he has been toying with since first getting involved with Oklahoma. OU currently sits among Uko's top five teams along with California, Tennessee, Oregon, and USC. But, we suspect that Uko deciding not to take an official visit when he still has two available will be a, "thanks, but no thanks" situation for the Sooners.

Throughout the Sooners 2010 recruitment there have been two players who have been more of a mystery than any other target. (Change) Jackson Jeffcoat and Kyle Prater are guys that clearly have Oklahoma on the brain, but unfortunately nobody out there in the recruiting world really knows what is going on with their recruitment...

Jackson Jeffcoat: 
Defensive End
Plano, Texas (Plano West)
Nobody, and we mean nobody, has any idea what the young defensive end from Plano West will be doing come January. Jackson is the son of Jim Jeffcoat, former Dallas Cowboy, and for these reasons has handled his recruitment professionally, playing everything very close to the vest.
"The Boomer Blog" is familiar with a few sources from Plano West (one in particular who is very close to the family) and we still have no idea what the hell is going on.

What we do know about Jackson:
- Very family oriented individual who's sister will be playing basketball for the Sooners and who's father is currently on Kevin Sumlin's coaching staff at the University of Houston.
- Jim Jeffcoat has publicly stated he would rather not have his son play under him at Houston, but we doubt that really makes a difference to Jackson.
- Due to his strong family ties Jackson would like to stay relatively close to home, which in theory would eliminate USC.

We at TBB believe that the nature of the Oklahoma program fits Jackson's personality well and that having his sister on campus couldn't possibly be hurting our odds. And with wanting to keep his close proximity to home and his father preferring not to coach Jackson, we believe the Sooners are in a great position to pick up a guy who has been talked about since his Freshman year in high school. (Fingers crossed)

Kyle Prater:
Wide Receiver
Hillside, Illinois

Prater is currently a soft verbal to USC but from what TBB has heard about the situation this won't be for much longer. For one reason or another Prater and his family have realized that USC isn't the place for Kyle and will be looking elsewhere for school.

In fact, Kyle Prater is scheduled to be in Norman this coming Saturday for the game against Texas A&M. This will be the second time Kyle and his family have visited Norman this year and the first trip went well enough to leave Sooner fans thinking positively about the situation.

The problem TBB has with the Prater situation is this. Why would one of the most talented receivers in the country de-commit from a program like USC, and instead choose a program like Oklahoma if his reason for de-committing from USC is that he wants to stay close to home. Doesn't make sense, right? In all likelyhood, Prater will (excuse the bluntness) choose to waste his talents in Champaign Illinois under whoever replaces Ron Zook.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Final Predictions: Recruiting (The Goods)

Here now, are the guys TBB expects you to see donning the crimson and cream in the near future. None are yet commits, but TBB has reason to believe that all will be Sooners in the near future.

Darius White:
Wide Receiver
Ft. Worth, Texas (Dunbar)

There is no better place to start than with Darius White on the list of hopefully commitments. Darius is a flat out star at receiver and looks as though he will be able to jump onto the playing field just as soon as he learns the offense. Sooner fans should breathe a huge sigh of relief as their prayers for a receiver are about to be answered in a big way.

Reasons to feel good about Darius:
- The alleged burned bridges in Austin. We're still not exactly sure what happened with White and UT, but the Longhorns supposedly gave White's cousin, Rashad Favors (who was supposedly being recruited by Texas as well), a name tag that read "Guest of Darius White." TBB doesn't think that went over well with the family oriented White.
- Darius' mother and grandmother would prefer White to attend Oklahoma over Texas. This is beginning to sound like the McFarland situation of last year.
-  His cousin, Rashad Favors, is already an Oklahoma commit. Now we suspect that Rashad knows more than he's letting on about what he knows of Darius. But if it wasn't good, we'd probably know a lot more than we do now.

Kenny Stills:
Wide Receiver
Carlsbad, California

There has not been a better sign all season long than future Sooner running back Brennan Clay. Clay, another California native, is convincing OU targets left and right that they should be taking a harder look at the Oklahoma program. And they're doing it. Kenny Stills has been a target of the Clay recruiting method for some time now, and it seems to be paying off in a big way.

Stills is another talent that Oklahoma will be hosting for the match-up against Texas A&M, and coming from the positive reports the Sooners have been receiving a commitment from the California receiver wouldn't be out of the question. It's looking like Stills definitely wants to go out of state, and since reports say that Kenny has lost a little interest in Florida, Oklahoma only has Penn State and Tennessee to compete with for his commitment. 

Tony Jefferson:
Chula Vista, California

If you thought the recruiting job by Brennan Clay on Kenny Stills was good, you're going to enjoy hearing about how he turned Tony Jefferson. At one point during the season the Sooners were all but out of the race for one of the most talented safety prospects in the country. In fact, Oklahoma was not even going to receive an official visit from a player the Sooners once thought they had a shot with. But after a few weeks of recruiting from Clay and a visit to Norman for the Kansas State game it's looking like Oklahoma has done more than catch Jefferson's eye. Tony was even thinking about making a commitment while in Norman that weekend.

Clay, Stills, and Jefferson are already toying with the idea of calling themselves the "California Three." Sounds to us like a commitment from Jefferson is just around the corner.

Jefferson also had impressive numbers running the ball in high school and could become a good option for the Oklahoma ground game in the future.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Mid Season Bowl Preditions

It's about that time. The time of the year when college football looks far to into the future to predict who we'll be seeing in the BCS bowl games. Who will represent the SEC? Will Texas finish out their schedule unscathed? And, of course, what bowl will the USC Trojans be playing? All of your questions are answered with much speculation right here on "The Boomer Blog."

BCS National Championship
Alabama v. USC
- The prediction is bold. How could a team that left Seattle with a loss make it to the big show? Well, maybe they shouldn't. But TBB has a good feeling that a currently suspect Texas team won't make it through the rest of their schedule without a loss, and we're not even talking about the Big 12 Championship. The Longhorns have looked suspect against Texas Tech, Colorado and an Oklahoma squad who's only strength might be their defense. USC has had quality wins against Ohio State, California and Notre Dame. If you give the most talented team in the nation an entire season to impress they're going to do it.
- Alabama, on the other hand, looks to be the best team in college football, save a few struggles here and there by junior quarterback Greg McElroy. Mark Ingram has set a pace for the Heisman presentation in New York and the defense has remained one of the most dominant in the nation.

Tostitos Fiesta Bowl
Texas v. TCU
- This match-up is tricky. Will it be TCU or Boise State in the Fiesta Bowl? Well we're going to make a stab in the dark here and say that Boise will be awarded the Sugar Bowl with previously strong showings in recent years. TCU will finish undefeated with a gripe for a playoff but should be happy with a chance to prove their legitimacy against a strong Texas squad.

Rose Bowl
Iowa v. Oregon?
- Iowa is looking like the class of the Big 10 (whatever that means). The Hawkeyes still have quality games left on the schedule with Michigan State and Ohio State. But losing only one of these games will all but lock Iowa for the Rose Bowl. 
- This is where a monkey wrench is going to get thrown into the system. The traditional match-up here would be between the best available Big 10 and Pac 10 schools. If that scenario holds expect Oregon to make a trip to Pasadena as they have some real opportunities to climb the rankings before December.

Sugar Bowl
Florida v. Boise State
- TBB would bet the farm that Florida will be making a trip to the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans. This simply isn't the Florida team of last year, but there is no doubt that if the Gators do go down it will be to 'Bama and only 'Bama. The Gators will win out and take one on the chest in the SEC Championship game putting them on path for a match-up in the big easy.
- Boise State doesn't have an opportunity to lose, which is why they will be on the outside looking in on the BSC National Championship. A win over Oregon doesn't make you a national championship team, Sorry Boise. They will still be able to enjoy a quality bowl and maybe make for an interesting game if they provide the nation with more BCS trickeration. 

Orange Bowl
Miami v. Cincinnati
- Miami will represent a lowly ACC conference against another surprising Cincinnati squad. Out of a handful of probable bad match-ups this might prove to be the best game of the lot. Nobody can say that Miami isn't fun to watch and college football is about to realize that Cincinnati is the Cinderella of the 2009 season.

Texas losing a game this season might be the worst possible thing that could happen to the BCS this year. Iowa, Boise State and TCU have more than a good chance to finish their seasons without a loss. Thus, all three will have a serious problem with being passed up by a team that lost the Washington. Unfortunately none of these teams scheduled OOC and will have to fall on their own sword for that reason.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Hard Times Hit Norman

What happened last weekend in Miami has raised already lingering questions about the players, the coaching staff and the Sooners will to win a football game. Oklahoma has folded like a lawn chair in every big game they've played in the last three years. And in the minds of Sooner fans, games against BYU and Miami this season are a sign that Oklahoma's big game blunders are far from over.

As Brent Musburger said in the third quarter of the Miami game, "Things have gone awry for Oklahoma."And Although the quote did not apply to the last three years of Oklahoma football, it might as well have. Things with the Sooners have been "awry" for some time now. Nobody needs to be reminded of that.

"The Boomer Blog" is not normally one to call out coaches because in most cases said coach is the coach for a reason, because they know football better than anybody. But in this instance, as well as others over the past three years, better play calling by Kevin Wilson absolutely would have won the game. And although we know that Wilson was playing conservatively at Miami because he was nervous about an inexperienced Landry Jones being picked off, there comes a time in every game you're losing where you have to find your balls, cross your fingers and pray for the best.

The funny thing about the offense against Miami is that when Wilson trusted Jones to take care of the ball and make plays, Oklahoma drove the ball for its only two scores of the game. Once in the first quarter and then again in the third when the Sooners looked like they were ready to break out of an offensive slump. 

Landry Jones has proven time and again that he can get up to the line of scrimmage and create the tempo by simply running the offense set in place. But Wilson refuses to trust the young quarterback, like he really had a choice. Just like he did at Texas Tech in 2007 with Joey Halzle.

But how quickly do Sooner fans forget that Kevin Wilson was the recipient of the 2008 Frank Broyles award? Without Wilson last season this team wouldn't have even been in contention for a Big 12 championship. 

Venables is in the same boat. The Sooners defensive coordinator seemed to have all the answers in the first three games, but apparently a good offense was the remedy to set things back to normal for Oklahoma. One thing remains constant in Venables' defense; when it really matters they can't make a stop. That's the absolute bottom line. 

Miami was eight for thirteen on third down conversions and in a number of those conversions not only did they move the chains, but were able to move the chains a considerable distance further than they needed to to pick up a new set of downs.

In the humble opinion of "The Boomer Blog," playing the blame game doesn't stop with the coaches. This season Sooner fans have seen two lackluster efforts by players that more than likely put Stoops and Co. in a bad position to begin with. 

Dominique Franks' blown coverage against Miami is a perfect example of the mistakes that Oklahoma players have been making since kickoff in Dallas. If there was a highlight reel of the top ten worst coverage blunders of all time Franks' man coverage on Graig Cooper would likely take honors at the one spot. It cost Oklahoma the game, period.

Trent Williams' leg whip in the fourth quarter hurt the Sooners as well. Oklahoma was in four down territory, but after a costly personal foul Wilson was left with a fourth and long that was considerably less manageable than the fourth and five or less he was hoping to end up with.

What is going on with the Sooners is more complex than anything you can put on paper, more than just skin deep. It has nothing to do with the ability of the players or the game plan set out by the coaches. And that is exactly what's frustrating Sooner Nation. 

The problem is that you can't put your finger on the problem. The Sooners are a ship with too many holes. As soon as you patch one up another breaks way.

But if you want to keep it plain and simple Oklahoma is playing without passion. And lighting a fire under a player's asses that have had a poor precedent set before them is probably the most difficult problem coaches have to deal with in college football. Especially if said coaches might also require the services of said fire.

This is nothing more than an overly talented and completely uninspired football team that is doing nothing but going through the motions and expecting to win football games off skill alone.

Unfortunately, none of us "outsiders" know what's really going on here. We don't know what's going on in the locker room and can't see what goes on behind the scenes. That includes the media. Anybody you hear talking about the real problem with Oklahoma is surely just some "knowledgeable fan" with little more than his own speculation to back up his argument. 
So, in regards to this season for all you self-righteous Oklahoma fans out there "The Boomer Blog" has a little advice for you. Get the hell over it. 

Stop being that Oklahoma fan that says, "I can't watch college football when my team is losing." Quit being that guy complaining about how this team, "Should be undefeated." Because if there is one thing that could make this team and this season any worse it has to be the incessant bitching currently coming out of the city of Norman. 

We get it! Believe us when we say that we're just as frustrated as you. But whining and complaining and "what if" scenarios aren't going to undo what has already been done. Those games are over, baby.

Instead, as real college football fans, and more importantly a real fan of your University, we should simply be excited that it's still football season. Because let's be honest, basketball is second rate.

Only time will tell if this OU team will decide to pull their jocks up and play with a little pride. But we're not counting on it.

Here's to hoping for a little Sooner Magic to finish this season out.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Post Miami

Sooner Nation,

Over the next day or so "The Boomer Blog" will be collecting thoughts on a team that simply seems like it doesn't have the cojones to win a game late. We know it's nothing less than disheartening watching this team and these coaches let games get away from them, we know. In the next few days TBB will be putting a column together that encompasses all that is going wrong with this team... so it's probably going to be a damn long column.

Baylor is coming up and since Robert Griffin has gone down with an ACL it's looking like these lack-luster Sooners will be able to win one at home before going into what should be another Oklahoma loss in Dallas. 

In Sooner Magic,

The Boomer Blog