Linebacker Travis Lewis was an outstanding surprise for the Sooners in `08 PHOTO via ouinsider.com
A position that was initially thought to be thin at the beginning of last season actually turned out to be stocked with talent and now returns three starters in `09. In
Strong Side Linebacker
Starter – Keenan Clayton, Sr: His 82 tackles were the third most on the team last season. He also recorded 10 tackles for loss which was the fourth highest on the team. Clayton set an OU record in 2008 with six forced fumbles. His nine pass breakups were the second most in a season for an OU linebacker.
J.R. Bryant, Sr: Played mostly on special teams in 2008 where he recorded 16 tackles. Against
Starter – Ryan Reynolds, Sr: Before his injury during the
Mike Balogun, Sr: Saw his playing time increase after Reynolds was injured. Started the
Weak Side Linebacker
Starter – Travis Lewis, So: Lewis was the biggest surprise on the defense last season. He led the team with 144 tackles and was named the Big 12’s Defensive Freshman of the Year and the Defensive Newcomer of the Year. He tied Brian Bosworth’s record with 19 tackles in the
Jaydan Bird, Fr: Ranked as the nation’s 23rd inside linebacker by Rivals and the Number 3 player in the state of
Other Guys To Keep An Eye On
Brandon Crow, Jr: Was Brent Venables first choice after Ryan Reynolds went down and despite recording 5 tackles in the second half of the game he was the guy the Longhorns picked on. With another year of experience under his belt, Crow should be more than a capable backup for the Sooners in `09.
Tom Wort, Fr: Was the nation’s 7th ranked inside linebacker by Rivals.