As we are all painfully aware, Bob Stoops keeps information pretty much on lockdown during the season. Even though the coaches are not allowed contact with the players, information tends to be even more scarce during summer workouts. So, unfortunately, we do not have an in-depth update for you but came across a couple nuggets that we wanted to pass along to help get you through the summer doldrums.
If you follow myself or CCM on Twitter, this won't be news to you because it's something we've been hearing for awhile now. But freshman wide receiver, Sterling Shepard, has been roundly praised thus far and we've even heard that if the season started today he would very likely be a starter. Shepard figures to spend most of his time in the slot, but the Sooners could move him around all over the field. He has moves on top of moves in the open field as well as a ridiculous vertical to go up and get the jump ball.
Shepard was a star in-state at Heritage Hall and is the son of former Sooner Derrick Shepard. In fact, according to this Oklahoman story, Shepard plans to honor his father by wearing his #3 this season.
According to talk around the program, another freshman has made a number of people go "Wow!" with his athletic ability and perhaps more importantly, his work ethic. That player is running back Alex Ross, who even has some tossing around the name Adrian Peterson. Reportedly, he is doing a lot of the same things workout wise that AD did when he arrived (except for the now legendary tale of Peterson, with two 45 pound weights hanging from his waist, leaping onto a considerably sized box) that impressed so many and earned him serious respect.
This coaching staff has developed a reputation for playing those who put in the work regardless of talent, which is why you see guys like Brennan Clay and Lane Johnson (just to name a few) continue to play ahead of others who are believed to be "more talented." By all accounts, Ross has done everything to earn both his teammates, and even more impressively Jerry Schmidt's, respect and we know the coaches are getting those reports.
In addition, there was someone on the SoonerScoop pay board who has friends in the OU program who said Ross recently ran a hand timed 4.31 forty at about 210 pounds. Which, if true, is just freaking ridiculous. Granted, it's a message board, but the guy who posted it has legit info on a more than regular basis so take that for whatever it's worth.
Finally, we thought some of you might be interested in a quick recap on where exactly things stand with respect to this most recent 2012 signing class. When and/or if recruits arrive on campus, it's rarely something you see in the papers or on most sites that cover the Sooners but is important for those of us out there who have way too much time on our hands. We wanted to give those of you who were interested an update on where things stand as of today, so here is the entire 2012 class and what we know their current status to be.
TE Laith Harlow
DE Chaz Nelson
WR Trey Metoyer
TE Brannon Green
TE Taylor McNamara
CB Kass Everett
ON CAMPUS & WORKING OUT WITH THE TEAM
QB Trevor Knight
WR Durron Neal (Did have that injury scare a week or so ago, with his knee, which was originally feared to be serious but has since been reported as "not a big deal.)
DE Michael Onuoha
RB Alex Ross
CB Zack Sanchez
TE Sam Grant
C Ty Darlington
OT Kyle Marrs
OG John Michael McGee
WR Sterling Shepard
RB David Smith
S/LB Eric Striker
RB Damien Williams
RB Daniel Brooks (Though he is recovering from major knee surgery and will redshirt this season)
YET TO ARRIVE IN NORMAN
WR Derrick Woods - Supposedly there is nothing to worry about here, he just graduated later than others but should be here very soon.
CB Gary Simon - He was always going to be a grade risk and there was some talk that things did not look good, but more recently things seem to be considerably more positive with respect to his chances of making it in.
WR LaColtan Bester - Finishing up summer school, should be here by the end of this month.
OT Will Latu - Also finishing up summer school, but according to him (on Twitter) things have gone very well and he could be here late July/early August.
WR Courtney Gardner - Has put in a crazy amount of work in the classroom to get qualified and odds seem to be in his favor at this point unless something goes really wrong with his summer classes. Another likely late July arrival.
DE Charles Tapper - Honestly, no one really knows about this one. The guys at SoonerScoop maintain that their sources are confident he'll make it, but the less talk there is (which is the situation he/we are currently in) gives me the feeling that odds are not good. Certainly not writing him off by any stretch, but it's probably a situation where we won't know for sure for awhile.