As the recent coaching hires begin to fall into place and spring football quickly approaches, Oklahoma still has one more coaching vacancy left to fill. There has been some debate as to whether or not Bob Stoops would go back to the " good ol' buddy" well and bring in a guy like Mark Mangino or Chuck Long to likely handle tight ends and fullbacks.
However, there has also been considerable talk that this hire could have more of a special teams influence. It's unlikely, given Stoops' reputation, that it would be a fully dedicated special teams coach but more someone with that kind of a background who could also handle another position/s as well.
It is also no secret that Oklahoma is looking to get younger as a staff and seeking someone who has a reputation as a dynamic recruiter, preferably with ties to the southeast.
And with all of that in mind, a new name has emerged recently. That name is Derek Lewis (coaching bio), a current member of the Florida Gators coaching staff. (In an effort to give proper credit where it is due, I'm almost positive James Hale was the first one to publicly bring Lewis' name into the mix.)
Lewis seems to fit all the criteria of what Oklahoma would be looking for in a coach and his Rivals recruiting profile (2 five star and 6 four star players in the last two years) speaks for itself. He has obvious ties to the South during his time at Florida, but also is a New Orleans native with strong ties to the state of Louisiana (somewhere OU has recruited in the past) as well. In another little interesting turn of events, Lewis just so happens to be a former University of Texas football player and was involved in one of the more memorable Big 12 Championship Game plays (a 61-yard reception) that helped the Longhorns win their first Big 12 title.
Also in Oklahoma's favor, somewhat similar to the Jerry Montgomery situation, is that Lewis was the lowest paid assistant on Florida's staff last year. So could a bump in pay and/or responsibilities be enough to convince him to make the move to Norman?