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2009 OU Football Preview: Defensive Secondary

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Carter could be the big hitter that the OU secondary has missed since Roy Williams

 

Oklahoma’s defensive secondary is a bit intriguing because the Sooners boast two of the best corners in the country and a pair of safeties who will be first year starters. Dominique Franks and Brian Jackson are both shutdown corners who can turn an interception into a pick-six in a matter of seconds but that isn’t what excites me the most. Don’t get me wrong, because it’s great to have two guys on the islands like these because it frees up Brent Venables to send the safeties on blitzes because they can hold their own in single coverage. Not to mention their ability to blitz themselves.


All that said, it’s been a while since head hunters roamed Oklahoma’s secondary. There’s been a nastiness missing that’s caused opponents not to fear catching passes over the middle. Nic Harris was more than solid in coverage and despite size that allowed him to play linebacker he consistently didn’t provide the type of eye popping hits that make receivers listen for footsteps. Quinton Carter may be the player to change all that. He loves to make the big hit and if the glimpses that he gave us last season are what he provides on a game to game basis this year then opponents had better strap up, and that’s what excites me the most.

 

Cornerbacks

Starter – Dominique Franks, Jr: Was a second team All Conference selection in `08, scored two defensive touchdowns (fumble against A&M, interception against Nebraska), led the team with 10 pass deflections.

 

Starter – Brian Jackson, Sr: Recorded 66 tackles in `08, broke up 10 passes, recovered 3 fumbles, forced 2 fumbles and intercepted 2 passes.

 

Jamell Fleming, So: Recorded 23 special teams tackles in `08.

 

Lamar Harris, RFr: Was the nation’s 26th ranked athlete in the `08 recruiting class.

 

Demontre Hurst, Fr: Nation’s 37th ranked corner in the `09 recruiting class.

 

Gabe Lynn, Fr: Nation’s top ranked cornerback in the `09 recruiting class.

 

Jonathan Nelson, Jr: Played in four games on special teams in `08.

 

 

Strong Safety

Starter – Sam Proctor, So: Was a regular on special teams in `08 recording 10 tackles, recorded 4 more tackles in game action.

 

Javon Harris, Fr: Has impressed coaches to the point where he will play somewhere as a freshman and not necessarily on special teams. Could actually be pushing Proctor for playing time.

 

Joseph Ibiloye, RFr: Was the 10th ranked safety in the `08 recruiting class.

 

Free Safety

Starter – Quinton Carter, Jr: Started two games last season (Kansas, Big 12 Championship) and played in a total of 12 games recording 37 tackles and 2 pass breakups. In his two starts he recorded 10 tackles against Kansas and 8 against Missouri.

 

Desmond Jackson, So: Played in 9 games in `08 as a special teams player.

 

Emmanuel Jones, Sr: Recorded no stats in `08.