Exactly three weeks from today, the Oklahoma Sooners will kick off the 2018 college football season! For today’s installment in our Countdown to Kickoff series, I want to take a look back on a linebacker who enjoyed punishing the opposition almost as much as he loved tea time. I’m talking about MIKE linebacker Tom Wort.
Tom Wort’s journey to Norman began across the pond. The middle linebacker grew up in Crawley, a borough in West Sussex, England. He didn’t move to the states until he was 14, where he soon picked up the sport of American football.
Wort was a star on his high school team in New Braunfels, Texas, with a knack for bone-crushing hits and timely defensive stops. He chose Oklahoma over other high-profile programs like Florida, Texas A&M and USC.
In 2009, Wort arrived to Oklahoma as an early-enrollee, but suffered a season-ending knee injury just weeks before the campaign. After redshirting that year, he returned to form and burst onto the scene in smashing fashion. Wort quickly made a name for himself with his hard-hitting style of play. Check out how he erased this Texas running back in 2010:
Wort’s closing speed was one of his greatest strengths, and you better believe he played with some pop behind those pads. Cornerback Aaron Colvin made the first contact before Wort flew in to finish the job.
Wort would go on to have some productive years and special moments in Norman before hanging up his Sooner jersey at the conclusion of the 2012 season. In 33 starts spanning three seasons, Wort recorded 190 tackles, 17.5 TFL, 10 sacks, two interceptions and three pass breakups for the Sooners.
Oh, and lots and lots of hits, because Tom Wort always brought the booms.
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