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Oklahoma Sooners Football: OU hires UCLA’s Roy Manning as cornerbacks coach

Another up-and-coming defensive coach is added to the Sooners’ staff.

Iowa State v Oklahoma Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images

The Oklahoma Sooners have found their next cornerbacks coach in UCLA’s Roy Manning. The 37-year-old brings more of that youthful energy to the coaching staff that Lincoln Riley has sought since the defensive coaching staff was turned over to DC Alex Grinch.

Manning, a native of Saginaw, Mich., was a linebacker for the Michigan Wolverines from 2000-04 before a three-year stint in the NFL. Although he’s still quite young from a coaching perspective, he’s held a number of high-profile assistant gigs, such as OLB and CB coach at Michigan in ‘13 and ‘14, respectively. He then settled in at Washington State to coach OLBs from 2015-17 under Grinch. Most recently, Manning coached linebackers and the special teams units at UCLA in ‘18. As a recruiter, he has ties to both the Midwest and West Coast regions, which should only help expand OU’s national presence on the recruiting trail.

Here’s a video of Manning at work during his time at Washington State. Keep in mind he was coaching linebackers in Pullman, but in Norman he’ll be working with the Sooner cornerbacks.

With the Sooner defensive backs (and CBs in particular) having looked so poorly-coached for so long, this is as important a hire as any. Going into 2019, Oklahoma returns a good amount of experience in the secondary, especially at the cornerback position. Still, for as well as this hire could potentially turn out, it is a bit of an out-of-the-box move given that he only has one season as a CB coach under his belt (at UM in ‘14). The optimism is certainly of the cautious variety.

As far as the energy is concerned, that’s unquestioned. Just watch this video following a win from his time at Washington State:

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