Happy Tuesday, friends and fans!
Day One of the XFL Draft is here, and a group of former Oklahoma Sooners have already made headlines. QB Landry Jones and WR Jeff Badet both found homes early, and even though they never teamed up in college, the two of them will soon be linking up for the Dallas Renegades, where OU’s all-time winningest head coach Bob Stoops runs the show.
Jones was a four-year starter at Oklahoma and still holds the program’s all-time passing record. The New Mexico native is a pure-pocket passer who knows how to spin it. As a pro, he suited up for the Pittsburgh Steelers from 2013-2017 before brief stints in Jacksonville and Oakland.
Meanwhile, Badet became a Sooner as a graduate transfer from Kentucky. His blazing speed gave Baker Mayfield a legitimate deep-threat in 2017, and on his pro-day he ran a laser-timed 4.27 40-yard dash. He had a cup of coffee with the Minnesota Vikings in 2018, and on Tuesday he was selected with the No. 4 overall pick in the Skill Position category of the XFL Draft.
Jalen Saunders, another dynamic former OU receiver, is headed to the Houston Roughnecks. Saunders began his collegiate career at Fresno State before transferring to Oklahoma. He’s a shifty pass-catcher and an excellent return specialist with superior quickness. Previously, he made an impact in the CFL with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.
In the final round of the morning, the Renegades added a third former Sooner to their roster in FB/H-Back Dimitri Flowers. In his time at Oklahoma, he was a jack-of-all trades that Lincoln Riley used everywhere for all kinds of mismatches. It’ll be interesting to see how quickly he and Landry Jones can gel together in Dallas.
Now on to today’s Hot Links! OU-Texas ratings were high, Jalen Hurts is coming out of his shell, Texas loses more starters to injury and more.
- On Monday, WR CeeDee Lamb, LB Kenneth Murray and QB Jalen Hurts were all recognized with Big 12 Player of the Week honors. That’s quite a trio, and one that could lead this team back to the College Football Playoff. Boomer!
- C&C Machine’s Allen Kenney composed his OU midseason review and second half preview for Athlon Sports. Which players have been the most valuable, and which games left on the schedule will be the most challenging? Find out what Allen thinks about all of that and more!
- The OU-Texas game was the most-watched game of Week 7 on any network, and it was also the highest rated game on FOX to date for the 2019 season. Basically, a lot of eyes saw that improved Oklahoma defense. Excellent.
- Speaking of Lamb, despite playing alongside other great talents that litter Oklahoma’s skill positions, he’s still been able to stand out among the rest with his extraordinary ability to do it all at a high level, the Norman Transcript’s Tyler Palmateer writes.
- Jalen Hurts has been on a mission since he stepped foot in Norman, and his demeanor has shown as much. However, little by little, he’s looking more comfortable with the media. Clay Horning for the Norman Transcript has more.
- On the field, Hurts is producing at a high volume with well above average efficiency. He also currently leads the Sooners in rushing, and by a lot. Eric Bailey of the Tulsa World dishes on how that fact is shaping Oklahoma’s offensive attack.
- Gus Johnson, Joel Klatt and Jenny Taft will be in Norman this Saturday for Oklahoma’s Homecoming matchup against West Virginia. Expect to hear more “CEE. DEE. LAMB!”
Around the Sports World
- Texas Longhorns coach Tom Herman confirmed starting junior safety Chris Brown and starting senior linebacker Jeffrey McCulloch have each sustained injuries that will sideline them for several weeks.
- Oregon Ducks leading receiver Jake Breeland suffered a broken leg last week and will miss the remainder of the 2019 season. Without the talented TE, UO needs others to make up for the loss in production as the Pac-12’s last realistic hope for a CFP berth.
- The Detroit Lions were the latest team on the bad end of some highly questionable calls from officials in Monday night’s loss to the Green Bay Packers. So what, if anything, can be done about it now?
- Hot Take Alert: SB Nation’s Adam Stites doesn’t think Baltimore Ravens QB Lamar Jackson is Michael Vick. No, he actually thinks he’s better than him. Hey, at least the man explains himself.
- Speaking of SB Nation, several esteemed staffers recently came together round-table style to discuss which sports-related movies should be included in the upcoming Disney+ streaming service. I remember some of those Disney Channel originals were epic, like ‘Johnny Tsunami’ and ‘Brink’.
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