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Oklahoma Sooners Football Hot Links: Ronnie Perkins makes Bednarik watch list, Caleb Williams could enroll early, and more!

With his athletic and academic calendar in flux, Caleb Williams could end up in Norman earlier than expected.

NCAA Football: Big 12 Championship-Baylor vs Oklahoma Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Monday, friends and fans!

Oklahoma Sooners junior DE Ronnie Perkins was named to the 2020 Chuck Bednarik Award watch list — an honor for the nation’s top defensive player as judged by the Maxwell Football Club.

Coming out of St. Louis, Missouri in 2018, Perkins has been an instant impact type of player for the Sooners since he started as a true freshman. In two seasons (27 games played), he’s logged 75 total tackles, including 21.5 tackles-for-loss and 11 sacks. He’s also broken up a pass and forced a fumble. Granted, Perkins’ chances will take a hit if he doesn’t win his appeal, but he has a real shot to be one of the best at his position and take home some hardware if he can play in all of OU’s games.

In the 25 years the Bednarik Award has been presented, LB Teddy Lehman (‘03) is the only OU defender to be named its recipient. Perkins has the potential to be Alex Grinch’s best overall player in 2020, but fans may have to wait a little longer to see him on the field depending on how long his suspension from last year’s Peach Bowl semifinal extends into the upcoming season.

Now onto this week’s Monday edition of Hot Links! OU’s top QB commit is named an All-American, Lincoln Riley talks about Oklahoma’s current national title drought, Washington officially retires its nickname and more!

OU Links

  • Oklahoma 2021 five-star QB commit Caleb Williams can now add Max Preps All-American next to his Elite 11 MVP and No. 1 overall QB ranking. From all the accolades this young dual-threat gun-slinger continues to receive, it’s not a stretch to say he’s a one-of-a-kind talent.
  • Speaking of Williams, the Sooners’ commit recently discussed the possibility of enrolling early at Oklahoma. With the current state of the pandemic threatening the playability of the upcoming high school football season, Williams could opt to dual-enroll at OU before formally joining the team in 2021.
  • The Athletic’s Jason Kersey recently asked Lincoln Riley about Oklahoma’s twenty year national championship drought, and while it’s been somewhat frustrating for fans that the Sooners haven’t been able to get over the hump since 2000, he offers a some perspective on the subject.

Around the Sports World

  • It’s been a long time coming, but as of Monday, the Washington Redskins have officially retired the team’s nickname and logo. Replacements for each have yet to be determined, but updates will likely go into effect prior to the start of the 2020 NFL season.
  • Los Angeles Lakers point guard Rajon Rondo has reportedly suffered a broken right thumb and is expected to miss the next six to eight weeks. Before this unfortunate news, L.A. was regarded as one of the top contenders to challenge for an NBA title.
  • The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) has followed in the Ivy League’s footsteps by making the decision to move its 2020 football season to the spring of 2021 in light of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
  • With the start of the 2020 MLB season less than two weeks away, the Toronto Blue Jays have reached out to a triple-A club in Buffalo, New York to see if they can play their home games in their stadium. Due to COVID-19, Canada currently has in place a mandatory 14-day quarantine measure for folks traveling internationally.
  • NFL teams will be receiving Oakley Mouth Shields this week to add to players’ helmets. Designed by doctors and engineers from the NFL and the NFLPA, these shields are intended to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19. It will be interesting to see if football leagues at lower levels adapt these shields to their equipment in the coming weeks or months.

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