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Oklahoma Sooners Football: Tre Norwood has declared for the NFL Draft

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The nickel back from Fort Smith, Arkansas led the Sooners with five interceptions in 2020.

Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic - Oklahoma v Florida Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

After ending the 2020 season on a high note, Oklahoma Sooners DB Tre Norwood has declared for the 2020 NFL Draft. Norwood, who started the final five games of the season at nickel, led OU with five interceptions during his redshirt junior season.

Norwood came to Norman as a three-star prospect in 2017 and made an immediate impression on the staff with his speed and quickness, and he’d eventually take a starting cornerback spot from struggling senior Jordan Thomas. Unfortunately, he was slight of build at the time, and opponents would often take advantage of that fact over the next two seasons.

During the 2019 offseason, Norwood suffered a season-ending injury. New DC Alex Grinch had envisioned him playing a key role in the defense due to the fact that he was able to get his weight up, and it proved beneficial after he returned in 2020. After seizing the starting nickel duties midway through the season, he never looked back.

While this development is not something that was expected, the Fort Smith Northside product is looking to capitalize on a very strong ending to the season, with all five of his picks coming in the final six game of the campaign. Additionally, Norwood earned his degree from OU in December, so the decision to move on is understandable.

So where does Alex Grinch go from here? OU will be returning the much-maligned — yet experienced — Bookie Radley-Hiles in 2021, and the nickel position should also get contributions from Jeremiah Criddell and Justin Harrington (No. 1 JUCO safety who missed this season due to injury). The cupboard is far from bare, but Norwood’s loss will indeed be felt.