When he first heard the news, Brennan Clay admits he was surprised. Three weeks after verbally committing to Oklahoma, Clay found out he wasn’t the only blue-chip running back heading to Norman. So was Roy Finch, also one of the best prospects in the nation, who made his pledge to the Sooners last weekend. But contrary to what message board posters from other fan bases were hoping, Clay wasn’t disappointed, nor wavering in his commitment. Far from it, in fact. "When I heard Roy committed, I was so excited. He’s a great ball player, his instincts are out of this world,” recalled Clay, who tracked down Finch’s number and phoned him the next day to congratulate him. "Roy and I in the same backfield — it’s going to be a problem for other teams for the next few years.” In 2008, OU became the first school in college football history to produce a 4,000-yard passer, 1,000-yard receiver and a pair of 1,000-yard rushers in Chris Brown and DeMarco Murray. Following the June commitments of Clay and Finch, dual-threat backs who will join highly touted quarterback Blake Bell in Norman next year, the Sooners appear to be loading up for a future run at the same milestone. Both running backs, with their abilities to catch out of the backfield and make defenders miss in the open field, possess similar skill sets to Murray, who last year set the school record for all-purpose yards in a season. The 6-foot, 193-pound Clay is ranked the No. 2 all-purpose back and No. 41 overall player in the nation by Rivals. Clay is the first player ever to total 1,000 rushing and receiving yards in the same season in San Diego, which is where Heisman winners Marcus Allen, Reggie Bush, Rashaan Salaam and Ricky Williams also played their high school football. Finch, who temporarily moved to Oklahoma and attended Edmond North his sophomore year, rushed for almost 1,300 yards and 25 touchdowns last season as a junior while also making several plays with his hands for Niceville, located in the Florida panhandle. The 5-foot-8, 175-pound Finch is rated the nation’s No. 3 all-purpose back and No. 77 overall prospect. But what should excite OU fans as much as their talents, is their attitudes and willingness already to embrace each other as teammates, even though they’ll be battling for carries one day in the Sooner backfield. Last month, while speaking at the Sooner Caravan in Dallas, coach Bob Stoops lauded Brown and Murray for their friendship off the field despite competing for playing time in a crowded running back rotation that might cause others in the same situation to transfer away. So far, despite growing up on opposite coastlines, it seems Clay and Finch are on track to developing a similar camaraderie. "When we first talked, we just clicked. Like we were brothers,” Finch said. "I envision us having the same type of relationship Chris and DeMarco have. "We know together we have a chance to do something special at Oklahoma.”
Online:Watch videos of Brennan Clay and Roy Finch in action on the OU blog at http://blog.newsok.com/ou.