Oklahoma announced its team captains on Friday, selected by a team vote. The two offensive captains will be junior quarterback Sam Bradford and senior tight end Brody Eldridge. On defense, junior defensive tackle Gerald McCoy and senior linebacker Ryan Reynolds will represent the Sooners. "It says a lot about our program that so many other players were mentioned on the ballots,” coach Bob Stoops said in a release. "We have a large pool of players who fit the role of captain, and that tells me we have a healthy and cohesive locker room.”
Beal awing coachesJeremy Beal was the first defensive end to lock up his position as starter, impressing coaches in the first few days of camp. Over two weeks later, nothing’s changed, but defensive ends coach Chris Wilson reached deep in his bag of superlatives to describe Beal’s preseason. "This is my 16th season coaching football,” Wilson said. "And he has had as good of a camp as anyone I’ve been around.” Wilson applauded his daily improvement, but was most impressed with Beal’s quick learning and refusal to make the same mistake twice. "We can talk about something in a meeting, and it carries over to the football field,” Wilson said.
Wilson: Kickoff coverage will improveLast season, Oklahoma gave up four kickoff returns for touchdowns, including a game-changing return by receiver Jordan Shipley in a loss to Texas. Wilson, who also serves as special teams coordinator, says the kickoff coverage team will be the special teams unit that shows the most improvement in 2009. "We had to make it a bigger point of emphasis,” Wilson said. "Obviously it’ll be the biggest area for improvement, but we’re looking for improvement in the other three phases.” Wilson said he didn’t believe personnel was an issue last season, and didn’t plan on using any more defensive starters than usual on the kickoff coverage unit.
Balogun status unchangedSenior linebacker Mike Balogun has still not resolved his eligibility status with the NCAA. Balogun and his lawyer are looking to settle the matter out of court, and have filed several affidavits with the Cleveland County courts. As of Friday, Balogun was still practicing with the Sooners, thanks to a temporary restraining order.
Quotables"He reminds me of Larry Fitzgerald, just the way he goes up and competes for the ball and makes all the great catches. No matter where the quarterback throws it, if it’s anywhere near him, he’s going to catch it.” Cornerback Dominique Franks on sophomore receiver Dejuan Miller.