NORMAN — The top prospect according to Rivals signed by Oklahoma last year wasn't Kenny Stills.
Wasn't Roy Finch.
Wasn't Tony Jefferson, either.
The No. 1 recruit in the class was Shawnee, Kan., athlete/wideout Justin McCay. Yet unlike Stills, Finch, Jefferson and almost a dozen other freshmen, McCay didn't step on the field last season. Instead, he redshirted.
But even though he's needed time to refine his receiving skills and increase his confidence, McCay remains loaded with talent, which he's begun to flash this spring. Suggesting it's only a matter of time before the 6-foot-2, 210-pound McCay becomes a factor in the Sooner offense.
“He came in rawer and a little less polished as a wideout,” said co-offensive coordinator/receivers coach Jay Norvell. “But he's really strong and fast and productive.
“And he's really starting to get a feel.”
The Sooners weren't the only ones who saw potential in McCay, who as a two-way star spearheaded Bishop Miege to a state championship his senior season. McCay considered offers from Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Notre Dame and Oregon before inking with OU.
“(We really liked) his size, his athletic ability, his strength. He's a natural athlete that runs really well,” Norvell said.
With Stills (hamstring) and Trey Franks (foot) battling nagging injuries, Dejuan Miller still easing his way back from knee surgery and Ryan Broyles only playing in spots, McCay has been getting a ton of work with the first-team offense this spring.
“Now for him it's just about playing with a sense of urgency and a sense of confidence,” Norvell said. “He's getting a lot of practice time in and he's going to gain a lot of experience from that to play with confidence.
“Kenny was here last spring and made a couple of plays and gained some confidence off of that. McCay should start feeling more confident just by being in our offense and being in our system and start playing up to that size and ability ... and that is what we are kind of starting to see.”
Colvin's transition smooth
Consider the experimental tag removed on Aaron Colvin's transition from cornerback to strong safety.
“We like him right where he's at,” secondary coach Willie Martinez said of Colvin playing safety.
“We're going to see how the young players are developing, how things go the rest of spring, how the other corners are progressing, too. But right now we feel comfortable and he feels comfortable. It's really amazing how he's caught on, a very instinctive player, a playmaker. We're excited right now about him at the strong safety position.”
One of those “other corners” is sophomore Gabe Lynn, who has emerged into the starting lineup with Colvin's position change and Jamell Fleming's suspension.
“Gabe has come back really focused in the winter and in the spring, done a really good job in the weight room and that's carried over to the field,” Martinez said. “Smart player. We're really excited about him.”
Texas QB position not settled
Texas could be heading to the fall with a quarterback controversy.
Incumbent starter Garrett Gilbert hardly solidified his spot as the No. 1 QB during the Longhorns' spring game Sunday. He opened the game with an incompletion, then an interception.
Gilbert came back to finish the day 8 of 15 passing with 76 yards, but was outplayed by sophomore backup Case McCoy, who completed seven of his first eight passes for 71 yards and a touchdown against the first-team defense.
Redshirt freshman Connor Wood also had a solid outing, throwing for 82 yards on 8 of 14 passing with no interceptions.
This position won't be settled until the fall — and maybe not until a couple of games into the season.