Share “Oklahoma football: Corey Nelson's...”

Oklahoma football: Corey Nelson's confidence soars now that linebackers are again relevant in OU's defense

In the weeks following Oklahoma's Cotton Bowl loss, Sooner coaches met with senior Corey Nelson, fessed up to some schematic gaffes and vowed to make it right moving forward.
by Jason Kersey Published: March 14, 2013

NORMAN — In the weeks following Oklahoma's Cotton Bowl loss, Sooner coaches met with senior Corey Nelson, fessed up to some schematic gaffes and vowed to make it right moving forward.

So far, so good. Through four spring practices, two rebirths are taking place: linebackers' relevance in Oklahoma's defense, and Nelson's self-confidence.

“Last year, I got down on myself,” Nelson said after Thursday's practice. “I got it back. I got my swag back ... but I was down in confidence once upon a time.”

Nelson's emotional dip came as Oklahoma coaches experimented with no-linebacker schemes late in the 2012 season, when the Sooners met some of the nation's most prolific spread offenses.

Opponents gashed Oklahoma's defense and, as a result, its linebackers' confidence while they stood idly on the sideline.

“Toward the end, we started to get a little relaxed and tended to not care,” Nelson said. “But after (coaches) saw that, they knew they had to make some changes and they had to fix it.”

Linebacker Tom Wort opted to skip his senior season at Oklahoma and enter the NFL Draft, a move that surprised almost everyone, including Nelson.

“He told me he was gonna leave after the last game, the bowl game,” Nelson said. “But I kinda didn't believe him. It threw me for a loop when he did, though.”

At Wednesday's Oklahoma Pro Day, Wort said schematic changes and frustration “somewhat” factored into his decision to leave.

Continue reading this story on the...

by Jason Kersey
OU Sports Reporter
Jason Kersey became The Oklahoman's OU football beat writer in May 2012 after a year covering high school sports and OSU recruiting. Before joining the newspaper in November 2006 as a part-time results clerk, he covered high school football for...
+ show more


AROUND THE WEB

  1. 1
    This is what makes Dollywood such an epic theme park
  2. 2
    Breast cancer could be 'stopped in its tracks' by new technique, say scientists
  3. 3
    'Draw Muhammad' contest planned in Phoenix
  4. 4
    80-year-old traveler becomes Internet superstar
  5. 5
    KFOR: Oklahoma judge sends tardy defendants directly to jail
+ show more