Bedenbaugh said that with Ikard out, Darlington and senior Austin Woods — the team's long snapper — were sharing first-team reps at center.
“We've had some bad snaps,” Bedenbaugh said. “You can't ever have any bad snaps.
“Whoever got the good grade in practice, whoever graded out the best, is gonna go with the 1's. This is an everyday deal. You have to earn it every single day. We'll grade them every day and guys will move up and down based on their grades.”
With the news that senior guard Tyler Evans re-tore the ACL in his right knee, and sophomore Nila Kasitati's fight to return from his 2012 ACL tear, Oklahoma's guard depth could require Ikard's services again next season.
If that's the case, Darlington's experience last season, and his experience through spring ball, will certainly benefit the unit.
“Being around some of the guys I've gotten to be around has been a huge help, rather than being on the scout team or doing whatever,” Darlington said after the Cotton Bowl. “I was playing with these older guys, playing with Gabe. ... It's a valuable learning experience. I think it's really gonna help us out next year.”