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Oklahoma football: Sooner coaches seem intent on a true quarterback competition

Oklahoma coaches seem fully intent on making the race to replace Landry Jones a true competition between junior Blake Bell, sophomore Kendal Thompson and redshirt freshman Trevor Knight.
by Jason Kersey Published: March 12, 2013

— In each of Oklahoma's three spring football practices so far, a different quarterback took the majority of first-team snaps.

“Until guys separate themselves and have earned something, then they all deserve a chance,” said OU co-offensive coordinator Josh Heupel.

Oklahoma coaches seem fully intent on making the race to replace four-year starter Landry Jones a true competition between junior Blake Bell, sophomore Kendal Thompson and redshirt freshman Trevor Knight.

None of the three OU quarterbacks were made available to reporters after Tuesday's practice, and they'll remain off-limits until the April 13 spring game.

Other OU offensive players, though, spoke about the competition Tuesday.

“I like to egg it on and really push them, and see who wants it more and wants to break out,” said senior running back Damien Williams. “No one has broke out yet.”

Last year's spring game was Bell's first — and, so far, only — true opportunity to publicly show the passing ability that is paramount to Oklahoma's offensive system.

He completed 14 of 19 passes for 179 yards and a touchdown that day, and seemed to take firm control of the Sooners' backup quarterback job.

Last season, though, he only saw the field in short-yardage or goal-line situations in the “Belldozer” package.

“He's a great runner,” said senior fullback Trey Millard. “At the same time, definitely to be the quarterback we need, he needs to throw the ball, too.

“He can, and I think you all will be able to see that soon.”

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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...
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