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Oklahoma football: Taylor McNamara and the tight ends have bigger presence in spring game

Over Taylor McNamara’s first two seasons on campus, tight ends haven’t been a huge part of the OU passing game, though if Saturday’s Red-White Game is any indication, the position could be in for a comeback in 2014.
by Jason Kersey Published: April 12, 2014

But players who were recruited as tight ends like McNamara haven’t been involved as much, particularly in the passing game. McNamara graduated from high school early and went through spring football in 2012, and even started a game early in his true freshman season before suffering a season-ending injury.

He didn’t make his first career reception until a 4-yard catch in the Sugar Bowl three months ago.

Ijalana, a junior-college transfer from Pierce Community College in Woodland Hills, Calif., made an 18-yard reception Saturday.

Flowers, who coaches and teammates have frequenty compared to Millard, came out with the first-team offense and was impressive, catching the first pass of the game from Knight.

There was a brief scare in the fourth quarter when cornerback Zack Sanchez came in for a low tackle on Flowers, who appeared to suffer a knee injury.

Coach Bob Stoops said after the game, though, that Flowers’ injury was just a hyperextension.

“Obviously, a knee is a scary thing,” Flowers said. “But as soon as I got up and got it moving, I felt pretty good.”

After Saturday’s spring game, OU fans everywhere have to feel pretty good themselves about the future of the tight end position.

“It’s a position we want to keep in the mix and keep on the field,” McNamara said. “I think we proved ourselves a little bit today.”