NEW ORLEANS — As expected, Oklahoma still isn’t naming its starting quarterback for Thursday’s Sugar Bowl clash with No. 3 Alabama.
OU offensive players and coaches met with reporters Monday morning. Interestingly, the Sooners made both junior Blake Bell and redshirt freshman Trevor Knight available for interviews.
“We’ve been this way throughout the entire year,” said co-offensive coordinator Josh Heupel. “It’s to keep our kids to continue to push and find out who is going to practice the best, that typically tells you who is going to play the best.
“So when we get toward the end of the week that’s when we’ll know who our guy’s going to be.”
Bell started eight games this season, and Knight started four, including the regular-season finale at Oklahoma State.
Knight left Bedlam, though, with a shoulder injury near the end of the first half, and after sophomore Kendal Thompson played for much of the third quarter, Bell entered the game permanately and led the Sooners on a game-winning touchdown drive in the final seconds.
Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart was asked Monday morning about the challenge of preparing for multiple quarterbacks.
“Anytime you prepare for an offense, you gotta be ready for the backup,” Smart said. “With these guys, you really have three guys that have played. We’ve had to prepare for three quarterbacks.
“There are some similarities between the guys and there’s also some differences. We’ve emphasized those to our players so that they understand the difference in the two really quarterbacks that they’ve used the most.
“We’ve had enough time because of the amount of time between the games that you can prepare for both. … The time allows us to have a plan for both guys. But obviously you’ll find out during the game which one’s playing better. They’ll have one in there probably more than the other, depending on how they’re playing.”