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OU football: Bob Stoops relaxed, jovial before Sooners' first preseason practice

OU lineman Gabe Ikard performs Stoops' victory dance — ‘The Youngstown Shuffle' — before Caravan crowd at Cox Center.
by Jason Kersey Published: July 31, 2013

/articleid/3867887/1/pictures/2173021">Photo - University of Oklahoma head coaches from left, Bob Stoops, Sherri Coale and Lon Kruger speak during the 2013 Sooner Caravan on Wednesday, July 31, 2013 at the Cox Convention Center. Photo by Aliki Dyer/ The Oklahoman
University of Oklahoma head coaches from left, Bob Stoops, Sherri Coale and Lon Kruger speak during the 2013 Sooner Caravan on Wednesday, July 31, 2013 at the Cox Convention Center. Photo by Aliki Dyer/ The Oklahoman

As the laughter continued, Stoops smiled and ordered the crowd to “get over it.”

Stoops and his players will again sign autographs and interact with supporters Saturday morning during “Meet the Sooners Day,” then will answer questions at the program's annual media day that afternoon.

The quarterback question will undoubtedly be asked at every turn until Stoops has a firm answer. Blake Bell, who was Landry Jones' backup last year and gained valuable game experience in the popular short-yardage “Belldozer” package, is widely considered the odds-on favorite, but Stoops has shot down that idea on multiple occasions, most recently at last week's Big 12 Media Days in Dallas.

Ikard was there, too, and recited a similar answer each time he was asked about the quarterback battle.

“I have this answer memorized from Media Days,” Ikard told the crowd Wednesday. “All three guys are really good at running the ball. They all have a very impressive set of skills. They're gonna add a new dimension to our offense with the way that all three of them can run the ball. Those guys are gonna push each other through camp, all preseason they're gonna be battling with one another.

“We're excited to see who separates themselves. All three of those guys are good options. We're excited to see what's gonna happen. We kind of want to know just as much as you guys just so we can be comfortable.”

When Stoops took the stage a few minutes later, Rowland asked who would be the quarterback.

“Gabe,” Stoops responded. “Just because he can't dance doesn't mean he can't be the quarterback.”

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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