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OU football notebook: Aaron Ripkowski's injury won't slow the Sooners' Belldozer package

by Berry Tramel Published: December 21, 2011

Now, because of injury and defections, the Sooners are down to two, Clay and Roy Finch, plus Trey Millard, who can move over from fullback.

“It's amazing,” Clay said. “We were hurting out there in reps (during practice earlier in the week). We were doing one or two. Now we're doing four or five in a row. We just gotta take up the slack.”

Clay said running backs coach Cale Gundy calls the trios “zebras.”

Wait, zebras?

“We're out in the jungle,” Gundy tells the players, as Clay recalled. “Them lions and cheetahs are after you.”

Clay sort of rolled his eyes and laughed.


The Insight Bowl is run by the Fiesta Bowl organizing committee, and teams in both bowls are largely left alone. While most bowls have a series of events scheduled throughout the week for the teams, not so in Greater Phoenix.

“It's a fun week,” OU safety Tony Jefferson said. “Strictly football.”

Jefferson said the Sooners used their down time at the Fiesta Bowl last season to “play video games, hold tournaments. Went to the mall.”

Jefferson said Phoenix malls were similar to what he's used to in San Diego and his teammates were amazed “that they had nice clothes.”


Jefferson said he's looking forward to three days off for Christmas, beginning today. He's headed home to San Diego.

Jefferson sarcastically said as long as he doesn't have to see fellow Cali Trio mates Kenny Stills or Clay, he'll be happy. He said he gets enough of those guys.

“I want to have Christmas with my family,” Jefferson said.


Clay said people who criticize the Sooners' use of Twitter have forgotten how Clay and fellow Californians Jefferson and Stills used Twitter to recruit other players for OU.

“We were all about getting people to come here,” Clay said. “People have to blame it (defeat) on something.”

by Berry Tramel
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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