Oklahoma senior quarterback-turned-tight end Blake Bell isn’t protected by the blue practice jersey anymore, but he said he doesn’t mind.
“You know what? Not really,” Bell responded when asked if he misses it. “I went out there the first day and had a tight crimson jersey on, and it made me feel kinda big. That blue one kind of made you look smaller.”
Bell is still adjusting to the more physical practices tight ends endure. He said he’s mostly gone against defensive end Geneo Grissom and pass-rushing linebacker Eric Striker in practice.
“I’d say almost every play we’re talking,” Bell said. “Every play, we’re talking. I can’t say everything they say, but it’s fun.”
He said he likes that coaches aren’t making him take any reps at quarterback. They have allowed him to be all-in at tight end.
“That was one of the things I wanted to do,” Bell said. “If I was going to go to tight end, I wanted to go full at it and work hard. That’s what I wanted to do from now on. I’m happy that they are letting me do it.”
TALENTED RECEIVERS LURED ALLEN BACK
Former Sooner Drew Allen was the only quarterback who went through drills at the pro day on Wednesday.
Allen spent four years at OU before receiving his degree and transferring to Syracuse where he played this past season.
“I’m the quarterback for this ’09 class (at OU), so I knew this would be a great opportunity for me to come in and throw to some great receivers,” Allen said. “There are some really great receivers in this draft class for Oklahoma, and I obviously knew that, so I asked Coach (Bob) Stoops and he was nice enough to let me come do this. He couldn’t have been more hospitable about it. Anything I needed he wanted me to let him know, and I think that’s how it is no matter how long you’ve been out of the program.”
Syracuse’s pro day is set for March 26, but Allen says he does not plan to attend.
SHEPARD LEADING RECEIVERS
Junior wide receiver Sterling Shepard spent his first two years on campus playing with lots of experienced, veteran wideouts.
But entering 2014, Shepard is the veteran of the group who has the most game experience.
“I’ve told Shep, his world is different now,” said receivers coach Jay Norvell. “He’s not the young guy. He’s played a lot of football around here. He knows what it takes to win big games. He has got to make players around him better. That’s one thing, when you become a leader, you’ve gotta make everybody else better.”
In his career, Shepard has appeared in 26 games with 15 starts, and recorded 96 receptions for 1,224 yards and 10 touchdowns.
Co-offensive coordinator Josh Heupel, on freshman fullback Dimitri Flowers, who enrolled early and is going through spring practice:
“He’s one of the most skilled guys, most well-rounded guys that I’ve seen come into our program. ...He’s extremely bright for a young kid coming into your program. He doesn’t look like a freshman out there.”