Much has been made about the arrival of heralded freshman running backs Roy Finch and Brennan Clay maybe overshadowing OU's other two young backs, Jonathan Miller and Jermie Calhoun.
But make no mistake, Miller and Calhoun are in the thick of the competition to snag carries behind starter DeMarco Murray.
Miller, a sophomore, says he's 100 percent after spending five months recovering from micro-fracture surgery to repair a torn meniscus he suffered against Texas A&M last season. Before the injury, Miller impressed in limited action averaging 7.2 yards per carry.
"To me he has progressed pretty well and quickly, because sometimes it takes you a while to go through the motions, and you are a little tentative or hesitant on it," said running backs coach Cale Gundy. "He has been out there running pretty fast, and again I think those two young guys (Clay and Finch) have helped him get a lot better in a hurry."
Calhoun, who ran for 220 yards on 45 carries as OU's third back last season, has showed signs already in camp he might be ready for a bigger role.
"He has been really good and comments were made (Sunday) that he looks like a different player," Gundy said. "Jermie has shown a lot of signs of being a great football player. He struggles with being immature at times as a young guy, but that is college life. Again it goes back to when does that light bulb switch on, and he has shown signs of it being on, and he has showed signs of it flickering as well. We need it to be on and stay on the whole time."
Norvell: Young wideouts better be special on special teams
Outside of Kenny Stills, it remains unclear which of OU's other four freshmen wide receivers — Trey Franks, Sheldon McClain, Justin McCay and Joe Powell — will play and which will redshirt.
Wide receivers coach Jay Norvell said that decision might come down to who shines on special teams.
"The one thing I did tell them when they first got here, I told them not to expect to get on that bus for Cincinnati or Dallas if you're not playing on special teams," Norvell said. "You've got to help this team in some way. All the great receivers that have played here have all been real good on special teams. And, we weren't that good on special teams last year. Ryan was really the only one that impacted us on special teams last year. So, these guys really need to get involved. They've got to cover punts and kicks. And return on punts and kicks to really help us. That's really important."
So far, McCay has made a splash on the coverage teams. Franks, a Texas high school track state championship, has shown some flash returning kicks.
"That's going to be the deciding factor with some of our guys," Norvell said. "When the competition is real close at some positions, the guy that helps us on special teams is going to be the guy that gets on the bus."
Florida State suffers two more key losses
Florida State junior defensive tackle Moses McCray and running back Tavares Pressley were lost for the year with torn ACLs, the team announced Tuesday. The Seminoles are OU's opponent Sept. 11 in Norman.
Pressley, who was competing for time against a deep group of running backs, was injured Friday. McCray, who has 14 career starts in two seasons, was injured Saturday.
"Neither one was hit," coach Jimbo Fisher said in the team's practice report. "They were cuts on the field and there wasn't anyone around them. They just stuck their foot in the ground and it went out. It's very unfortunate because they're both great kids."
The losses are adding up for Florida State, which also suspended junior linebacker Nigel Carr, who is facing felony charges, and dismissed receiver Jarmon Fortson from the team for a violation of team rules.