Defensive end Ronnell Lewis is practicing with the first team defense, but the former Dewar High star said he should find out this week whether he'll be academically eligible. Summer classes concluded Friday.
BACKFIELD COMPETITION HEATS UP
Running back is the high profile battle during fall camp. The front runners are sophomores Roy Finch and Brennan Clay, who gained experience last season.
"Those guys will be there. And Jonathan Miller has really been impressive," said coach Bob Stoops. "He had a great day today. He looks really good along with Dominique Whaley and Brandon Williams. We'll see where it goes.
"We can use three guys for sure to keep them fresh. They give you a different change of pace. Obviously, if a guy is hot leave him in there. But even when they've been hot, that means they've been on a little bit of a tear and need a blow. We'll use all those guys."
FLEMING BIGGER, STRONGER
Cornerback Jamell Fleming, second in the nation in passes broken up last season, missed spring drills due to academic issues but returned this summer.
"He looks great," Stoops said. "He still has that great speed that he's always had. He's added a few pounds. He looks strong. We anticipate him continuing to do well."
JOHNSON ADAPTING WELL
Stoops said offensive tackles Darryl Williams and Lane Johnson are playing well early in camp. Johnson, 6-foot-6, 305 pounds, moved from defense to offense last spring.
"That kid is unbelievably athletic," Ikard said. "He definitely runs under 4.8 (in the 40-yard dash). He can fly and has a 10-foot, 3-inch broad jump. His numbers are ridiculous. He's like a super human person.
"Now he's getting everything figured out on the field. He's going to be rotating, maybe even starting. He's done a great job doing what he needs to do strength-wise, size-wise to get on the field."
MISSING AUSTIN BOX
Many players were asked at Media Day how they're dealing with linebacker Austin Box's death.
Box died accidentally in May from a toxic mix of painkillers.
"He's all over clips we show our defense from 2008, 2009 and last year, so we're constantly reminded of him," said defensive coordinator Brent Venables. "There is no quote, unquote plan of how to handle the situation outside of being openly supportive, leaning on each other, helping each other cope."
Teammates are doing several things in memory of Box.
Travis Lewis places Box's helmet at his warm-up position.
Some teammates pray before practice.
Quarterback Landry Jones will contact Box's parents to see how they feel about him continuing to wear No. 12, the number Box wore.
STILLS' HAIR A HOT TOPIC
One highlight on Media Day was wide receiver Kenny Stills' Mohawk. What makes his version unique is Stills' thick brown hair down the middle is complemented by a dyed blonde tail.
"Someone dared me to do it," Stills said. "I'm big on controversy. I love proving people wrong. A lot of people didn't think I'd even be here, and I'm here. I'm fueled by people telling me I can't do something."
Said guard Gabe Ikard: " If he's catching touchdowns, I don't care what his hair looks like."
How long will Stills wear his new style?
"When people leave it alone and forget that it's here, it will be gone," Stills said.
PRACTICES MOVED BACK TWO HOURS
Starting Sunday, practice will be moved back to 9:45 a.m. Meetings will be held from 8 to 9:30 a.m.
Saturday's high was 109, but the Sooners haven't had any heat issues. They've benefitted from morning practices.
"It's really helped the players," Stoops said. "They're staying more fresh and healthy."
KIDS GET AUTOGRAPHS
Meet the Sooners Day was held on a Saturday because players were still in summer class last week. Because of an expected high turnout, autographs were limited to children age 14 and under.
"We probably took care of 10 times more children than we would have if we did it the other way. That was positive," Stoops said. "And we had the children out of the heat under the stadium."
Kenny Stills (strained hamstring) is the only player who has suffered an injury the first three days. ... Saturday's session was the first practice in pads... Stoops said he's encouraged by wide receiver Jaz Reynolds' improvement in the spring and early in camp. ... Stoops said he's excited watching middle linebacker Tom Wort, "a night and day" difference from a year ago.