Landry Jones knew the storm was coming. The accusations and investigation. Phrases like "lack of institutional control” and "failure to monitor.” Rumors of suspension, probation, the "death penalty.”
OU's quarterback of the future didn't blink as whispers of NCAA sanctions crescendoed to a roar in the Sooner state Wednesday afternoon. His commitment to play football at Oklahoma remained firm. His respect for the coaching staff and players didn't budge. He was prepared. "It didn't bother me at all,” Jones, a four-star prospect from Artesia (N.M.), said of the penalties levied by the NCAA against OU. "The coaches had already told us what was going to go on through all of this.” By the time it was announced OU would be stripped of its 2005 victories — among several other penalties, including probation and the loss of scholarships — Jones had just finished his accuracy drills. Jones designed the drills himself — setting up trash cans for the long ball, hanging targets from the field goal net — in hopes of becoming a better candidate for the Sooner starting job as a true freshman in 2008. On Wednesday, he didn't even stop to watch the news unfold.
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Recruits not bothered by NCAA sanctionsLandry Jones wasn't the only recruiting face seemingly unfazed by the NCAA's sanctions against Oklahoma. Here's what others were saying Thursday: •"At first I was thinking pretty hard on it. OU is going to be one of the top schools on my lists, but if they would have lost any bowl games, I would have had to change my list. But what they got hit with, it didn't really affect me. Losing two scholarships just means they have to do a better job of recruiting.” — Jameel Owens, WR, Muskogee •"This is nothing. I don't think it's going to affect OU. (The roster) hasn't been at 85 for a while. They've been at 81 and 83. If they were losing 10 scholarships, maybe it would affect them, but I don't think this is going to be a major issue. Two's a number you can play around with. So you don't scholarship a kicker or something.” — Jeremy Crabtree, Rivals.com recruiting editor